October 8th, 2020
Are you looking to get funding for you Cognos Analytics upgrade (BI) or Cognos Planning Analytics upgrade (TM1) but challenged to get it approved? Maybe you just want funding to get Cognos training on the new Cognos features and functionality. Today I will share how top Cognos consultants overcome objection so you can become more influential and get the approvals and funding you desire.
In order to overcome objection, first we need to identify the top objections commonly seen when we are requesting funding for a Cognos upgrade project, training or implementation project.
Objection 1: Money -
The number one objection for not getting a Cognos upgrade or additional investment approved is lack of budget or funding. Yes, money is tight, budgets have been cut but there are proven ways to get funding. Many people fail to get funding because they fail to build out a Return on Investment (ROI) model. If the financial benefits experienced because of the upgrade are greater than the cost of the upgrade, you have a much greater chance of securing the funding.
For more information on the cost to upgrade and ways to sell your project internally check out our YouTube video, Cost to Upgrade to IBM Cognos Analytics.
You also might like our previous blog on, 5 Steps to Get Project Funding for Cognos BI & TM1.
Objection 2: Time -
The second most common objection is, “we just don’t have enough time.” I fully appreciate how busy everyone is, but as with most things proper planning can significantly reduce the amount of time needed for the Cognos upgrade. If you are on an older version that is not supported currently, you are leaving yourself very vulnerable to having issues when 3rd party tools like Microsoft are upgraded. How much time would it take to try to fix the system if you cannot get support because you are on an old version? If your senior management is saying we do not have time, take a close look at your calendar and try to map out when your team would have time to execute the upgrade. Also, consider upgrading your TM1 or Cognos BI to get on the latest version and to introduce the new functionality. This phased approach has helped Lodestar clients to overcome the time objection.
Objection 3: Lack of Support -
Lack of support from executives is the third reason Lodestar clients struggle to receive funding. But getting support often requires you to find an executive that will greatly benefit from the new functionality and feature and then, ask them for their support. I am always surprised when I ask teams if they asked for executive support, they answer that the executive is busy, and they do not want to bother him or her. Another secret to getting executive support is to find out the strategic goals of the organization and approach an executive that you feel would be in a better position to accomplish their goals if they had the tools provided with an upgrade. Many executives have bonuses tied to accomplishing strategic goals.
For more information on getting executive support, check out our blog, Why You Struggle To Get Executive Buy-In For Your Data and Analytics Projects.
Objection 4: Fear -
Fear is the fourth factor to why clients fail to move forward on their Cognos Analytics and /or Planning Analytics upgrade. Fear of failure, fear of looking stupid, fear of asking for executive support. They all play a role in what holds us back. Imagine if you could overcome your fear, and confidently ask for support, funding, etc.… How would you feel when the executives are impressed with your take action attitude and promote you? You can do this. Be courageous, overcome objection and ask for the funding.
Objection 5: Self-Doubt -
I would be remised if I did not include what I feel is the biggest hurdle Cognos teams have in securing the funding for their upgrade, self-doubt. You know that little voice in your head that says you don’t know what you are doing, or you will never get approval for funding. But what so many people fail to identify is that the voice of self-doubt only appears when you are challenging yourself and your teams. When you are about to have a moment of greatness. It does not appear when you do the same thing you have always done. Successful Cognos managers will tell you, when you find the courage to ask for funding and when you find the time to properly plan your upgrade, greatness begins. What are the first step you can take today to prepare for your upgrade? Go do it.
How to Handle the Objections?
The first step in the process that top Cognos Consultants use to overcome objections to get funding is to identify the reason for the objection like we did above. The next step is to put yourself in the shoes of the person that can approve your request for funding for your IBM Cognos Analytics or IBM Cognos Planning Analytics upgrade. Are they risk adverse? Then you would focus on the risk of being on an unsupported version. If they don’t believe there’s enough benefits for the cost, work on defining benefits and tie them to the strategic goals for the organization.
I believe it is best to write down the objection and the responses, how the objection is a myth or is not true. And don’t forget, timing is everything! If you are just entering budget season, then now is the best time to ask for money. Check out our earlier blog, Have You Secured Funding Yet? It’s Budgeting Season, Secure Funding Now For IBM Cognos.
You Aren't Alone, Email Us
Now that you have identified all the possible objections for why your organization might not approve your Cognos upgrade request, and you wrote down how to overcome each of the objections. The final step is to email us at Services@lodestarsolutions.com and ask for help. Yes, Lodestar Solutions has helped hundreds of clients plan and secure funding for their upgrades. We are happy to help you too.