Indeed, research from our latest EQ Riskfactor Receivables Finance Global Outlook shows that a lack of senior stakeholder sponsorship was the main obstacle for lenders looking to implement new technology in the US. 1 in 5 respondents cited this as the biggest challenge, more than any other option, and the second highest of any country surveyed.
Furthermore, securing collaboration and buy in from multiple different departments across the business is key to successfully delivering a transformation project – failure to do so is not only a missed opportunity, but also increases the likelihood that the project will fail.
There are several benefits to this approach:
- A strategy endorsed at the top level of the organisation brings confidence and empowerment to the employees tasked with delivering the project
- Senior buy-in often means employees strive to work harder and produce better outcomes
- Long-lasting foundations can be built when projects match up to the overall strategic vision for the business.
5 steps project leads can take to help engage senior leadership:
- Understand business processes for investment approvals and review recently approved submissions.
Knowing the hoops to be jumped through and the criteria to be met in order to secure investment approval can increase the chances of submissions being granted funding, and heads off any rejection based on technicality.
- Focus on decision criteria such as strategic initiatives, growth, compliance and regulation, or cost reduction.
Aligning proposals to the board’s strategic vision for the company will increase the chances of getting the green light.
- Create a burning platform through a critique of your business incorporating competitor analysis.
Staying static can’t be an option when it comes to technology – inertia means lack of progress, and lighting a fire under the feet of senior leaders by demonstrating the need for change can help to convince them of its necessity.
- Collaborate with and involve internal influencers through cross-functional lobbying to build more advocates for your project.
Especially important when bumps in the road come along – as they are certain to do – internal advocacy can ensure that obstacles are overcome and projects are carried through to completion.
- Evaluate options and present recommendations around indicative costs, timing, ROI, benefits, and challenges.
Taking the time to consider the practical factors involved in delivering the project demonstrates to leadership that project leads have considered the bigger picture around implementation, and have not just proposed an idea without considering how it can be achieved.