From TCO to VOI (Value of Investment)

We have a pretty good handle on TCO (Total Cost of Ownership) issues in my district, but still don't have good answers about whether or not we're getting a good return on our investment in terms of impact on student achievement. How do we measure this in quantifiable ways?

To business people, what you're asking about is called Return on Investment (ROI). With increasing pressure to justify all technology expenditures, educators are beginning to explore ways to measure what they're calling Value of Investment (VOI). This issue has become so important that the Consortium for School Networking (CoSN) has launched a new website called Value of Investment Leadership Initiative.

TCO and VOI complement each other. TCO looks at costs related to the installed technology environment and VOI looks at the possible costs and benefits of technology projects. By developing projections in both areas, educators will have a much better handle on the success rates of various technology initiatives and the associated costs.

Submitted by: Susan Brooks-Young

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