As we near the end of 2023, it’s time to shift gears and focus on the upcoming fiscal year. Whether you are finalizing your budgets for 2024 or just getting started, now is the time to think about the road ahead. At Clockwork, we’ve seen how proactive budget planning can accelerate growth and turn ideas into reality. As you think about 2024, consider a strong focus on customer experience (CX), technology, and change enablement.

Why 2024 is a game-changer

The past few years have brought their share of challenges and transformations. 2024 appears to be a pivotal year, promising significant shifts in economic recovery and technological advancements. From what we’re seeing, now is the time to align your budget with the opportunities ahead. 

Customer experience takes center stage

Early investment in customer experience research and design helped many of our clients navigate the pandemic and maintain their competitive edge.  

Invest wisely
: Don’t skimp on customer experience. The better you understand your customers, the better you can meet their needs—and that’s a win-win for everyone. Customer expectations and needs continually evolve, so consider this an ongoing investment to meet your customers where they are (and will be in the future).

Lean on data: Use what you already know about your customers to predict what they’ll want next. It’s the best way to stay ahead.

Ask yourself:

  • How well do we really know our customers?
  • Are we investing enough in understanding their needs and pain points?
  • Do we know how to take those insights into action? 

Technology: no brakes on this train

As you lay the groundwork for 2024, it’s impossible to overlook the breakneck pace at which technology is evolving. In the business world, tech waits for no one—it’s the engine that drives modern companies, pushes boundaries, and redefines what’s possible. The question isn’t whether to invest in technology, but how to do so effectively. Let’s explore why you can’t afford to miss the tech train and what questions you should be asking.

Spot the next big thing: Whether it’s AI or another emerging trend, allocate budget for it now rather than playing catch-up later.

Strategic investment: Ensure your tech budget aligns with your company’s strategic goals. Avoid spending on things that don’t move the needle. Understand your starting point and whether you are ready to innovate or if you first need to stabilize a shaky foundation created by technical debt. 

  • What emerging technologies (e.g., AI, machine learning, cloud computing) are crucial to our industry? How are we budgeting for early adoption and integration?
  • Are we allocating enough resources for both innovation and maintaining existing core systems to ensure a balanced approach to technology investment?

Change management: be ready for anything

Just when you think you’ve got everything sorted, the landscape changes drastically. That’s been the lesson for many of us these past few years. In 2024, adaptability is key. Your company’s ability to pivot and manage change is essential for long-term success. From sudden market shifts to new opportunities, let’s explore how including change management in your budget planning can make your organization more resilient and agile. Clockwork’s approach to change enablement puts the people that matter—your customers and your employees— front and center to successfully deliver process and technology innovation.

Budget for flexibility: Things change. Your budget should have room for that, whether it’s an unexpected cost or a new opportunity that you just can’t pass up.

Stability matters: While chasing the latest innovations is exciting, remember to allocate budget to maintain the systems and practices that keep your business running smoothly.

  • How are we integrating change management principles into our budget planning to ensure organizational agility?
  • What measures are we taking to balance innovation and stability within our budget? How are we preparing for potential market shifts?
  • Are we considering potential risks and uncertainties, and how does our budget reflect a readiness to adapt to unforeseen changes?
  • Do we have the right people and processes in place to support innovation?

Need guidance?

In short, 2024 is a significant opportunity if you play it strategically. As you crunch those numbers, ensure you’re planning for a future that’s flexible, forward-thinking, and in tune with your customers.

If you’re feeling overwhelmed or just want to make sure you’re on the right track, Clockwork can help. We specialize in everything from customer experience research to front- and back-end development to change management. And, we’re all about setting you up for success in 2024.

We’re excited about the year ahead!