Effective Business-Case Writing

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An effective business case must be well written, interesting, to the point, and able to communicate a message to the reader effectively.


EFFECTIVE BUSINESS-CASE WRITING


n effective business case must be well written, interesting, to the point, and able to communicate a message to the reader effectively.

Successful business cases are supported by three key processes:

proposing

The proposing process provides standards and methods for building and submitting good business cases.

selecting

The selecting process defines the decision makers and the process they use for funding projects.

tracking

The tracking process monitors the investment value of the project by comparing its actual value with that forecasted by the business case.

Sam, a project manager for a clothing company, is preparing a business case. With the key processes in place, Sam's business case benefits as follows:

Proposing

Because he is following the proposing process set out by his company for preparing a good business case, Sam's proposal ensures that he will receive a fair hearing.

Selecting

Sam identifies the key decision makers for business proposals in his company, and familiarizes himself with the process they use for approving funding for projects.

Tracking

Sam includes in his business case a forecast of the value of the project, for comparison with its actual value when it is implemented.

Failure to implement effective business-case processes can have adverse effects on your company's business as well as on your business case.

Proposing

Failure to implement a defined proposing process can mean that investment proposals with high potential value are overlooked in favor of low-payoff options, because there is no process to encourage an accurate business-case analysis. The business then loses out on returns on investment.

Selecting

Without a good selection process, good business proposals may be ignored when politically powerful decision makers push through an inferior alternative option. The lack of consistent selection criteria results in good investment options being ignored.

Tracking

Failure to implement a tracking process can be detrimental when an approved project fails to meet its targets during implementation because its scope was modified during rollout. The new scope negated value assumptions outlined in the original business case, and the shortfall was not noticed in time to revise the project targets.

"Nicely written business case, John, but I've no idea how this proposed time-management system is going to affect productivity. And how much will it cost anyway?"

It is pointless to write a business case unless it includes effective, pertinent, and useable information, and unless the proposal aligns with company objectives.

It's essential to research your business case thoroughly, so that all costs, benefits, assumptions, and potential constraints of the project are fully investigated.

If you research your business case well, and align it with business processes, you are more likely to

  • persuade decision makers that your project should be selected
  • secure the resources you need

After the initial rejection of his business case, John decided that some extra research was needed. In particular, he looked at the costs and benefits associated with the time-management system.

He tracked how the implementation of the system could be tied directly to the company's bottom line, and illustrated this in the business case.

John's business case was successful when he resubmitted it. He was awarded all the resources he required to implement the system, which significantly increased productivity in the company.

QUESTION

Why is it important to research your business case and align it with business processes?

  1. You will ensure significant benefits for the company
  2. You are more likely to persuade decision makers that your project should be implemented
  3. You will increase company productivity
  4. You are more likely to secure the resources you need

The benefits of a project to a company will become apparent only when the project is implemented.

Researching your business case enables you to answer questions regarding the costs, benefits, assumptions, and potential constraints of the project.

Your business case on its own will not boost productivity, but it can describe how a proposed project may do so.

A business case that includes effective, pertinent, and useable information, and that aligns with company objectives, is more likely to be approved for funding.

Successful business cases are supported by three key processes: proposing, selecting, and tracking. Failure to implement effective business-case processes can have adverse effects on your business.

Researching your business case thoroughly and aligning it with your company's business objectives makes it more likely to be selected by your company's decision makers.

In this lesson, you will find out what needs to be researched before writing a business case, and how to determine whether a proposed project aligns with corporate strategy. You will also learn how to determine the best angle for a business case, and how to identify the information that should be included.


I have been teaching and training agents, team leaders, supervisors, managers and admins of call centers and other businesses in BPO related fields. This series, comes as a result of that experience. I have more than 4,000 modules that I plan on sharing here. This is # 007-06