Business Case

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Definition:

The business case is a document that explains how a project’s benefits overcome its cost and why it should be executed. The business case document is created during the project initiation phase to give different stakeholders the reasons to invest in a particular project. It contains the financial appraisals, proposal, strategy and marketing plan. Using this document, you can present your project to other stakeholders and convince them to invest in your project. If all the stakeholders approve your business case, your project can go to the next phase.

Business Case

When a company or an individual is planning to start a new project to achieve some business goals, they should consider all the factors affecting the project’s success. Before investing large amounts into a project, the company or the project manager should work on identifying whether a project is worth investing in or not. Secondly, if the project is feasible, how much money should be spent on it and what the users or the project owner will get after completing this project.

A document covering everything mentioned in the above paragraph is called a business case. In addition to previously stated data, the business case also presents the business benefits of the project and gives a reason to the stakeholders to invest in the project. It includes all the costs and financial information, proposals, strategy and marketing plans. The project can develop if a business plan is strong enough to convince all the stakeholders. But, if the stakeholders do not like or approve the business plan, the project will not be successful.

Elements of a Business Case:

A business case is composed of various elements:

Executive Summary:

Gives a quick overview of your business case to all the stakeholders. It summarized all the parts of your business case.

Project Definition:

This is a brief definition of your project. It answers what your project is and what business objectives would it address.

Vision, Goals and Objectives:

This part explains your vision, goals and objectives that you want to achieve by a project. It helps you in defining your project scope and identifying the deliverables.

Project Scope:

This section explains what is included in the project and excluded from it. It determines the tasks and deliverables needed to achieve a goal.

Background Information:

Explain the problem your project will address and how it aligns with the organization’s strategic goals in this section.

Success Criteria:

Provide all the standards that the final product must fulfil to determine the success of your project.

Project Plan:

This part briefly explains how a project will be executed. It defines the tasks needed to complete a project and their timelines (when a certain task must have been done).

Project Budget:

The project budget estimates all the costs you will be paying during the project execution.

Project Schedule:

Defines the timelines, i.e. when a project is started, when it is expected to end, how long it will take, how much work will be done each day, what tasks will be performed at what time, and so on.

Project Governance:

Define all the rules and processes you will apply to govern your project. It also defines the roles and responsibilities of all the team members.

Communication Plan:

Identify how the project team will communicate while keeping different stakeholders up-to-date about the project status.

Progress Report:

Explain how you will track the progress of the project and the performance of your team members.

Financial Appraisal:

Identify all the financial needs, including the project costs and explain how you will fulfil the financial needs.

Market Assessment:

Assess the market, competitors and industry to identify the opportunities and threats.

Competitor Analysis:

Research about your competitors and their position in the current market.

SWOT Analysis:

Perform the SWOT analysis to identify your organization’s strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats.

Marketing Strategy:

Explain different ways that you will be adopting to promote your product.

Risk Assessment:

Identify all the risks associated with your project and ways to mitigate those risks before they become problems.

How to Write a Business Case?

It is a concise yet detailed document that defines the project’s what, why, how, and who. Here are the steps to write down a strong business case:

  • Research about the current market, competition, and product alternatives that you will create in a project.
  • Choose and finalize your business management approaches after comparing various approaches.
  • Analyze the data and present your strategies, goals and plans to other stakeholders.
  • Document everything for future reference.
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