How to write a business case
Knowing how to write a business case is a critical skill for all business people. If they don’t have it, they have to quickly find someone who does. All the best business ideas in the world will come to nothing if they can’t be put into writing. The written business plan will help get the necessary approvals and resources to bring the idea to life. Writing the business case in a way that attracts the interest of “sponsors” is a real challenge. Essentially, the case:
- promote the business idea to others
- indicate how and why you can be successful
- list expected benefits focusing on financial returns
- seek approval for funding.
The Business Case Outline
- Why is a case being made for a particular project?
- What are the main characteristics of the project?
- What are the business problems and what are the solutions?
- How much is the financial investment?
- What is the duration of the project?
- Would there be any implications in terms of priorities and missed opportunities?
- What are some of the risk factors?
- How will performance or results be measured?
- What happens if the project is not carried out?
- What are the alternatives?
Since the business case would be a full multi-page document, it should include an executive summary. The summary would allow a quick and general overview of the key selling points. The case would then be built on an overall assessment and problem statement. This would be followed by a description of the project, the main solution and its details. It is better that alternative solutions are also identified. A cost-benefit analysis, timeline for implementation along with general conclusions and recommendations would complete the written business case. For better impact, you can include critical assumptions and risk assessment. Also, like a business plan, a Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats (SWOT) analysis would be helpful. In addition to ensuring that the main elements are included, the written business plan should be carefully reviewed and edited. In this regard, in addition to the facts of the business case, special attention should also be paid to spelling and grammar.