Six ways to loosen purse strings for necessary investments

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Hide your wallets and tie your purse strings tight - the macroenvironment is taking a downturn and we need to reduce spending. But hang on, you might argue some things warrant spending. Well I’m not talking about replacing perfectly good laptops just to have the newest and latest. I’m talking about investing in technology your company needs to keep innovating and growing so it can win. We all know that when purse strings get tightened it can be hard to pry them open and often you end up stuck with over-bloated, complex legacy software. That’s why spending (smartly) on business software is necessary - as technology is a key ingredient that contributes to a company’s revenue and profits.

Here are six ways to convince decision-makers to continue investing in critical business functions.

Prasad Ramakrishnan

Prasad Ramakrishnan is the Chief Information Officer and Chief Information Security Officer of Freshworks

1. Empower your workforce with modern solutions

One of the key factors that determine business success is employee and customer experience (EX and CX). Investing in modern EX and CX solutions can empower your workforce to deliver better services and products, leading to higher customer satisfaction, loyalty, and ultimately, revenue growth.

To do this, make things easy for your employees by using an intuitive ITSM tool that requires minimal training, is customizable to IT and non-IT business processes, and lets your employees focus on what matters most - getting things done with streamlined and efficient workflows.

2. Leverage intelligent automations and generative AI

The use of intelligent automations and generative AI can help to reduce manual workloads, cut costs and improve overall efficiency. By investing in these technologies, businesses can free up resources to focus on value-added activities, driving growth and innovation. Streamline, automate and simplify your business processes - all while delivering a consistent service experience to your whole organization.

Generative AI capabilities can help customer-facing professionals work faster and smarter. Customer service agents can respond quickly to customers and employees with the right tone and flawless grammar. Marketers can compose compelling copy in less time, and sellers can create emails that turn prospects into customers.

3. Maximize existing service desk investments with one vendor

Businesses often make multiple investments in different service desk solutions, leading to complexity and higher costs. By consolidating investments into a single vendor solution, businesses can streamline processes, reduce costs and increase efficiency. AI in ITSM tools brings further improvement opportunities across quality, speed and cost. As low-code and no-code platforms continue to enable the technology, we’ll see more maturity, time savings, fewer errors and faster development.

4. Think heavy on value and light on cost

Even the economic slowdown can’t stop businesses from spending on IT. Research by Gartner predicts that overall enterprise IT spending is expected to remain strong – even grow 2.4%. So, when building a case for ongoing investments, it's important to focus on value rather than just cost. By demonstrating how continued investment in critical functions will generate long-term value, decision-makers are more likely to be convinced. Explore software that helps you realize rapid time-to-value, and lowers your total cost of ownership with transparent pricing. Look for tools that have no external consultant fees for implementation. Choosing software should not be influenced by big brand names, like buying cologne. It should be based on business needs and the value it brings in terms of features, costs and efficiency.

5. Cut spending on bloated software contracts

Many businesses spend a significant amount of money on bloated software contracts that are not fully utilized and can contribute to killing the bottom line. By identifying and cutting unnecessary software expenses, businesses can free up resources to invest in critical functions that generate real value. Use this moment to renegotiate prices, optimize terms and consolidate contracts. Make sure you're getting value out of your software without the added costs or unnecessary features.

6. Spend on software that can grow with you

When evaluating software solutions, businesses should prioritize those that are scalable, easy to use, and affordable. By investing in software that can grow and adapt with the business, employees will be more productive and the business can remain competitive in the long-term. This will help ensure that you are consistently using the latest features that you need and cut down on training for your employees. It’s still important to audit your software and unload features you don’t use.

The case for continuing critical investments requires a focus on value, efficiency and innovation. By investing in modern EX and CX, leveraging intelligent automations and generative AI, maximising existing service desk investments, cutting unnecessary expenses, and exploring scalable, easy-to-use, and affordable software solutions, businesses can remain competitive and drive growth even when the macro is down. The right business technology is worth loosening those purse strings for.

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Prasad Ramakrishnan

Prasad Ramakrishnan, CIO, Freshworks.