Seven Measures for Technology ROI
There is a strong consensus among business leaders that future investments will primarily involve technology resources and applications. Improvements in operational processes and in customer facing capabilities will help leading companies maintain and improve their competitive advantage.
As with all investments, technology improvements that are nice to have but do little to improve the organization’s performance and business results pale in comparison to those that do. Here are seven measures leadership teams can use to help guide these important discussions and lead to better, more informed decisions.
- Reduce the number of internal “touches.” Automation that streamlines operations and enables internal processes to move more smoothly, with increased reliability, and less human intervention will provide substantial benefits.
- Enable customers to enter their orders, track progress, and pay in advance. While this will not apply to all customers, a certain percentage of your clients are likely candidates for this approach. The savings of time, effort and errors can be dramatic.
- Provide “decision worthy” data. Technology applications can and should bring useful data and timely, reliable information to senior leaders which they can and will use to make important business decisions.
- Resources (time and dollars) required to implement. Estimating the budget for technology investments is necessary but not sufficient. What is the time required to fully implement these applications and fully train team members so that full benefits will be realized?
- Is it doable? A realistic assessment of the current workload of I/T resources is a first step in assessing whether there is bandwidth to move these important projects forward. Does the team have the expertise and the time, or will external resources be needed?
- Projected bottom line impact. Technology investments need to have a specific, measurable financial impact on the organization realized by enhanced revenue opportunities and/or significant expense savings.
- Potential to reduce head count. This one may sound harsh and there is no doubt that organizations will continue to need skilled, talented, committed people. Investing in technology solutions to automate processes and systems can free up people and resources to be deployed in ways to better serve the enterprise.
For more information on ways to help frame and discuss key business decisions, contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org
Joseph P. Truncale, Ph.D., CAE, is the Founder and Principal of Alexander Joseph Associates, a privately held consultancy specializing in executive business advisory services with clients throughout the graphic communications industry.
Joe spent 30 years with NAPL, including 11 years as President and CEO. He is an adjunct professor at NYU teaching graduate courses in Executive Leadership; Financial Management and Analysis; Finance for Marketing Decisions; and Leadership: The C Suite Perspective. He may be reached at Joe@ajstrategy.com. Phone or text: (201) 394-8160.