Are we cashing in or selling out by joining the ROI debate?

Could you attach a pound, dollar or Euro sign to the work your function does? Should you even be expected to do so? Or is to ask the point of spending money on communication and engagement to entirely miss the point?

With budgets being at a premium, it’s almost inevitable that internal communicators be expected to  join the ROI party. Many functions now have to do more with less, so why should comms be exempt?

I’d suggest that whilst it might be hard/impossible/unnecessary to prove the case, depending on your viewpoint, the cost of doing nothing, of ceasing all communication is clear enough for everyone to see.

If empirical evidence, or old-fashioned commonsense isn’t enough, disconnect the phone, take away the PCs, shutdown the channels, ban conversation and see what happens.

Or do the human capitalists have an Excel that makes the point in a more sophisticated and credible way?

6 Comments

  1. “Only a fool knows the cost of everything and the value of nothing”

    I’d love to hear from a finance function that has had to justify it’s ROI.

    Justa thought.

  2. “Only a fool knows the cost of everything and the value of nothing”

    I’d love to hear from a finance function that has had to justify it’s ROI.

    Just a thought.

  3. Or an HR department.

  4. On a similar note, I’d like to hear from a finance function that has a KPI against how well it communicates.

  5. I’m not in favour of generating spurious ROI numbers overall, it tends to create hostages for the future.

    Still, for me, the problem with this post is that too few internal comms depts provide the phones, or the PCs or interact much with more than a tiny portion of the office conversation.

    And to pick up chrisnewstead’s point, if the finance function does have a KPI for communication, does the internal comms have anything to do with helping it measure/achieve that KPI? (Too often not.)

  6. I’m not in favour of the rush to produce spurious ROI numbers. In my experience, it just creates hostages for the future.

    Still, the problem for me with this post is that too few internal comms/corporate comms depts are actually involved in things like the phones, the PCs or the conversation in the office.

    Or to pick up on chrisnewstead’s point, too few IC depts are involved in helping the Finance function measure or improve performance on a comms KPI.

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