Five simple steps in making a successful HR tech business case

Celine Haffner LACE HR Tech specialist
Celine is a HR Tech specialist at LACE Partners

At LACE Partners, we often work with clients to set up a new programme of work or piece of HR tech. This often starts with the development of a strong business case for the change. So what makes a successful business case? I've identified five easy steps and have listed below.

Forget the business case!

We know this sounds whacky. However, the first element you should focus on when talking about a HR tech business case isn’t the numbers, it’s the “problem statement” – or in other words “why are you making the case for a new tech?”

There are a couple of questions you must answer first:

  1. What is the problem you try to solve?
  2. What business outcome(s) are you trying to deliver?

Are we talking about quantitative outcomes like increasing HR efficiency by 5% over the next 24 months? Or we talking about qualitative outcomes such driving the talent agenda, for example?

Make friends

The second critical element is to create a business case that will be appealing for sponsors or champions from within the business and the functions.

From our point of view, the ideal scenario is co-sponsoring. For example, CHRO/ CIO or CHRO/ CFO will be a strong combo to back your case up and make it successful in the long-term.

But it might not always be that simple. At a minimum, we suggest finding at least one strong C-Suite representative within your organisation who fully supports your business case.

As Jerry would say… “Show me the money”

Do not underestimate how critical it is to quickly address the funding question and understand where you expect the funds to come from for your HR tech business case.

From the outset, find out: how the budget is set, what the budget cycle is, where you stand in this time frame, who the ultimate buyer is and who the decision makers are. There is nothing worse than building a beautiful business case only for the bank to be shut.

Keep the receipts aka measure the success

How you will define the measures of success attached to your business case? What we mean by that is your aptitude to clearly define how you will spend your money and how you will achieve the outcomes of that business case.

Think of these three major points that will help you with measuring success:

  1. Driving value into the business – what are you changing?
  2. Bringing control - project spend vs. budget allocated, for example
  3. Enhancing the controls and governance, and reducing risk within your organisation

Tell the story, prepare to celebrate success

Last but not least, the success of your business case will be based upon the way you will talk about your remarkable story throughout.

Once you’ve decided who your audience is, the messages you would like to share and when you will share them, you will be able to realise the power of repeating THE story over and over. A clear communicated story will help you to constantly loop back to the problem statement and embark your colleagues, stakeholders or dissidents on your journey.

Remember to celebrate success all the way through. Celebrate small wins as much as big ones. Celebrate milestones, achievements and failures in the same way.

The sole purpose of a tech business case is to demonstrate the business rationale for investing in a new HR platform and to convince the most influential sponsors to embark on your journey. If your key stakeholders share a clear common understanding of the destination you’re trying to reach and you’ve got someone prepared to fight your corner when times get hard, you’re already on the path to success.

If you'd like to have a chat with Celine about your HR tech business case then get in touch on 07591 685 893 or email celine@lacepartners.co.uk.