When an organization invests in business tools, there’s an immediate dollar amount tied to it and it’s not always embraced by management with much enthusiasm, because how exactly are you going to calculate ROI with it? Especially with rising costs and inflation, businesses need to think twice about what they are investing in. Many tools take years of development and time to integrate it into operations to realize any ROI, but with a tool like Smartsheet, as soon as teams adopt it, the ROI is almost immediate. There are several cost savings to incorporating a tool like Smartsheet and they might not be so obvious until processes, teams and projects start to work more efficiently and become more productive.
According to a research study by KPMG, 70 percent of organizations have failed at least one project in the last 12 months and 50 percent of respondents indicated that their project failed to consistently achieve its goals. While it may be a surprise to some, there are a large percentage of individuals who just don’t understand the value of a project management tool that is full of features that will end up saving you more and costing you less down the line.
Increase productivity with automation
Time is money, right? If you have a team of people working on a particular project and they aren’t working efficiently, that costs you in several different ways. That’s time spent on tasks that may need to be redone because objectives weren’t clear, or the overall goals for the project weren’t clear or set at all. The lack of a clear goal behind a certain project is one of the driving factors behind project failure…because of course how can a team succeed when they don’t know what they’re working to achieve?!
According to Forrester’s Total Economic Impact Study of Smartsheet, automating some tasks and workflows reduced the number of manual steps that users would normally have to take, especially with reporting – which was by 75 percent by the composite organization of the study. With Smartsheet, there are a number of workflows that can be automated with a series of connected actions. For example, project managers can set up workflow templates that can be repeatedly used to alert someone when certain criteria are met for a certain project, date reminders, update requests on certain days of the week, or remind key stakeholders of certain milestones that are approaching within a project. With these automated processes, everyone within the team and even stakeholders now have access to tracking due dates and understanding where a certain project is in the process. Time-tracking is one of the most valuable insights into a project management tool especially when it comes to sending feasible time-to-market estimates to stakeholders. Again time equals money. Using a tool like this can more accurately portray the necessary time that needs to be spent given the number of tasks and dependencies associated with those tasks across the whole team and if there are any delays.
Ask yourself, how many emails do you have to go through a day to keep track of a project’s status or where a project is in the process? A tool like Smartsheet allows project managers or anyone involved to understand what needs to be done and what tasks are upcoming, in progress, or past due. According to the Forrester study, the interviewed organizations who invested in Smartsheet reduced work management-related emails by 75 percent. This type of efficiency is critical when you want to ensure your teams in different departments are working efficiently. Smartsheet provides a single source of truth and insight into a project’s progress or foresight into any delays that might happen because certain tasks took more time than estimated or deliverables weren’t turned in on time.
According to a survey by Wellingtone, 54 percent of respondents don’t have access to real-time project KPIs with one-third spending one or more days manually collating project reports. Smartsheet utilizes KPI dashboards to visually see what the largest expenses are in a project and how certain people in certain roles within the project are progressing. In addition, historical trends can also be added to compare with similar projects to track anomalies or trends that could make an even larger impact within the organization.
Decrease wasted time and increase visibility
According to a 2020 study conducted by the Project Management Institute, 11 percent of all resources in the business landscape are wasted due to inferior processes for project management. A lot of stakeholders don’t always have easy insight into how a project is doing at their fingertips. With a project management tool like Smartsheet, stakeholders or management can look at the visual dashboards Smartsheet offers to easily see the status of any project at any time. Another figure that cannot be ignored that was a result of Forrester’s Economic Impact Study was that over the three-year modeled period, the productivity savings delivered a benefit of $6.1 million. The time savings that were realized allowed project managers to focus on other tasks and allowed them to take on additional work because of it. So not only were savings realized, but potential revenue was gained now that project managers had more time to work with.
Some benefits cannot be measured in dollar amounts, but with client and employee satisfaction. Sure, there’s an onboarding/training process involved, but once the first project is up and running, templates and automations are being used, and employees are adopting it into daily workflows, expectations can be set internally and externally. The value of a project management tool is very subjective when it comes to total ROI, but the increase in productivity and overall accountability will bring teams closer together and work more cohesively whereas before teams may have been siloed (especially if they’re remote) and communication lost in several hundred emails throughout the lifecycle of a project. At a time when costs are only rising to keep operations running, reducing waste and increasing productivity is critical to keep the organization running smoothly and Smartsheet is a great first step that will lead teams down the right path.
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