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6 Steps to Building a Persuasive Business Case for Your ITSM Software Purchase

• 22 Jun 2023

An effective IT Service Management (ITSM) tool is a vital component to manage your IT operations, enabling your organisation to evolve and grow. Obtaining buy-in from multiple stakeholders for the procurement of an ITSM tool can present challenges, but with the right approach and considerations, it can be achieved.

Building a business case for buying ITSM software involves outlining the costs and benefits of the investment, demonstrating the value it will bring to the organisation, and making a case for why it is the best option for meeting the organisation's ITSM needs.

Here are some steps to consider when building a business case for your ITSM software purchase:

Step 1: Define the problem

Clearly articulate the current challenges faced by the organisation's ITSM processes, such as manual processes, lack of visibility, or slow response times.

It can often be useful to interview both the process providers and the customers to understand the current user experience from all points of view.

Step 2: Identify goals

Clearly define the goals that the organisation wants to achieve by implementing ITSM software, such as improved efficiency, increased customer satisfaction, and better risk management. If possible, define the high-level process workflows required to deliver improved user experiences based on the feedback from step 1.

Graphic showing a lightbulb

Step 3: Evaluate the options

Research the different ITSM software options available and evaluate their features, functionality, and costs.

Key criteria to consider are user experience (which will determine ease of user adoption), the integrations required to external systems, and a prioritised list of detailed features based on a MoSCoW (Must Have, Should Have, Could Have, Won’t Have this time) analysis.

Step 4: Conduct a cost-benefit analysis

Outline the costs of implementing ITSM software, including the cost of the software, implementation, and training, and compare this with the expected benefits, such as increased efficiency and customer satisfaction.

When conducting a cost-benefit analysis, it is important to consider the following factors:

  • Costs: Include all direct and indirect costs, both monetary and opportunity costs.
  • Benefits: Include all direct and indirect benefits, including both monetary and non-monetary benefits.
  • Timing: Consider when costs and benefits will be incurred and received, as this will impact the overall net benefit of the project.
  • Uncertainty: Consider the potential range of outcomes and the likelihood of each outcome.
  • Alternatives: Consider alternative options, including doing nothing, and their associated costs and benefits, in order to determine the best course of action.

Step 5: Make a recommendation

Based on the research and analysis, make a recommendation for the best ITSM software option for the organisation and provide a detailed explanation of why it is the best choice. Your cost-benefit analysis recommendation report should include:

1. Introduction

  • Brief overview of the purpose and background of the analysis
  • Summary of methodology used

2. Costs

  • Description of direct and indirect costs
  • Timing of costs and uncertainty analysis

3. Benefits

  • Description of direct and indirect benefits
  • Timing of benefits and uncertainty analysis

4. Net Benefit Analysis

  • Presentation of net benefit, including cost and benefit summary
  • Discussion of results and significant factors

5. Alternatives

  • Description of alternatives considered
  • Comparison of costs and benefits for each alternative

6. Conclusion

  • Summary of results and recommendation
  • Additional considerations and implications

7. Appendices

  • Supporting data and calculations
  • References and glossary of terms used

Step 6: Obtain support

Before and after delivering the recommendation report, engage key stakeholders, including IT leaders, business leaders, and end users, to understand their needs and gain their support for the ITSM software project.

Common Pitfalls

When putting together a business case for buying ITSM software, there are several pitfalls to watch out for, including:

  1. Underestimating the costs: ITSM software can have hidden costs, such as implementation, training, and customization. It is important to consider these costs in the business case and to have a realistic understanding of the total cost of ownership.
  2. Overstating the benefits: It is important to be realistic about the benefits that an ITSM tool will deliver and to avoid overstating the potential impact. This can lead to unrealistic expectations and disappointment when the results do not meet expectations.
  3. Ignoring the risks: ITSM software implementation can be complex and risky, and it is important to consider the potential risks and to have a plan in place to manage them.
  4. Not considering change management: Your ITSM tool can have a significant impact on the organisation and its processes, and it is important to consider the change management implications and to have a plan in place to manage the transition.
  5. Lack of stakeholder engagement: Your proposed purchase affects many parts of the organisation, and it is important to engage key stakeholders to gain their support for the project.
  6. Lack of alignment with IT strategy: ITSM software should align with the organisation's IT strategy and support its overall goals and objectives. It is important to ensure that the ITSM software being considered supports the organisation's IT strategy and provides a path to achieving its goals.
  7. Not considering the long-term: ITSM software can have a long-term impact on the organisation and its processes, and it is important to consider the long-term implications and to have a plan in place to support the ITSM software over time.


In conclusion, building a business case for buying an ITSM tool requires a clear understanding of the organisation's ITSM needs, a thorough evaluation of the available options, and a detailed analysis of the costs and benefits of the investment.

By following these steps, organisations can ensure they are making an informed decision and invest in ITSM software that meets their needs and delivers value to the organisation.