<img alt="" src="https://secure.half1hell.com/195196.png" style="display:none;">

The Productivity Promise: How to Build a Convincing B2B Business Case

Posted by David Svigel on Jan 4, 2024 12:04:00 PM
David Svigel
Find me on:

Blog 20231130 - Productivity Savings

The promise of improved employee productivity when selling B2B technology solutions is often met with customer skepticism. The value of potential labor savings is obvious, whereas productivity improvements are more nuanced. In reality, they work together to build a persuasive business case that secures buy-in.

Labor savings are readily achieved through tactics such as reducing head count, instituting a hiring freeze, avoiding overtime hours, or reallocating employees from one area to another. A deeper dive is needed to uncover where and how productivity can be improved, and determine how to measure its financial impact. By meeting this challenge, you can build a better business case that closes more deals.

Why Customers are Skeptical

These factors contribute to why customers resist meaningful discussion around increased productivity:

  • Productivity gains can be seen as soft benefits that lack a direct and measurable impact on the bottom line. This is especially true when those gains are dispersed across various tasks.

  • Companies may hesitate to take the actionable steps needed to realize promised productivity improvements. Many will resist significant actions such as process reengineering or adopting new technologies because of their impact across the organization.

  • Change of any kind is difficult without employee buy-in. Convincing decision makers of the benefits of actionable productivity enhancement measures can be especially challenging when the decision makers are organizationally aligned with the very employees affected by the change.

  • Organizations may resist change based on historical skepticism if past promises of improved productivity resulted in few tangible or measurable results.

3 Steps to Believable Productivity Improvement

A strategic and systematic approach is essential to addressing these challenges. Take these steps to build a credible business case that instills confidence in your customers:

  1.  Identify and Categorize Improvement Areas
    Enhance the credibility of your financial justification by pinpointing specific areas for productivity improvement and categorizing them by role, process, or department. Discuss specifics such as, “our solution increases network uptime, which reduces the time spent by network administrators on troubleshooting.” This will mitigate any perception that productivity improvements are vague, soft benefits.

  2. Quantify the Impact
    Provide a clear understanding of the scope of improvement by estimating the positive impact on employee workflows, processes, or project timelines. Add substance to your analysis by translating productivity gains into tangible metrics such as project completion time, task turn-around, or enhanced output. For example, a promise of “improve the productivity of your marcom team” carries less weight than “increase your content output by 50 percent using the same team members.”

  3. Apply a Realistic Adoption Rate
    Acknowledge that not all productivity improvements will be immediately adopted. Apply an adoption rate to reflect the gradual integration of new processes or technologies. Remember that position eliminations, job reassignments, and employee training all take time.


Embrace a systematic methodology that incorporates both labor savings and productivity improvements into your business case. This approach will produce results that are reasonable and comfortable for your customers, allowing them to envision the full scope of potential enhancements and feel confident when presenting the business case to key decision-makers. As you navigate the intricacies of estimating productivity improvements, remember that a well-crafted and measured approach lays the groundwork for successful customer buy-in.

Selling Tools Comparison by ROI Selling www.roi-selling.com


Connect with David Svigel on LinkedIn.

Join the Value Selling for B2B Marketing and Sales Leaders LinkedIn Group.

Visit the ROI Selling Resource Center.


Topics: Objection Handling, B2B Selling, Value Selling, Marketing, Business Case, Sales Strategy