As we’ve discussed before, an online company store is one of the most effective ways to implement an automated purchasing process, which can add substantial value to practically any business. But no matter how grand your visions of streamlined, quick-and-easy procurement, it won’t amount to anything if you can’t get the right people on board.
Here are a few of the most effective ways to persuade key decision-makers and get organizational buy-on for an online company store.
One of the biggest traps people fall into when pitching a big idea like an online company store is that they get so caught up in the minor details and execution that the core benefits fall by the wayside. Make sure that whoever you are presenting the idea to can easily identify the expected impact for the company. Will an online company store save a considerable amount of time and reduce purchasing costs? Of course — so make sure the higher-ups know it!
If key decision-makers don’t understand how an automated purchasing process and online company store contribute to achieving business objectives, they’ll be reluctant to invest in the idea. For example, in addition to streamlining the purchasing process for employees across the company, an online company store can ensure consistent branding across offices around the globe. This has a direct impact on international brand awareness, which contributes to a better brand reputation and, ultimately, business growth. Make sure to identify the business objectives that most resonate with your target audience, and then highlight the benefits of an online company store in those terms.
Another key benefit of an online company store is its impact on the relationship between internal stakeholders. When an office places an order that ends up being delivered late, or includes the wrong items, company-wide cohesion can suffer as a result. This effect is even more pronounced when the procurement manager in question is swamped with requests from the entire organization. An online company store effectively eliminates these bottlenecks and reduces the risk of mistakes being made, which in turn leads to happier employees, better relationships, and a more unified company.
Last but not least, it’s important to put some effort into how you present (not only what you present). The language and messaging in your presentation should always be clear, concise, and purpose-driven. If something doesn’t add value or supplement a certain point in some way, it’s probably a good idea to cut it. Also remember that a visual representation of what the online company store might look like will give your audience a far better understanding of its simplicity and usefulness than a mere description.