How to Wow the Bean Counters

  • Get the requirements right. When you thoroughly analyze and understand business processes, you can pinpoint exactly where improvements should be made, dramatically upping the chance of developing a system with high payback.
  • Don't release until it's ready. The best way to instill confidence -- and ensure fast adoption -- is to release a system that's bug-free. You can't get returns if no one trusts the system.
  • Get to know users. Spending lots of time with users increases IT's understanding of what they need to boost their productivity -- and the system's ROI.
  • Rope in top execs. When your project hits the inevitable bumps in the road, you need the buy-in of the top brass to smooth the way.
  • Experiment. You should implement systems with known ROI, but it pays to apply some resources to R&D. That's often the source of surprising big-bang returns.
  • Do the math. Go in with hard ROI numbers and audit them along the way.

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