How to Budget for Salesforce Innovation

October 30, 2018

It’s Autumn–the time for pumpkin-spiced everything, gourd-themed tablescapes, and of course, Q4 budgeting. Just recently, Bluewolf conducted its annual global survey of Salesforce customers, The State of Salesforce, and found that a lack of budget is the leading cause of stalls and delays of Salesforce innovation. It’s time for companies to rethink how they budget for Salesforce. To effectively align Salesforce to a digital business strategy involves investing beyond license costs and services designed to meet individual cloud deployments. Below is a quick-hand guide for how to budget for Salesforce innovation:

Beyond the direct costs of Salesforce licenses, companies need to budget for administration, implementation, innovation, and training costs. In our experience, for every one dollar spent on licensing, companies should expect to spend an additional two dollars on achieving success, making TCO for Salesforce a total budget that is 3x licensing costs.


When calculating ROI, companies often focus too heavily on cost containment. It is increasingly important to incorporate Salesforce’s impact on acquisition, expansion, and customer retention, in addition to cost deflection. One of the largest factors that impact ROI is employee adoption, which is best measured not in terms of login rates, but rather employee experience and engagement.


This simple example attributes ROI over a two-year time frame and could be extended over a longer-term. Because it is 6x to 8x more cost-effective to retain a customer than acquire one, leaders should think of their investment and business impact over a longer period.

To orchestrate meaningful change and drive engagement, leading IT organizations are budgeting differently. Learn more by registering to join our upcoming webcast, Budgeting Beyond Licenses: How to Approach Salesforce TCO.

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