Microsoft Power Platform has emerged as a game-changer, empowering businesses to unleash their true potential through its low-code/no-code platform. With the ability to build applications, automate tasks, streamline processes, and harness the power of artificial intelligence, Power Platform offers a multitude of capabilities that can revolutionize business operations. However, harnessing the full potential of Power Platform goes beyond its features and functionalities. It requires a strategic approach to measure and quantify the business value it brings to the table. Understanding the impact, business value, and return on investment (ROI) of Power Platform solutions becomes critical to ensuring long-term success.
When measuring the business value of Power Platform, we can explore two key perspectives: IT benefits and the value derived from the applications built upon it. From an IT standpoint, the Power Platform presents a wealth of advantages. It allows organizations to reduce development and maintenance costs by enabling citizen developers to create solutions without extensive coding knowledge. This shift from traditional development empowers businesses to operate with greater agility and efficiency as they:
- Reduce third-party license costs.
- Reduce technical debt.
- Reduce overall development and maintenance costs.
How to measure the business value of Power Platform solutions?
As organizations leverage Power Platform to develop custom applications, tracking and measuring the value these solutions bring to the business becomes essential. This requires a comprehensive approach that considers factors such as cost savings, increased efficiency, improved customer experiences, and accelerated time-to-market.
In this blog, we will delve deeper into the methods and strategies for effectively measuring the business value of Power Platform solutions. By understanding the IT benefits and the transformative power of the applications it enables, you will gain valuable insights to help you unlock the full potential of Power Platform and drive success in your organization.
Let us consider the business value drivers that Power Platform solutions directly impact:
- Performance improvement
- Direct or indirect cost savings
- Risk mitigation
- Business transformation
How to measure the improvements that Power Platform solutions have brought to the existing processes. We can consider the following metrics
Time and cost savings
We can calculate the time and cost savings achieved when implementing an automated process. A simple comparison of the time taken to finish the task prior to and after automation and the costs inclusive of labor, materials, and equipment will suffice. You can calculate the savings in terms of hours saved per week/month, cost savings per task, and error reduction.
Reduction in error
Assessing the error rate is also an effective way to measure performance improvement. Since automation is developed especially to diminish errors, tracking the number of errors before and after implementation is another key metric to track improvement in performance.
By comparing the output achieved before and after implementation, we can assess the improvement in productivity. Simple metrics, such as the total number of finished tasks or the quantity of work produced in a given period, help quantify productivity.
Now comes the question of how to calculate the significance of the new application for risk mitigation. Let us find out how:
Reduction of risk
Firstly, we can identify the risks to be mitigated via the application. You can track the cases related to the risks before and after implementation. Calculating the financial repercussions of these incidents and comparing the costs before and after implementation will let us know the savings in risk reduction.
Considering that the new app is designed to enhance compliance, we can measure the impact of the app by determining the compliance rate prior to and after the implementation of the app. Identifying regulations that the app is required to comply with and tracking the compliance rate over a period of time will let us capture the app’s value according to this metric.
Incident response time:
You can assess how long it takes to locate an issue’s root cause and how long it takes to fix it before and after implementation.
We can measure new applications and solutions’ effect on business transformation using a set of KPIs (key performance indicators). The ideal metrics vary depending on the application or process used as well as the objectives of the business transformation endeavor. Here are some common approaches:
Improvement in efficiency
By comparing the time taken to execute a task before and after implementing the app, you can evaluate the improvement in efficiency brought about by the solution.
Increase in revenue
You can calculate the impact on revenue before and after implementation and gauge the impact.
You can assess employee productivity by tracking the time taken to finish a task or by measuring the output produced.
Total cost of ownership
The total cost of ownership (TCO) is the measure of the purchase price of an asset summed up with the costs of operations- giving its long-term price or TCO. You can evaluate the TCO for an internal or in-house system- by summing up all the expenses incurred during the system’s lifetime, including ownership, operation, and maintenance. For instance, you can sum up the staff, hardware and software, replacement, energy and cooling, maintenance, and downtime costs. You can then compare these costs to the cost of Power Platform.
Enterprises can estimate the impact of the new system/process on the employee experience using a variety of methods such as surveys, analytics, interviews, and focus groups. The enterprise can measure this metric in business transformation by having an overall picture of employee experience/satisfaction before and after the new system is implemented.
There are several additional measures to calculate the business value of Power Platform solutions. Brand reputation, employee skills, and capabilities, ability to innovate, time-to-market, competitive advantage, employee satisfaction, diversity and inclusion, accessibility to people with specific needs, sustainability goals, and more are some of the measures. An enterprise can assess the tentative values of these metrics before and after implementing Power Platform solutions. For example, a relevant question regarding the measure ‘ability to innovate’ can be: “Will the new solution enhance our ability to innovate and produce new products/services?”.
Adhering to the enterprise KPIs and OKRs
In order to optimize the effects of these solutions, it is crucial to match the business value of Power Platform solutions to the enterprise’s KPIs, objectives, and key outcomes (OKRs). Organizations can ensure that their Power Platform solutions meet the most crucial business needs and have the most impact by anchoring them to KPIs and OKRs. This ensures that top leaders and decision-makers, frequently in charge of authorizing resource allocation, view Power Platform solutions as worthwhile investments. There are numerous tools and calculators to help in this regard.
Centre of Excellence Starter Kit- Innovation Backlog
Microsoft Power Platform has this Centre of Excellence Starter Kit, which includes the Innovation Backlog- a tool to help organizations to manage and prioritize creative ideas for Power Platform applications. It includes a collection of suggestions and ideas made by stakeholders and employees that can be conducive to enhancing business processes, boosting productivity, and sparking innovations. Moreover, it offers an excellent starting point to assess the true business value of solutions. The Innovation Backlog also ensures that creative ideas are noticed.
In conclusion, the actual measurement of business value for Power Platform solutions is paramount. The measurement offers invaluable insight into these Power Platform solutions’ contributions to the overall organizational success. It allows organizations to evaluate their investments, support digital transformation strategies, and uncover opportunities for process improvement, task automation, and resource optimization. By actively measuring this value, organizations can make informed decisions that drive efficiency and long-term success.
If you are looking for a technology partner to help you implement Power Platform solutions, then you are at the right place. At Saxon, we also offer interactive and innovative workshops such as Microsoft Power Platform Immersion Day. You can learn low-code app development and drive innovation by unlocking the potential of Power Platform.