After the novelty of finding this SO section wore off (and being rightfully shamed of asking a duplicate question), I'd like to rephrase this question so it would target what I feel is a gap in answers currently available:
What is the most efficient way of communicating the need for UX focus as part of the existing dev process and/or corporate values?
Currently (for the past N months) the managerial response has been along the lines of "we're looking into it but we have no available resources for the foreseeable future". This is especially frustrating in the ultimately end-user-driven field (think outsourced online banking with blows and whistles), where more engagement means more commission.
These answers seem to lack specifics of an efficient approach that is likely to succeed. Putting together relevant numbers is a time-consuming task (unless you're making things up :) and we do not have the functionality in place to track things like "25% of the users give up on the application half-way" or "50% of the users do not visit the site more than once a month and when they do, they only check their balance because the main menu is unusable"
- do you put in extra effort in the current role and hope that the benefits introduced would prompt inclusion of a formal UX team in the future?
- do you gather relevant data and put it together into a presentation that covers UX in-depth and finishes with something catchy like "every $1 spent on UX now would give the company $10 over the next two years in increased revenue?
- do you focus on more trivial, less scientific, but marketable points like "UX is hip, clients will throw money at us if they learn we have a UX department"
- do you focus on the competition A, who already has a UX department and seem to be doing great?
- do you engage the team to the point where everyone is excited about improved usability and starts paying it more attention on an existing project - with the intention of adding a formalized role to the department in the future?
On top of the points above, would you do research/trial build on your own time or try and convince the management of the need to dedicate a couple weeks to research now, so as to have accurate data that the ultimate decision could be based on?
In my mind, an efficient approach means minimal wasted effort (both personal and company time) to achieve the goal (conception of a UX team in a function-driven environment)