Budgeting your salesforce projects as Income instead of Expense

One of the challenges as project managers and executives is to budget for each year and allocate funds for your salesforce team to deliver their projects each calendar year. The challenge has been this traditional IT thinking of treating every project as an expense and resource as cost which never would help to explain the value of your cost spent on salesforce projects. I attended a dream force session on project management which showed me more light on how to do this for my projects.  The solution is to create a portfolio based project management approach instead of traditional projects.

1. Categorize your projects into different value added buckets.

Each project in salesforce falls into the following categories.

a. RTE ( Run the engine regular maintenance)

b. Sustain( Minor enhancements and improvements to make life better)

c. Growth( Reduces time spent, increases revenue , reduce cost type)

d. Transform ( New way of doing business like mobile, digital channels, social media etc)

Categorize all your projects into these 4 buckets. Now the easy ones are the RTE and Sustain which are the most type of projects. e.g Salesforce releases, upgrades to the org, integration connectivity fixes are e.g of RTE projects. Sustaining projects are improving visual force pages to reduce number of clicks, adding field to a report or dashboard to show more data ,  adding more roles, security changes which are done to support ongoing changes.

2. Showing Income on Salesforce projects.

The big things you need to attack is the growth and transforming projects. For e.g if there is a new report or dashboard which you build for the executives and let us say it takes 2 hours per salesmanager to create it now, it will save you 10 hours of time per month for say 5 managers. This when extrapolated to a year is 120 hours of saving. If the cost of the manager is say 50$ an hour which you can get it from HR, you are saving 6000$ a year of cost to the management as an example.

Another way of showing increased revenue is lead scoring and lead assignment rules kind of a project. Let us say you are implementing a new lead scoring system where a certain type of lead shows up in the salesperson in the queue first and if the sales person calls the lead first thing in the morning and closes the deal and let us say on a yearly average, these kind of leads bring 50,000$ in revenue, this is a new revenue which the company gets after implementation. You would have to dig down deep with your business folks on quantification and get the amount or percentage change in the pipeline which can be quantified to a near revenue.

3. Budgeting the yearly amount for Salesforce.

Now once you budget your projects for next year, you would have the growth and transformative projects bringing revenue and the sustain and RTE projects eating your cost. So let us say at the end of the year the revenue was 200,000 and the cost which is your employees  salary is 150,000 as an example, your ROI IS 33% which 50,000 /  150,000 .

4. Helps to focus on the right projects for a calendar year.

As you create a portfolio for your projects, if you create the portfolio for the current year and calculate the man hours spent on each category, you would find where you currently stand on your implementation.  E.g  RTE projects is 30%, Sustain projects i 50%, Growth is 15% and Transform is 5%, you would see that you are not focusing your resources hours on the growth and transform which would bring down your ROI.

So now you can plan to allocate a percentage of time for the next year and focus more on growth and tranform which would increase your ROI with salesforce tremendously.

I have several frameworks which i use to show business value on my salesforce projects and i can share that with you. Please feel free to post your comments or email me at buyan@sforcemaximizer.com and I will be glad to answer further questions.

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Author: buyan47

Hi there! My name is Buyan Thyagarajan. I am a Salesforce consultant specializing in Higher Education, Manufacturing and Marketing Automation. My blogs will help you to maximize your Salesforce CRM investments, prevent problems beforehand and make the right decisions. If you need to talk to me right away, you can email me at buyan47@gmail.com or call me at 302-438-4097

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