Ultimately, every project comes down to one thing: the potential ROI. Here are eight tips for developing a business case to convince executives to invest in new technology:
1. Relate the problem to the bottom line
Are your employees spending too much time on mundane, repetitive processes? Present that information in terms of lost productivity and labor costs. Are you continually missing deadlines? Calculate the penalties you’ve had to pay as a result. Sound financial reasoning sets your recommendation off on the right foot.
2. Show multiple opportunities for improvement
3. Demonstrate long-term usability
4. Build credibility through case studies and reports
SAP vs. Oracle Case Study
SAP and Oracle both invest heavily in cloud technology. However, our client was skeptical about cloud scalability and unsure if the products were mature and proven.
5. Anticipate failure
- Our IT team doesn’t have the time to spend on implementation.
- Our legacy systems are too old to work with a new ERP system.
- Our processes are too complex for an out-of-the-box product.
- Our data won’t be secure.
6. Set a realistic timeframe
7. Offer to monitor, report and analyze
8. Liaise between executives and end-users
“Organizations don’t prosper,” notes Harvard Business Review, “unless managers in the middle ranks . . . identify and promote the need for change.”
Executives don’t always see the day-to-day issues that impede productivity, but they do have the responsibility to listen to and solve their organization’s challenges. Presented with sound reasoning, a business case for an ERP implementation can convince executives to invest in technology that enables transformation.