A business case is not used as a business plan in that it is used in the assessment of the potential market opportunity, unlike a business plan that encompasses an assessment of the probable business opportunity at the company level. Business plan, unlike the business case, assesses the void that exists in the industry and can be entrepreneurially filled, unlike the business case which is the assessment of the lucrative, lasting as well as the sizable market problem.
A business case encompasses a document that outlines the specific justifications that account for the start-up of a project. In the attainment of the issues that are targeted in the business case, it encompasses a description of the chief business problem or the opportunity that is prevalent in the business. It ensures that there is the listing of the accessible options for the delivery of the solution that is going to be resolved the problem. The benefits as well as the costs are additionally outlined about their association with every option (Harvard Business School Press, 2013). There additionally is the recommendation for the solution option ion the approval as an attribute that supports the completion of the business case. In that case, it is right to assert that a business case encompasses an argument that is documented and whose intention is in convincing a decision maker to approve a certain type of action. The chief rule in the drafting of the business case is that it is imperative that it articulates a clear path to the attractive return on investment.
A business case is made of a collection of attributes that aid in ensuring that it attains its intended objective of ensuring that the decision maker is convinced of the benefits that are attained from the completion of a certain action. These elements contained in the business case include:
The Executive Summary
The section encompasses the development of a summary of the main reasons for the development of the business case, entailing the definition or opportunity that is behind the development of the business case. The section will offer the funding body with the background of the issue at hand that informs the development of the business case. The next attribute that is included in the executive summary is the solution alternative that encompasses the enumeration of the diverse alternatives that can be adopted in solving the problem or delivering the opportunity (Sheen & Gallo, 2013). The recommended solution as the next item in the executive summary encompasses offering a solution to the attainment of the opportunity or resolution of the issue. The last item that is included in the executive summary is the implementation approach that offers a plan the project executors will use in ensuring that there is the successful completion of the proposed solution.
The Business Problem
The Environmental Assessment
The section offers an outline of the chief attributes of the business environment that have derived the necessity of the project taking place. The attributes in the environmental assessment include the business objectives and vision. It additionally encompasses the business processes that are operating inefficiently, the identification of the new competitor processes or products, the new technological trends and changes to the statutory, environmental and other legislative requirements (Sheen & Gallo, 2013).
The Problem Assessment
The section offers an outline of the fundamental business opportunity or problem that the consequent project addressed directly. In the case of the problem, it encompasses the assessment of the generic of the chief issue at hand, the rationale for the existence of the problem, the issues that create the problem as well as the impacts on the business (Gambles, 2012). The assessment of the business opportunity encompasses the description of the summary of the generic opportunity, the supporting evidence that proves the opportunity is tenable. It additionally encompasses the assessment of the timeframe within which the opportunity will be eminent and the positive impact that is going to result from the realization of the opportunity in the case of the business (Gambles, 2012).
The Available Options
The section of the business case offers an assessment of the entire list of the solution, their costs, benefits, feasibility, and the risks as well issues that are prevalent following the execution of the opportunity or solution. The assessment of the options encompasses doing something, nothing, and something that is going to attain an identical solution of undertaking something that will promote the attainment of a superior result compared to the contemporary solution (Gambles, 2012). Minimization of the number of options is realized by undertaking a detailed feasibility study before the implementation.
The Costs and Funding Plan
The additional component of the business case is the description of the tangible as well as the intangible costs that the company is going to incur following the implementation of the project. It is imperative that there is the inclusion of the actual costs of the project as the acquiring equipment along with the possible negative impacts that the company will incur as a result of delivering the project. The chief categories, in this case, should encompass the people, physical, marketing as well as the organizational (Remenyi & Sherwood-Smith, 2013). The feasibility section entails the description of the solution’s feasibility. In the success completion of the section, the feasibility study should be initiated with the objective of quantifying the possibility of attaining the desired project outcome, breaking the solution down into the constituent components.
The risks section offers a summary of the most apparent risks that are associated with the adoption of the solution. The risks encompass any event that could adversely impact the ability of the solution attaining the desired deliverables. The assessment of these risks encompasses such categories as environmental, strategic, operational, financial, industrial, technical, and competitive as well as customer related solutions (Remenyi & Sherwood-Smith, 2013). The issues, on the other hand, present a summary of the highest priority issues that are associated with the adoption of the option. The issues addressed, in this case, encompass the possible events that currently impact the ability of the solution to attain the preset deliverables. Once the business case has been approved, every issue needs to be formally recorded and consequently tracked via the use of an issue management processes, forms as well as register.
The assumption section entails the chief sections that are associated with the implementation of the option, with such assumptions as there is going to be no changes in the business strategy, legislative during the implementation of the project (Sheen & Gallo, 2013). The recommendation section involves the comparison of the chief attributes of every solution option and consequently recommends the preferred solution option that supports the implementation.
The option rankings sections involve the identification of the criteria through which every solution option is evaluated. There is the consequent agreement on the rating mechanism for every criterion to ensure that the ratings are added for the determination of the overall score for every option.
I selected this business case template it offers the richest assessment of all the attributes and components that encompass the development of a successful business case enough to warrant total funding. The assessment that is outlined in this business case template offers a reliable assessment of all the issues and components that a business case for funding must meet.
The three business cases I have evaluated include these three, with the best one being highlighted in italics;
Gambles, I, (2012). Making the Business Case: Proposals that Succeed for Projects that Work. Gower Publishing, Ltd.
Harvard Business School Pressm, (2013). Developing a Business Case. Harvard Business Press
Remenyi, D &, Sherwood-Smith, M. (2013). IT Investment: Making a Business Case. Routledge.
Sheen, R. & Gallo., A. (2013). HBR Guide to Building Your Business Case Harvard business review guides. Harvard Business School Pressm, (2013).