Who Does Your EDI Department Sell To?

Posted by Brad Loetz on May 26, 2015 12:44 PM

While it is not likely your IT group has sales people, it is likely that IT resources and business sponsors are required to sell the cost/benefits of project initiatives (capital projects or otherwise) to the CFO, CEO, COO, or project committee.

A CFO is by nature from a financial background, and odds are most other CxO types are as well since they also have fiduciary responsibilities to the organization. In terms of reporting structure the CIO, and staff, most likely report to one of these "C" positions. In many years past the CIO most often reported to the CFO, but in recent years CIOs have received greater peer status in the C Suite.  According to the CIO Magazine 2015 State of the CIO Survey, CIOs report to the CEO 44% of the time and to the CFO 20%, and COO 13% of the time.

Selling financial players in your firm is key to getting your project funded, it pays to speak their language. I was recently reminded of this while reading a sales blog about how to sell the CFO specifically. This blog claimed that CFO speak is somewhat different than pitching the CEO or COO.

Regardless of organizational structure and reporting structure, many projects route through the CFO or similar minded individual, whether they have final approval power or not. So it pays to have a CFO's endorsement concerning your project. Below you will find 6 rules for the IT professional (or any person) to follow when selling the CFO.

#1 Talk the numbers.
#2 Keep it simple.
#3 Make it measurable.
#4 Keep it real.
#5 Get some objectivity.
#6 Set the benchmarks.

For assistance with the business case in selling B2B Integration ROI to your C Suite, download the white paper titled "9 Steps To Building A Business Case For B2B Integration".  And for the full CFO article see 6 Rules for Pitching to the CFO, get your business sponsor, and go sell that initiative!!


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