What are Business Outcomes?

Published December 11 2019 by Patrick Lewis
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“Very few people or companies can clearly articulate WHY they do WHAT they do. By WHY I mean your purpose, cause or belief - WHY does your company exist? WHY do you get out of bed every morning? And WHY should anyone care?” – Simon Sinek, Author, Start with Why

In any business initiative, best-selling author Simon Sinek encourages companies to start with the Why. And then to figure out the How.

Business Outcomes, simply defined, are what you want a technology solution to help you achieve. They are the Why behind the technology. Business Outcomes are used as:

  • A communication vehicle to the extended team
  • Input for roadmap or technology scoping sessions
  • A primary driver for ongoing outcomes discussions and cadence
  • A model for driving and gaining alignment for other initiatives

For example, a company may want to grow with existing customers. What actions are they going to take to move the needle? Business Outcomes must be measurable so that the company knows whether their tactics are effective in reaching their desired Business Outcomes. Usually, they are measured with a lagging indicator, looking at whether revenue went up or down, for example. If increasing revenue from existing customers is the goal, how much do you want to increase revenue and over what time period? A company may believe that more visits to a customer will result in increased revenue. How many more visits will they need compared with today? Does the data show that increasing visits was effective, or does the company need to change course to grow with existing customers?

Want to know more? Read our guide - Top Success Indicator in a New Technology Initiative: The Critical Role of Business Outcomes.

Business Outcomes Drive Sustainable Change

“My advice to future rollout teams: Take a break, go back to the end-to-end review, and make sure that every process is known. Define ownership for every process, and make sure that these are known and agreed upon both within the project team, but most importantly within the organization. It is especially important to address all processes from Lead qualification to how the Dashboards are used and consumed.” — Larry Bowers, Global CRM Project Leader, Aventics

Everything we do at Alithya is focused on Business Outcome realization. It’s not focused on go-live. It’s about realizing the benefits that companies signed up for at the beginning and giving them a path to achieve those.

Aventics was an organization that had failed four times with a CRM implementation before reaching out to Alithya (known as Fullscope at the time), which led the company through the Business Outcomes Workshop. The fresh approach helped Aventics develop a long-term disciplined effort and shared ownership for the success of the initiative and the Business Outcomes the company was working to achieve.

The Business Outcomes Workshop sets a company up for long-term success. We encourage leadership to communicate desired Business Outcomes, stay visible throughout a project before and to stay engaged even after go-live. When the core team within the company demonstrates to leadership what’s been built, leadership can now ask the right questions about whether the tool will help the company achieve their Business Outcomes.

If you want your technology initiative to succeed, Business Outcomes should drive everything, from configuration and implementation, to the data that’s measured and the training that’s offered.

Ready for your business outcomes workshop? Let us know here.


As the Director of Business Outcomes and CRM Success, Patrick has more than 25 years in customer relationship management. He’s worked across Manufacturing, Professional Services, Sports, and Financial Services industries. Patrick’s primary areas of focus are organizational change management, and business process.

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