5 key principles for writing a strong business case

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Purpose of the Business Case

The purpose of the project Business Case is to:

  • substantiate the funding request (or change) for a project
  • provide a reference to justify the approval and prioritisation of a project allowing comparison across business units
  • ensure stakeholders are committed to all aspects of the project
  • provide the fundamental foundation for managing the project.

A full Business Case will be required for gaining authorisation to proceed where:

  • the project cost is over a specified value
  • the project requires funding from central investment pool
  • the project requires resource from a particular business unit /area for an extended period
  • the project has significant impact on other functions/ areas/ projects

Scope of the Project Business Case

The Business Case covers sufficient detail to enable a decision to be made to agree funding and commence a project. Sufficient detail should be included to define all project objectives. The methodology and controls are drawn into one document set, owned by the Project Manager, which provides a baseline for the whole project. This also provides critical messages for both internal and external communications.

This document is aimed at giving the reader all information required to assess project viability.

5 key principles for writing a strong business case

Use plain language. Consider these points when writing:

  • Think of your audience, put yourself in the shoes of the reader
  • Get to the point
  • Avoid jargon
  • Avoid using acronyms without defining them first
  • Bullet form presentation is encouraged


Business Case overview

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