Managing Business Case
Project management best practices recommend that, in many circumstances, a business case should be established for the project.
The key sections and components of a business case may be: executive summary, reasons, business options, expected benefits, expected dis-benefits, timescale, costs, investment appraisal and major risks.
There can be different approaches with different levels of complexity.
Business case as a document and information
The business case is managed as a document. As such it is stored in the Documents section of the project (see document management guide for more information). Some information (e.g. background and reasons) may also be copied and recorded in project specific fields (e.g. Objectives and Background and Reasons in General section).
Business case as a project milestone
In this scenario a project milestone is used to store the information about the business case and its approvals. A project milestone category (General/Projects/Milestones) could be created to classify business case reviews. The business case document is stored in the project milestone Documents section and its information could also be copied and recorded in project or project milestone specific fields.
The Status of the project milestone (e.g. "Executed") and its Result (e.g. "Ok") may represent the status of the business case approval.
Business case managed through a workflow
A third and more flexible (although more complex approach) is to manage the business case (and its approval) through a workflow. This requires that the SM - Service Desk and Service Management module is activated as a prerequisite. This allows to manage all the business case information and related process steps although it requires a specific configuration.
Business case elements and how to manage
See the table below to learn how this elements could be arranged within itmSUITE®.
|Business case element||How to manage|
|Business case document and approval||The business case information and approval can be managed according to one of the previously described alternative approaches (as a document, via project milestones or via workflow).|
|Executive summary||This information is typically managed with General section fields Objectives and Background and Reasons or in the business case document itself.|
|Reasons||This information is typically managed with General section field Reasons or in the business case document itself.|
|Business options||This information is typically managed in the business case document itself.|
|Expected benefits||This information can be managed in the business case document itself. A high level description of the benefits could be included in the General section field Reasons. However an alternative approach is possible by defining and using a specific workflow to manage the benefits lifecycle. However, this requires the SM - Service Desk and Service Management module and the configuration of the workflow. Customized reporting can be designed and implemented using the REP - Reporting module.|
|Expected dis-benefits||See expected benefits.|
|Timescale||This information can be managed in the business case document or with a dedicated one.|
|Costs||This information can be managed in the business case document or with a dedicated one.
If the business case is managed as a project milestone, the cost information can be saved with an estimation related to the project milestone. Customized reporting can be designed and implemented using the REP - Reporting module.
|Investment appraisal||This information can be managed in the business case document. Some Key Performance Indicators (e.g. Earn) are available in together with the estimation which can be saved with a glossary. Customized reporting can be designed and implemented using the REP - Reporting module.|
|Major risks||This information can be managed in the business case document. See also project risk management guide for alternative options.|