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A Look Inside Our Microsoft 365 Business Impact Whitepaper

July 27, 2021
4.5 min read
A Look Inside Our Microsoft 365 Business Impact Whitepaper
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As is typical for many technologies used at the enterprise level, building the business case for Microsoft 365 usually comes down to three simple words: Return on Investment (ROI). Executives and technology evangelists alike constantly search for ways to quantify ROI, providing tangible proof that the money put into these technology solutions produces a worthwhile and measurable payback.

Of course, Microsoft 365 is not immune to the fundamental laws of economics. Suppose the technology does not help increase company revenue, improve employee productivity, or cut expenses. In that case, few executives will commit time and resources to deploy or invest in improving adoption and usage.

Our recently updated whitepaper is designed to provide practical advice for leaders who want to put Microsoft 365 to work but wrestle with the challenges of justifying its value after deployment.

A Look Inside Our Microsoft Whitepaper

This blog will only provide a glimpse at the various sections of the whitepaper. For full details, download our Microsoft 365 Business Impact Whitepaper.

The following are the sections from the whitepaper that we will take a look at:

  • Measuring and improving business impact
  • Understanding and aligning business objectives
  • Business Impact by Microsoft 365 capabilities
  • Business Impact Examples

Measuring and Improving Business Impact

There are a few key considerations for determining and measuring business impact.

1. Identify ways Microsoft 365 can drive business impact.

  • Just knowing that there is an impact is the first step.
  • This whitepaper is meant to address and accelerate this step.

2. Measure the business impact.

  • This should be done before Microsoft 365 technologies are implemented, while adoption/usage is being improved, after and during investment activities or as new capabilities are introduced.
  • Within this whitepaper, we have provided suggestions for how you might approach measuring some of these business impacts.

3. Take proactive steps based on the measurements and insights shared.

4. Measure the business impact.

5. Repeat steps 1-4.

Gain a greater understanding of these key consideration for determining and measuring business impact in our whitepaper.

Understand and Align Your Business Objectives

For a technology investment to be relevant and for key stakeholders to care about that technology, it is critical to show that the technology positively impacts helping realize important business objectives.

It is often challenging to map the technology solutions and uses we have for technology to business objectives. This is difficult for two key reasons. The first reason is that most business objectives are not specific enough, clear enough, or detailed enough. The second reason is that it can be difficult to visualize the relationship in a way that key stakeholders will immediately recognize.

This “mind map” was developed using Mindjet Mind Manager

The image above is a visual example of how these platitudes (or meaningless objectives) might break down into something that has meaning to the organization and also an example of the insight waiting for you in our whitepaper.

Business Impact by Microsoft 365 Capabilities

This subsequent section will outline examples of business impact and how they correlate to key apps and services provided by Microsoft 365.

At this time, we have mapped examples and correlations between the following technologies:

Discover our mapped examples and correlations between all of Microsoft 365 in our business impact whitepaper.

Business Impact Examples

The following are categories of business impact that Microsoft 365 influences. We have included suggestions for measuring each one. Our intention with this approach is to help organizations understand that these benefits can be quantified. Also, it may not be as challenging, thanks to the richer availability of data and insights from the Microsoft 365 platform.

Throughout these measurements, it’s important to understand that each customer is unique.

Here are a few high-level suggestions when you calculate your own ROI:

  • We often calculate real-world numbers using estimates for the inefficiency of productivity or cost transfer as not every resource that gets time back will be able to apply it to productive benefits for the organization at the same efficiency level.
  • Never do single-point estimates. A range is extremely valuable as it communicates confidence. If it helps, consider creating a low, medium, and high value for each if a range won’t work for your decision criteria. Even with further discounting for risk, if the low value is a favorable investment with a good return, that should be enough for the business decision.
  • Measuring over time is important. We are cautious about doing multi-year ROI calculations where we don’t discount the benefit over time since digital patterns, industry patterns, and your own employee patterns change over time.
  • Keep track of all your assumptions. If someone disagrees with your calculations or is not confident in them, you can always input different assumptions or let them experiment with your model (Excel is great for this). Disagree with the suggested salary or cost of the employee? Just change those values to create more variations or professional perspectives on the ROI parameters.

Isn’t it time you Understand the Impact you are Having?

All corporate champions of Microsoft 365 deployment want to prove how the technology can pull its financial weight. The path to achieving this lies in understanding the variables that impact ROI evaluation.

Some of the metrics discussed in our whitepaper may vary based on how you use Microsoft 365, but the economic principles remain the same. The economic principles boiled down to: Identify the business value generated by Microsoft 365 deployments and measure it against the costs of implementing these technologies or improving their usage.

Uncover what you should be focusing on with the help of our 50+ page whitepaper on measuring the business impact of Microsoft 365.

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