Revenue Operations

How to Automate your Renewals Process and free up your Customer Success team's time

Dan Veres
Mar 6, 2024

“Hold on, wait… we’re at $10M in revenue but not tracking those in Salesforce yet?”

You look at your VP of Customer Success in disbelief.

It’s your first week in your new role as Head of RevOps. 

You joined a rocketship. Your new company hit $10M in 3 years and just raised a $50M round. Dream company and dream title. 

But you can’t believe what your VP just told you.

“We’re not actually tracking renewals in Salesforce right now.” 

It hits you like a train. Here you were, excited to crush your first week. You had all sorts of ideas on how you were going to turn your revenue team into the industry’s gold standard. 

But now, all those brilliant ideas have to wait. 

Your Customer Success Managers are knee-deep in spreadsheets trying to manage renewals today.

They’re spending half their week just on paperwork. 

Even worse… as the new Head of RevOps… you have no insight or reporting abilities around your customers’ lifecycles and revenue. 

It’s a hot mess…

Renewals: Set the Standard

Designing an efficient, standardized renewal process doesn’t just benefit your customers - it benefits your entire revenue organization as well.

It reduces churn. 

Your revenue predictability will improve. 

Opportunities for upsells and cross sells will increase. 

There’s really no negatives associated with a strong renewal process. 

But there’s a fine line between what’s effective vs. what’s ineffective when it comes to renewal strategies. 

Effective strategies tend to automate much of the process while remaining customer friendly. 

Ineffective strategies tend to waste your Customer Success team’s time and require lots of manual intervention and paperwork. 

Here at, we examined hundreds of SaaS companies’ renewal processes to share some tips and suggestions on how best-in-class revenue organizations run renewals. 

The above story is a true one - we actually had a customer who didn’t start tracking renewals in their CRM until they were well past $10M. 

But, by following the tips outlined below, they were able to build a renewals process from scratch that improved their customer retention, increased revenue, and turned their Customer Success team into an efficient renewals machine. 

The Cornerstone of Renewal Success: Data Hygiene

When it comes to SaaS renewals, data hygiene is the key. Without accurate data from the start, managing renewals becomes a difficult and error-prone process. 

Think of it like cooking with an old, worn out recipe book. There’s stains and tears in all the pages. It’s impossible to read the ingredients and measurements accurately. Unsurprisingly, your dish comes out tasting pretty funky… 

It’s the same thing with renewals except in this case, your original contract (i.e. the new business contract) is the recipe book. And there are typically some very important fields from that original contract that need to be stored accurately in the CRM. 

From our analysis, here are the essential data fields your CRM should capture for New Business Opportunities to ensure ease of renewal:

  • Contract Period (Start & End Date)
  • Contract Term
  • Billing Frequency
  • Payment Terms
  • Billing Contact
  • Auto-Renewal (Yes/No)
  • Termination Notice (Number of Days)
  • Custom Terms (Yes/No)
  • Products & Pricing
  • Overage/Expansion Rates (if applicable)
  • ARR (Annual Recurring Revenue)
  • TCV (Total Contract Value)

Remember, "Quality data in = quality data out." Ensuring these fields are accurately populated from the beginning can significantly streamline your renewal process.

If you’re using a product like for your CPQ process, these fields are already managed, collected, and mapped to your CRM in the appropriate places. Register for a free account to get started.

If you’re doing this from another platform or from scratch, consult with your team’s CRM admin or operations consultant to help extend fields and build a strong closed-won process to verify the information is accurate at closing time.

III. Deciding Between Auto-Renewal and Manual Renewal

“Should we include an auto-renewal clause on our contracts?”

Well, it depends on a few factors… 

While auto-renewals offer convenience, they may miss opportunities for valuable customer engagement and upselling. 

To make a strategic decision, here’s what to consider:

  • Enterprise to SMB Customer Ratio: Enterprises may prefer or require negotiations, making auto-renewal less feasible. SMBs may prefer not to discuss renewals.
  • CSM or Account Manager to Customer Ratio: High ratios may hinder the ability to deliver personalized renewal negotiations.
  • Additional Product and Pricing Changes per year: Renewal periods are opportune times to introduce updates for better product and pricing structures.

Incorporating a strategy that reflects your business model and customer needs will require a deeper internal evaluation. The above KPIs can help drive the decision on whether to invest in renewal automation.

From our analysis, many companies set auto-renewal as the default option on their contracts. But they allow their sales team and customers to negotiate this clause. In cases like this, it’s important to have a robust tracking and reporting structure to know which customers are on auto-renewal versus those that aren’t.

If you’re using, tracking these clauses is simple and accurate. Any time a contract is signed with the auto-renewal clause included, our system can tag the account and/or opportunity record in the CRM. At time of renewal, it’s very easy for the CSM to see which customers are on auto-renewal vs. which ones are not. 

