The business case for introducing technology

Jeff Breunsbach
Jeff Breunsbach Member Posts: 266 Gain Grow Retain Staff
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edited July 2020 in CS Technology

We've seen many times that there is a challenge to build the business case that we should invest in a technology to help our CSM team. 

Any examples out there on how to approach this?  Could be a great conversation to bring in to your CFO's office and get ahead of. 



  • Jeremy Donaldson
    Jeremy Donaldson Member Posts: 71 Expert
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    edited May 2020

    Leveraging CS software is about changing the organization's thinking from "inside out" to "outside in". CS software should be first look at as a tool to make CS more valuable to the customer. It is there to enable the customer to be more success and find more value for the actual services and software your organization provided.

    If you can both of those things, the payback to the CFO comes in the form of higher retention rates, more upsell opportunity, and even an increase in referencable customers.

    "You have to spend money to make money"

  • David Ellin
    David Ellin Member Posts: 170 Expert
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    edited May 2020

    Love @Jeremy Donaldson ’s comment. CFOs almost always think ROI but reduced churn brings real value, not only in terms of building longer term relationships but lower new logo selling costs to offset losses. Plus, new customers don’t provide testimonials. Existing clients can be nurtured to be engaged more deeply - case studies, references, speaking opportunities, etc. 

  • Kristi Faltorusso
    Kristi Faltorusso Member Posts: 45 Expert
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    edited May 2020

    While I love the points that Jeremy and David brought up, it's also about driving efficiency and maximizing the value from your current resources. Go tell your CFO that you believe you can do more with less. I've been successful in pitching and advocating for CS solutions in all of the companies I have worked for. While there are ROI questions that have to be addressed, if you have completed a top-down and bottoms-up analysis of time allocation to create proper leverage ratios for your team, you should have the data to support this. If you tell your CEO or CFO a solution could ultimately save you to the cost of a head as you scale, you may have a compelling case. 

    Things to avoid: Going to your CFO and asking for budget without being able able to articulate how this will be used to save money or make more. If you can't explain why you "need" it, maybe you don't.

  • Andreas Knoefel
    Andreas Knoefel Member Posts: 74 Expert
    First Comment
    edited May 2020

    I have seen both sides of this Goldilocks challenge: 

    Too soon, before the processes, playbooks, roles, metrics are built out enough, and a CS leader hopes that a(nother) tool will do the trick. Unfortunately, it’s garbage in, garbage out and the tool and the CS team fail.

    Too late, when the CS team is bogged down with too many menial and manual tasks to collect and aggregate data from multiple systems, and the Redbull consumption per capita triples.

    I used these checks for my business case to the CEO and CFO to introduce a technology:

    1. A mature and cohesive set of processes, playbooks, …: At several startups I faced individual excellence when I joined, and had to rally the team around a common set of best practices.
    2. I estimate how much time my team spends on activities that could be automated and overlay this with a projected staffing plan with and without automation
    3. I look at the incremental gain vs managing another tech. I was faced with multiple CRM, CS, VoC, Support, Project, Data Analytics... , systems, each a fine tool, but as a combined solution an absolute nightmare, and ultimately trimmed the technology without sacrificing the customer experience, retention or team workload