A business case captures the rationale behind initiating a proposed project or activity. It’s frequently presented as a written document, although it can also come in the form of an oral presentation or informal discussion. What makes a business case different from other documents is that it is written to show what the project will result in as well as why it was initiated. A business case is typically an executive summary detailing the project’s main aspects, such as its expected impact on the organization and the time it will take to realize those effects. In some cases, the report is prepared to address funding issues.
The major part of the business case deals with justifying the initiation of the project, especially as regards its financial aspects. The business case can illustrate ways to cut costs associated with implementing the project, and it may include a breakdown of its costs, with a particular section relating to long-term costs. The evaluation of the project’s potential returns should also be included. These can include the expected revenue generated through new projects and the associated operational costs.
When making business case includes a revenue projection, it is important that these projections are clearly stated in the document. In addition, the projection should acknowledge any possible downside risks to the project, which can be highlighted in the table of contents and detailed methodology. Likewise, when preparing the document, it is important to address the negative or positive assumptions about the project and highlight the reasons why these assumptions were made. These should be stated in detail so that readers understand what is meant by the projections.
Another aspect of business case is related to how it relates to personal life. Usually, it includes personal details, such as project risk, implementation costs, return on investment, and impact on personal life. Project risk refers to the chance that the project may encounter unforeseen problems or difficulties. Implementation costs can be projected out over time, while a balanced view of the return on investment can highlight the benefits and minimize the risks, if any.
Lastly, a good business case provides a means for the project sponsor to articulate its key benefits. These benefits need to be outlined in simple but eye-pleasing language. The benefits need to be able to be understood by team members and stakeholders. Similarly, it should provide an overall view of the project, including what the project sponsor expects to gain from the project. It is useful to consider ways to quantify the key benefits, including monetary and non-monetary, and make these easier to understand for team members and stakeholders.
A good business case is essential for managing projects. It helps to manage project risk and identify the right solution. It can be used as a requirement for obtaining project approval, or as a guide for creating business case analysis and business case template. It can illustrate project management best practices and show why some approaches are better than others. Finally, it can provide a way to communicate benefits clearly to team members and stake holders, reducing ambiguity that can lead to misunderstandings and delays. In the end, a good executive summary can help project managers and executives understand the project definition, planning and development, and funding models for a business case.