Automating the Renewal Process: Efficiency Meets Engagement

Many CSMs find themselves bogged down by renewal paperwork, detracting from valuable customer interaction time. Automation can reclaim this time while maintaining a high level of customer service.

Let’s look at a three-step process involving systems and people to handle renewals at scale.

  1. Ensure CRM fields for "Renewal Type" and "Renewal Date" are set up and populated.

    Best practices dictate these fields are set at the closed-won time on new business. If using Salesforce or HubSpot CRM, consider creating a new custom field on the new Opportunity/Deal that is copied from the originating new business deal. If using, you can use the contract period’s end date as a mapping to your renewal date.

    This information in the CRM is crucial to automating renewals because it tells you: 
    1. what renewal process to use for this customer (i.e., manual renewal or auto-renewal)
    2. when to initiate that process for each customer.
  2. Implement an automated email to notify customers of their upcoming renewal 30 to 90 days in advance. Provide a clear, concise template that outlines the renewal details and next steps.

    For auto-renewal customers, we recommend sending the notification email 45 days in advance of the renewal date. Here’s a simple email template you can use for auto-renewing customers:

Hello {{Contact Name}},

We’re sending this email to inform you that your subscription is set to auto-renew on {{Renewal_Date}}. Your current annual subscription is {{ARR}}.

If you’d like to make a change to your subscription, please contact your Account Manager.

Otherwise, if there are no changes to your subscription, then you’ll receive an invoice on {{RenewalDate}}.

Thank you for your business and we look forward to our continued partnership!

{{Your Name}}

And here’s a template you can use for non auto-renewing customers. You’ll want to send this email with more advance notice - we recommend at the 90 day mark. The extra time is helpful in these cases in the event of a renegotiation of terms, pricing, etc.

Here’s a template you can use for non auto-renewing customers:

Hello {{Contact Name}},

We’re sending this email to inform you that your subscription is set to expire on {{renewal date}}.

In order to continue your subscription, you’ll need to sign a Renewal Order Form. Do you anticipate any changes to your subscription or would you like me to start putting together a Renewal Order based on your existing subscription details?



  1. With this setup, your customers will receive these notification emails and decide if a conversation is necessary for the renewal with the account manager. 

By automating routine communications, Account Managers and CSMs can focus on customers requiring special attention or those considering changes to their subscription. Automating where appropriate ensures "Quality data in = quality data out" and enhances customer satisfaction.

Title: Creating a Renewal Contract

Okay so your customer is not on auto-renewal so you’ve got to sign them to a new contract. Where do you start? 

Well this is where good data hygiene really starts to pay off. If your data is good, you can start in the CRM. 

You should have a renewal opportunity/deal where all this information is stored. Key fields include: 

  • Contract Period (Start & End Date)
  • Contract Term
  • Billing Frequency
  • Payment Terms
  • Billing Contact
  • Auto-Renewal (Yes/No)
  • Termination Notice (Number of Days)
  • Custom Terms (Yes/No)
  • Products & Pricing
  • Overage/Expansion Rates (if applicable)

Unless you want to renegotiate terms or pricing with your customer, then you should be able to use the same values as the previous contract. 

For example, if you agreed to annual billing on the first contract, you can default to annual billing on the renewal contract. 

With, creating the renewal contract is a couple clicks. Our native Salesforce integration lets you pull all these fields straight into a renewal template.

This turns into a live deal that is immediately ready for internal approval and then sharing/e-signing with your customer. also lets you build custom approval workflows for renewals. Many companies, for example, have an automated workflow that routes renewals through Customer Success leadership for approval before the contract can be shared with the customer. 

If you’re not using, then you can manually enter this information into a word doc (or whatever tool you use). 

Once the Renewal Contract is created, it can be reviewed, shared, and signed just like any normal contract. Just don’t forget to update your CRM with any changes that might happen during negotiation! (Remember, updates your CRM for you - yes to automation!)

Renewal Readiness

Streamlining your renewal process not only leads to operational efficiency; it also opens up opportunities for deeper customer engagement and retention. By ensuring data hygiene from the onset, making informed decisions between auto-renewal and manual renewal, and embracing automation, you can create a renewal ecosystem that supports business growth and customer satisfaction. 

Always remember: "Quality data in = quality data out." Reevaluate your current renewal strategies with this mantra in mind, and consider how these improvements can be integrated into your business model.

Thanks for reading and here's to a future of seamless renewals!


Sr. Account Manager

Dan Veres

Dan works with both new and existing customers. As someone in sales, he only wishes he knew about RevOps in previous jobs. You can find Dan hiking, reading, or enjoying life's finer things in his free time.

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