What’s important to your CFO (or equivalent decision maker)? How do they want to be seen in the company? What are their KPIs? What drives them – pure financials or do they also look at increasing efficiency and reducing risk across the organisation? Think about your relationship with them and see if you can find a ‘way in’.
CFO’s are numbers people so talk in their language. Have a think about how much time is spent on putting project lists together, informing insiders of their obligations, tracking who has/hasn’t confirmed, chasing those who haven’t, version control and any other aspects of managing your lists that take up your time. Saving this time would allow you to focus more time and energy on more strategic aspects of your role for example improving the way board packs are put together or putting together a strategic report.
The literal time spent is one thing but also risk reduction. That nagging feeling in the back of your mind wondering if you clicked ‘save’ instead of ‘save as’. Carry out a stress test. If the FCA came calling for your insider list on any date, would you be able to provide the data, would it be accurate and how long would it take to pull together the information?
Ultimately, you will need to put together a strong business case. This should include: the benefits of the system, the risk (and potential cost) of not having it, what your peers are doing and the cost. Finding the time to do this isn’t always easy which leads to delays in implementing a system that can help you.
At this stage there are two ways you can ask a provider to help. The first is asking one of them to pull a business case together for you, we often do this for clients. They will have all of the relevant information. You’ll then have a draft that you can work on, saving you a significant amount of time.
The second is asking them for a free trial of the software to see how it would fit into your organisation. You can then take the results in terms of time-saving and risk reduction and integrate them into your business case as proof to your CFO that it would improve your performance.