Welcome to Part VII of Crossfuze’s Pillars of ServiceNow Success blog series!
Let’s start with a story to reinforce the importance of using analytics to drive strong ROI during your ServiceNow implementation journey: Mark is a CIO who wants to impress the C-suite by implementing ServiceNow at lightning speed. After all, one of the main criticisms he’s received over the years is that his projects take too long and could have been done less expensively. As Mark works to deliver more rapid and more visible results, he spends less time thinking about whether his implementation strategies are delivering bottom-line value. He’s simply moving too fast to baseline, define the right KPIs for success, and put in place the right measurement process to track KPI metrics during each stage of his ServiceNow roadmap.
Mark’s story is unfortunately all too common in workplaces where technology projects are perceived as a costly overhead expense, rather than a strategic business investment with direct impact on the bottom line. For example, in a survey examining organizations’ experiences with their IT asset management programs, an astonishing40% reported that they are not tracking the cost savings associated with ITAM programs.
Crossfuze has worked with hundreds of clients over the years that have learned through experience about why they need to define and track KPIs throughout their ServiceNow implementation journey. Indeed, it takes time and resources to prepare analytics that shed meaningful light on ROI; fortunately, it’s also well worth the investment. These measurements are instrumental in keeping you on track and accountable for delivering the best possible outcomes, no matter where along your implementation journey you happen to fall. And more importantly, being able to provide strong proof of value-delivered results at regular intervals increases C-suite confidence in the value of your ServiceNow vision and roadmap.
How do you develop a KPI tracking and measurement model that will ensure you can report on ROI accurately, frequently, and comprehensively throughout your implementation journey? Let’s explore the key elements to keep in mind:
Baseline where you’re at: The first step to reporting on ROI is to develop a solid baseline understanding of status quo. Part of this process simply involves doing a gut check assessment of how your ServiceNow implementation vision and roadmap might realistically play out when they begin meshing with your entrenched organizational processes and workplace culture. When you can anticipate and foreshadow these on-the-ground realities, you are able to brainstorm opportunities to measure your progress and develop relevant KPIs. This ideation exercise builds on itself, enabling you to better articulate KPIs and refine your understanding of how to define progress.
Draw out what’s most important to your organization: When measuring any ROI, you want to develop metrics for your ServiceNow implementation journey that align with the business strategies of your organization. The best and most direct way to do this is to conduct interviews with all of the folks in your organization whose work will be affected by all of the coming ServiceNow-related changes. When you are able to show strong ROI for their relevant areas, these people become more likely to buy into your ServiceNow vision. The same goes for the C-Suite: You want to directly ask them how they would define success for such an investment to ensure their expectations can be met. If the goals are unreasonable, you want to get everyone on the same page at the outset: The beginning is the time to adjust everyone’s thinking. As you develop the goals, keep in mind that you also will need to develop a strategy for communicating your progress toward achieving these goals, in a way that shows positive momentum.
Link each stage of your roadmap to a desired outcome you can measure: One of the foundational elements of a ServiceNow implementation plan is articulating a roadmap that defines all of the steps you’re taking along your implementation journey. To have confidence you’re staying on track, you want to be able to measure progress at each stage of implementation. A roadmap is particularly valuable for measuring ROI because it requires you to pre-define what success looks like. In fact, it is precisely because you can’t rewrite your roadmap after measuring ROI that your stakeholders are going to trust the ROI measurements derived from your roadmap!
Factor in time to implementation and cost: Calculating ROI involves measuring both the progress you’ve made andwhat you invested to make that progress possible. The “investment” side of the ROI equation absolutely should include your time to implementation and cost. After all, a project that runs over budget and misses its deadlines could still be making progress, but at a cost that adversely affects its overall value and internal optics within your organization.
Budget for the time and resources necessary to run ROI analytics: As much as you may want to direct all resources to moving rapidly through your implementation plan, you want to be proactive about budgeting for ROI measurements from the outset. That’s the best way to ensure you allocate the resources to perform these measurements consistently and accurately.
Proactively guard against project scope creep: During your ServiceNow implementation journey, projects are going to evolve and morph—that’s a healthy and important part of the journey. At the same time, you want to be cognizant of this creep of project scope, because it can easily skew your ROI measurements. Simply put, you want to always compare apples to apples, even when oranges get introduced into the mix.
Too many organizations view ServiceNow as simply a technology expense, which has the unfortunate consequence of dampening enthusiasm for conducting ROI measurements. This creates a catch-22 downward spiral: When ROI isn’t measured, it reinforces the mindset that technology isn’t a contributor to corporate goals, which, in turn, reinforces the perception that implementation plans are not as cost-effective and efficient as they should be. Changing these perceptions starts with measuring ROI accurately, frequently, and comprehensively.
For more customized guidance on how to measure ROI during your ServiceNow implementation journey, consider reaching out to the experienced experts at Crossfuze. We’ll help you zero in on opportunities for measuring ROI that will resonate with the C-suite and other key stakeholders you seek to influence.
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