As an HR Leader, it can be a struggle to get a new HR or operations project approved, especially if it involves asking for new technology. It's critical to ensure you're building a solid business case to expand your organization's HR solution footprint. Jot down these three tips below to get you moving in the right direction — these may just be the key to securing the approval you need.
1. Think like a CFO
While Chief Financial Officer (CFO) might not be your role, it may be time to strap on a new pair of shoes and start thinking like one. When you're looking at your HR project, consider what the business side will say and how you can answer questions such as:
- What return on investment (ROI) will the business see?
- What processes will be automated as a result of this project, and how will that impact the bottom line?
- What business pain points will be solved?
- What risks will we help to mitigate or eliminate by implementing this project?
2. Understand how your company makes money
If you understand the activities that generate revenue for your company, you can figure out what business initiatives your HR project ties to and how it will benefit the organization.
If your organization has an annual report, review the previous year's goals and the goals for your current fiscal year. Then look at the HR technology you're evaluating and determine which business goal you can tie it to.
For example, ask yourself if the business is looking to:
- Improve customer experience and retention
- Increase revenue
- Reduce operating costs
- Gain more customers and expand the market share
There are many more examples, but the point is aligning your HR project to a business goal like these will demonstrate how necessary it is to get budget and approval because it directly impacts the health of the company.
3. Calculate the risk
What will happen to the business if your HR technology initiative doesn't get approved? Will customers start to look elsewhere? Will employee turnover impact a significant contract and damage your brand and reputation? Will you face major fines if you can't meet compliance standards? Will you start losing revenue to the competition because you can't find enough employees for open jobs? Will health and safety be put at risk?
Asking hard questions such as these can bring more weight to your HR project and increase the likelihood of approval.
Conclusion: Make your case with confidence
It's time to give your HR team and your organization the tools and the confidence to work smarter and more seamlessly and give your employees the kind of modern experience they expect. These three tips are just scratching the surface of how you can effectively communicate your needs to business leaders and executives at your organization. If you'd like to learn more, check out our guide to executive communication for small HR teams — it's full of practical insights on how to get leadership buy-in and even has some worksheets built in to help you organize your thoughts.