October 27, 2010

CIOs Doing More With Less

In a recent CIO Update, Jeff Vance wrote a post entitled, 7 Ways to Cut Costs without Firing Your Employees where he talked about cost-cutting solutions that wouldn't make employees grit their teeth and would actually be smart moves in any economy. It challenged CIOs to consider not only cost cutting ideas, but also those that improved productivity.

Here's our spin on some of his suggestions:

Leverage systems you already have -- if you have already committed resources to a document assembly solution, you should get all the value from it that you can. Many corporations and law firms have invested in systems to automate their contracts - they own the licenses, so why not put them to additional use? For no added cost, automate HR/employment agreements, engagement letters, proposals or statements of work; any somewhat repetitive document is a candidate and not only will your employees be more productive, your documents will be perfectly formatted and error-free.

Continue to automate time-consuming error-prone tasks -- Vance says, "look at the documents circulating through your organization... For many companies, document assembly and tracking remains largely a manual, paper-based, ad hoc process. Data from contracts is entered into multiple systems, or, even worse, contracts may simply be dropped into a file drawer leading to error-prone administrative work." If this is the case in your organization, it's time to explore automated document assembly and contract management software. It will improve your documents, reduce your risk, improve your compliance AND free up more staff time for important things like:

Focus on your customers – your existing customers -- Now that you’ve stopped spending time on repetitive document creation, you can offer your customers more face time. By proactively engaging current customers, sales teams can increase their chances of finding additional opportunities that lie beneath the surface and increase chances that the customer will turn to them first when considering additional products or services.

Vance closes by saying , "A word of well-known caution, however: many solutions promise sky-high ROI, but the devil is in the details. Not all vendors are able to back their claims up with anything other than anecdotal evidence." If you'd like to calculate your ROI for a document assembly implementation, try this ROI calculator.

2 comments:

  1. Adine, thanks for alerting me to this post. I was surprised by how much of this advice -- which I gleaned from experts in a number of fields -- could apply to a much more specifically focused topic. Clearly, technology is getting far ahead of our ability to keep up with it. Maybe that's one good that can come from a recession: we're forced to pause, take a look at what we have already paid for and have to find ways to do more with it.

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  2. Jeff, Thanks for stopping by to comment and also for inspiring this post. Technology buyers should definitely work with their vendors to ensure they are getting the most value from any technology investment. Finding additional use cases is a good place to start.

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