Get User Input Now to Prepare for Budgeting Season

If your company’s budget cycle is months away, you might be thinking, “Is it too soon to think about budgeting season?

In a word: No. It’s not too soon.

If your team relies on any third-party providers and subscriptions, now is when to review when your agreements renew, and how much advance notice you need to provide if you want to make any changes to your contracts.

Once you’re armed with information about how much lead time you have to make decisions that will impact your budget, you may want to think about the additional inputs – including research – that may impact your budget plans, so that you have time to gather those inputs ahead of the deadlines.

Obviously whether your contracts are based on number of users or some other usage metric, you want to take a look at any concrete usage data that is available.

Then we recommend you consider moving beyond usage to perceived user value.

If your company charges back the cost of the subscription to the user teams who can add or remove users at will, then relative value of the subscription may be built into the process. But if your subscriptions are more centralized, we suggest you think about getting feedback from the users and user groups.

  • How many of them actively use the subscription (and/or different elements of the subscription)?
  • How much value do they put on what it delivers?
  • How much do they rely on that resource vs any alternatives that may exist?

We have seen teams leverage this kind of input to validate their budget allocation for the coming year, to renegotiate their vendor subscriptions to reduce their budget expenditure on that line item, or even to inform internal campaigns or training to promote greater adoption and usage, so that the expenditure provides maximum organizational value.

The more you know, the better position you’ll be in when it comes time to plan out your budget for next year – so consider how gathering user perspectives now could help you prepare for the decisions you’ll be making then. If you’re not sure where to start, our team is happy to help.

Coming Up: Quantitative Research vs Qualitative Research

Next time, we’ll explore research methodologies, and when to use Qualitative or Quantitative research methods. Subscribe to make sure you don’t miss an issue.

Do you have a question about market research? Post a comment below, and it may make its way into a future post. Do you have a question you hope to answer with market research? Contact our team at Coax Insights. We’d be happy to help.

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