Selling the Cost of Legal Operations
You are sold! A true believer in the benefits that implementing a complete legal operations management solution like ALOE will achieve. One little problem – your company is so cheap that they don’t even provide pens or other basic office supplies. How are you going to sell the cost of implementing new software and the time expense of training your team to use the software? Now, if you work for a company with a very generous and understanding CFO, who always listens to reason and lets you manage your budget completely independently, you probably want to skip this post and just take your unicorn magic to the next one. For the rest of us, we can use a few tricks for convincing the keeper of the purse strings to show you some love.
Before heading into the lion’s den, know your ROI. What will you get out of implementing the legal operations solution and how will it impact the bottom line? Focus not just on the cost of the solution, but on what you’ll save. For example, a more efficient contract management tool can improve time to revenue by making reducing the number of man-hours required to process a simple contract negotiation. ALOE’s automated reporting can ensure that your sales team knows when their largest customers are getting ready to renew. Reporting can also allow you to streamline your workflows to focus on the highest impact projects and may delay the need for a new head for a considerable amount of time. Try to put numbers to all those factors to present a more quantifiable ROI.
Depending on the political dynamics of your company, it may be beneficial to get a champion. If your high demand internal client(s) has a high enough profile, sell them on the operational efficiencies that will allow your team to serve them quicker, or with more satisfactory resolutions. Or in the case of some of the ALOE workflows, how having systematic gatekeeping paves the way for self-help empowering your high demand internal client to bypass direct interaction with your team completely – while maintaining control of the risk. Alternatively, pitch the outsourcing of implementing and managing these systematic tools to the teams that provide the most support to the legal department. Having your head of sales selling the solution as a win for his sales guys, or the CTO championing it as a boon to his support staff, will ease those purse strings a lot quicker than going it alone.
Most importantly, have confidence in your decision. Regardless of whether you prepare a 5-page report on the ROIs or drop in for a quick chat with the CFO, know that you have done your research and are making a legitimate request for the overall benefit of the company. If you don’t question the move, there’s less of a chance that your CFO will have substantial questions too.