Identifying Business Case Functions

in tutelage •  3 months ago

When writing a business case, you should bear in mind its function - what you and the decision maker want the business case to do.


IDENTIFYING BUSINESS CASE FUNCTIONS


A business case gives key decision makers an overview of a project.

It can also help you to secure the resources you require for a project.

When writing a business case, you should bear in mind its function - what you and the decision maker want the business case to do.

A business case defines a problem or opportunity, and outlines the steps that you intend to take to deal with the problem or opportunity.

You use a business case to convince the decision makers in your organization that your project is deserving of resources.

A business case also serves as a project blueprint, which can be referred to throughout the project life cycle to ensure that everything stays on track.

The main functions of a business case are to describe

  • the problem or opportunity facing the company
  • what will happen if the project is not implemented
  • how the project will address the issue
  • how the project will be implemented
  • the resources required to implement the project

Sam is a regional manager for a clothing retail company. Having identified a fall in sales revenue in some outlets on the West coast, he proposes to consolidate some of these outlets to reduce costs.

In his business case, he gives details of the downturn in sales in these outlets. He provides a "do nothing" scenario, stating that inaction on this issue will result in increased costs and possible damage to the company's brand image.

Sam's business case proposes to address the issue by consolidating several West-coast retail outlets into two bigger outlets in prestige locations.

It describes how each phase of the consolidation will be executed, and provides an estimate of the personnel and financial resources that will be needed to implement the project.

The information in a well-written business case can enable the decision maker to do a number of things.

COMPARE PROPOSED PROJECTS

The decision maker needs to compare the recommendations, pricing, and evidence in your business case with those for other proposed projects. She may have to deal with a lot of conflicting information, and may have little practical knowledge of the subject area.

CLARIFY COMPLEX INFORMATION

A business case can enable a non-technical decision maker to understand crucial technical information relating to the proposed project.

MAKE AN OBJECTIVE DECISION

A business case adds objectivity to the decision-making process by providing specific, organized, and detailed information about the proposed project.

Amanda is a senior executive in a software company. She has received two business cases from two IT managers, each proposing a solution for upgrading the corporate intranet.

She needs to compare a lot of information in order to make an informed decision regarding which project to approve.

Because Amanda is not very familiar with the technical aspects of this area, she needs the business cases to explain crucial technical information concisely and without jargon.

Amanda also wants her decision to be objective and based solely on the information provided in the business cases.

Information in a business case should be presented to executives like Amanda in a way that facilitates decision making.

All potential benefits of the project should be summarized in clear business terms. This makes it easier for decision makers like Amanda to evaluate the business case.

QUESTION

You are presenting a business case to your company, a clothing manufacturer, for the outsourcing of particular manufactured components of your clothing products. What are the functions of your business case in this scenario?

  1. To outline the increased revenue to be made from outsourcing expensive manufacturing elements
  2. To describe how the company will lose market share to rivals with cheaper products unless it outsources
  3. To provide technical information about the software requirements of the project
  4. To propose a detailed outsourcing plan to enable the company to retain its market share
  5. To outline the schedule for implementation of the plan
  6. To provide investors with data on projected revenue
  7. To estimate the total cost of the outsourcing project, including staff redundancy payments

The decision maker should be fully briefed on the problem or opportunity addressed by the business case.

This is also known as the "do nothing" scenario and is a crucial element of a business case.

A business case should enable a non-technical decision maker to understand crucial technical information relating to the project.

The business case should propose a solution to a particular problem or opportunity.

The business case should outline how the project team intends to implement the plan.

The business case should provide an overview of a project for decision makers and for the project team, not for investors.

Estimates should include all personnel and financial resources needed to implement the project.

A business case defines a problem or opportunity, and outlines the steps that you intend to take to deal with the issue or opportunity. It can also serve as a project blueprint to be referred to throughout the project's life cycle.

The main function of a business case is to describe the problem or opportunity facing the company, what will happen if the project is not implemented, how the project will address the issue, how the project will be implemented, and the resources required to implement the project.

It can help the decision maker to compare proposed projects, clarify complex information, and make an objective decision.


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 # 007-03

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