5 Steps for Writing a Successful Business Case for MFT
One area that lots of customers need assistance with is building their business case for Managed File Transfer. Whilst each organisation’s approvals process is unique, we see some common themes. Below are five key steps or suggestions to how to build a successful business case for Managed File Transfer.
Consider all the stakeholders
It goes without saying that the needs of each Line of Business are different and are likely to be distinct from the project drivers from IT. Marketing need to be able to send large files simply with the correct corporate branding. Legal require all files to be signed for. Procurement want date stamping to ensure all tenders were received within specified deadlines. End users would prefer to use consumer grade solutions that they are familiar with. IT are generally looking for scalability, manageability, speed of install, security and visibility. The business case for MFT can address all of these issues and more.
Managed File Transfer is often the glue between corporate systems and there is often no natural owner within an IT structure. An executive sponsor can help to overcome any objections to change from end users and ensure cross team support for a project that will impact networks, database teams, IT security and more.
All our vendors have white papers designed to address specific business issues such as PCI Compliance or GDPR. There are also reports on the benefits gained by existing users of MFT, which can be used to frame your business case. The Ipswitch report for example suggests that the key reason for implementing MFT is to improve productivity and this is supported by a Globalscape report that suggests MFT implementation can increase your file transfer capability ten fold without increasing your IT support.
Cost Vs Benefit Vs Risk
Whilst the costs are generally easy to identify, benefits can be harder to quantify. Key areas to investigate include savings associated with scripts that can be quantified. For example, experienced staff built the legacy scripts and are often involved with troubleshooting any issues as a result. MFT simplifies not just the creation of scripts, but also on-going management. MFT can also reduce the number of trouble tickets relating to the movement of files and the time it takes to locate the issue.
As well as direct cost savings, there are risks associated with data breaches or failures on customer SLAs. Research based on existing MFT users, show that implementing solutions can improve the satisfaction of internal and external partners and reduce their reliance on IT, thus improving productivity.
Lots of customers start with a very high level set of criteria that can be met by almost any MFT solution. To ensure you get the right solution, you need a more comprehensive set of criteria. Our Needs Analysis services can help to clarify functional requirements. It is also important to assess the total cost of ownership including support costs, training, documentation and upgrades. As the use case for MFT frequently expands post-installation, the scalability of the solution and options for additional features now and in the future are also important components of your business case.
There are some more detailed notes in our Expert Guide to Managed File Transfer and we have a library of white papers from research companies and vendors available upon request.