IT leaders are entrusted with the not-so-easy job of allocating spend on IT investments that will only yield high return on investment (ROI). With greater pressure from upper management for high ROI, IT execs and decision makers must bring every new idea to the table with full confidence.

As we approach the new year, you may be considering sharpening your company’s 2015 collaboration strategy to achieve a number of competitive advantages such as improved content, knowledge, and project or workflow management. If so, you must prepare a targeted pitch explaining to your C-suite why you believe your organization’s coveted IT budget should be spent on enterprise collaboration.

As employees who have pitched to their company’s top decision makers know, this is no easy feat. Take a breath and prepare yourself with these four supporting arguments to get your decision makers on board:   

  1. The ROI is there: Collaboration can get dismissed by the C-suite because it involves new-aged technologies, like social media, and out-of-the-box strategies they believe do not yield high ROI or are too difficult to measure for ROI purposes. But research shows otherwise. For example, data aggregated by Erik Qualman, author of “Socialnomics,” shows the “ROI of social media” is that your business will still exist in five years. In other words, while the dollar figures may not be available, without an investment in social media now a company may no longer be viable within five years. The overall ROI of the collaboration tools your company implements will be demonstrated by their impact in terms of workforce productivity and how much time they save compared to traditional business processes. Perhaps these are not standard ROI measurements but, nevertheless, they are valuable components of any business and should hold water with savvy company leaders. 
  1. The market is exploding: As we all know, numbers don’t lie. According to MarketsandMarkets, the enterprise collaboration market is expected to reach $70 billion by 2019. The pundit’s research also shows that telephony solutions account for the highest market share in this space. Research also shows that 86 percent of businesses are expected to use collaboration tools in 2015 to enhance business processes. Even if you’re not using collaboration tools, the numbers show that your competitors likely are, and that’s certainly not a secure position for your company. 
  1. Collaboration is not that daunting: “Enterprise collaboration” may seem like a complex activity that eats up time and resources, but your organization can begin its collaboration venture one step at a time. For instance, you can begin simply by deploying one mobile application for sales or by moving just one application from your legacy infrastructure to a cloud-based environment. You will still have full control over the process and can move at your own pace, which will better complement your budget. 
  1. Partner with an IT vendor; offload burdens and tap into expert resources: In today’s economy, you will be told that every hard-earned dollar counts and must be spent judiciously. Your boss may say the company simply doesn’t have the time, funds or resources necessary in-house to spearhead a new collaboration effort—which is exactly where a strategic IT resource comes into play. An off-site vendor can help develop and maintain the collaboration solutions your organization needs to succeed. For example, at AAJ, we have helped develop collaboration portals—both intranets and extranets—to help companies collaborate and share knowledge, automate their processes and streamline their workflows in ways that not only increase productivity, but actually reduce costs. 

Want to learn more about IT outsourcing for enterprise collaboration? Click here to explore what AAJ brings to the table for collaborating on your organization’s success.