December 29 by Kurt Garret

Evaluating and selecting the right enterprise software can be a long and tedious process, but one that shouldn’t be taken lightly. Your choice will have tremendous strategic and financial implications. And if you choose wrong, you will be evaluating solutions all over again.

In a typical software purchase process, the discussion of return on investment (ROI) usually comes late in the cycle, right before the deal closes. But what happens when you move the discussion on return and value further upstream in the sales process?

This value selling approach shortens sales cycles, provides
better deal qualification, improves the relationship with theValue Discovery provider, and creates more conversations around solution value rather than product pricing. That is why it is critical to evaluate, recognize, and measure return on investment to support the business case for change.

Equally critical to when you measure, is the what and how. Combining in-depth interviews with data analysis is the best way to uncover your unique opportunities for impact and the essential financial metrics–such as ROI, Net Present Value,
and Period–to drive your project forward.

Here is a look at the 3 Steps of Strategic Value Consulting that will empower your purchase process and ensure success.

Measuring ROI1. Value Discovery: A Value Consulting project is designed much like a management consulting engagement: up-front project planning and logistics, one or two day on-site meetings with key process owners, and draft document generation based on findings. The documents should provide a comprehensive findings report showing the strengths and weaknesses of the business processes, recommendations for improvement, and a conservative quantified business case. Make sure the process is collaborative, allowing your team to validate the findings
to make sure their results are accurate.

2. Performance Dashboards: Measure what matters to your business. Keep in mind the areas of your processes you seek to improve, and build out personalized performance dashboards that track the business case with Key Performance Indicators (KPIs). This will help you gauge the value of the solution and set up reporting once the project goes live.

Value Drivers3. Realization and Optimization: Your work isn’t done once you make a purchase. After project go-live, drive continuous improvement at the business process level by ensuring the original business case estimates are realized. By taking a snap shot every 6-12 months of your performance, measure the impact and the value realization of the solution. Once benchmarking is completed, it is easy to recognize the areas of improvement to maximize value attainment. This on-going follow-up ensures that processes are optimized and value is realized within your investment.

For more information on how you can uncover opportunities for maximum impact, please visit the Apttus Value Consulting page. Also, be sure to download the white paper 12 KPIs You Should Be Measuring But May Not Know About.

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