1st Edition

Making the Case for Change Using Effective Business Cases to Minimize Project and Innovation Failures

    265 Pages 14 B/W Illustrations
    by Productivity Press

    265 Pages
    by Productivity Press

    The best time to stop projects or programs that will not be successful is before they are ever started. Research has shown that the focused use of realistic business case analysis on proposed initiatives could enable your organization to reduce the amount of project waste and churn (rework) by up to 40 percent, potentially avoiding millions of dollars lost on projects, programs, and initiatives that would fail to produce the desired results. This book illustrates how to develop a strong business case which links investments to program results and, ultimately, with the strategic outcomes of the organization. In addition, the book provides a template and example case studies for those seeking to fast-track the development of a business case within their organization.

    Making the Case for Change: Using Effective Business Cases to Minimize Project and Innovation Failures provides executive teams and change agents with the information required to make better business case decisions. This book can be used throughout the life cycle of the project to assist with gaining a better understanding of the following key knowledge areas for developing a business case:

    1. Understanding the present problem/improvement opportunity
    2. Documenting how the project, program, or initiative will add value to the organization
    3. Validating the data and the assumptions that the projected improvements are based upon
    4. Calculating the level of confidence that can be placed upon the conclusions that are reached
    5. Assessing the alternative solutions that were considered
    6. Weighing the costs vs. the benefits of the proposed initiative
    7. Analyzing and mitigating the risks to completing 100 percent of the project’s goals
    8. Eliciting and prioritizing the requirements of key stakeholders and subject matter experts
    9. Identifying the key people that are involved in the proposed project and the skills needed to implement the proposed change
    10. Obtaining consensus on the decision to move forward, as well as on the methods used and the conclusions specified in the analysis

    Ideal for executives and project/initiative managers seeking approval of an activity, initiative, program, or project, the book presents proven tips, advice, suggestions, and recommended courses of action for developing effective business cases. In addition, suggestions for recruiting a responsible senior officer or sponsor for the project and for engaging an audience are provided.

    The authors combine their own experience in business case development with approaches used by world-class organizations. They provide a general range of assessment criteria that can be applied to almost any type of project business cases.

    The text discusses each of the 8 activities and the 35 tasks that make up the business case development process. This process supplies you with a proven approach for creating comprehensive and well-constructed business case evaluations that will either ensure the success of your project, or eliminate unsuccessful projects, programs, and initiatives before they start.

    Getting Started with the Business Case—Activity 1: Set the Proposal Context and Stimulus
    Preparation Activities (PA): Initiating the Business Case Development (BCD) Process
         Task PA 1: Prepare a Mission Statement and Select a BCD Team Leader 
              List of the Top 20 Attributes of an Effective BCD Team Leader 
         Task PA 2: Understanding the Role of the VPD Team 
         Task PA 4: Creating the Stimulus Blueprint
    Inputs to the BCD Process
    Activity 1: Set the Proposal Context and Stimulus 
         Task 1.1: Create the BCD Team 
         Task 1.2: Preparing the BCD Team 
         Task 1.3: Analysis of Proposed Project’s Input Documents 
         Task 1.4: Does the Proposal Meet the Required Ground Rules to Prepare a Business Case? 
         Task 1.5: If the Answer to 1.4 Is "No," Then Take Appropriate Action

    Activity 2: Define the Sponsor’s Role and Test Alignment to Organizational Objectives
    Activity 2: Define the Sponsor’s Role and Test Alignment to Organizational Objectives
    Task 2.1: Define the Business Case Sponsor’s Role in the BCD Process
    Task 2.2: Align the Project/Initiative with Strategic Goals and Objectives

    Activity 3: Prepare the BCD Team’s Charter and Output
    Task 3.1: Develop the BCD Team’s Charter
    Task 3.2: Define the Business Case Final Report
         Brief Explanation of the Sample Document Elements
         Change Management Action Plan
         Summary of Task 3.2

    Activity 4: Patents and Other Intellectual Property Considerations
    Task 4.1: Is the Idea/Concept an Original Idea/Concept?
         Questions to Ask to Protect against Copyright Problems
         Internal Communications Issues
    Task 4.2: Start The Patent/Copyright Process

    Activity 5: Collecting Relevant Information/Data
    Alignment of Tasks in Chapters 5, 6, and 7
    Resistance to Change
    Implementation Costs
    Task 5.1: Characterizing the Current State
         Product or Service-Related Changes
         Accuracy of Current State Measurements
    Task 5.2: Characterizing Proposed Future State
         Four Factors to Consider and the Common Positive and Negative Impacts
              Estimating the Positive Impacts
         Characterizing Projected Future State for a Proposed Product or Process Improvement Project
         Product Future State
              Characterizing Refinements to a Current Product
              Characterizing the Replacement of a Current Product with New Product
              Characterizing a New Product That Represents a New Product Line
    Task 5.3: Define the Proposed Future State Assumptions
    Task 5.4: Define the Implementation Process
    Task 5.5: Define the Major Parameters Related to the Proposal
    Task 5.6: Define the Quality and Type of Data to Be Collected and Prioritized
         Factor 1: Measuring the Current State
         Factor 2: Measuring the Future State after the Project Has Been Implemented
              Types of Measures
              Data Disciplines
         Factor 3: Collecting Data to Estimate the Proposed Project’s Impact on the Parameters
         Factor 4: Estimating the Cost of Defining and Implementing the Changes to the Process or the New/Refined Product
    Task 5.7: Develop the Data Collection Plan
         Business Case Research Relevance to Data Quality
         Basic Components of Business Case Data Quality
         Problems with Business Case Data Collection
         Business Case Sampling
         On the Cost of Sampling
         Some Business Case Data Analysis Tools
              Tools, Techniques, and Methods Used
              Data Analysis Checklist
              Step 1: Clearly Defined Goals
              Step 2: Operational Definitions and Methodology
              Step 3: Ensuring Repeatability, Reproducibility, Accuracy, and Stability
              Step 4: Sampling, Stratification, and Prioritization
              Tools, Techniques, and Methods Used
    Task 5.8: Collecting Process/Product Installation-Related Data/Information
         Collecting Product Related Data
         Collecting Project/Initiative Implementation Data
         Data Collection Summary

    Activity 6: Projected Improvement Analysis
    Task 6.1: Characterize the Current State of the Parameters Identified in the Tasks Defined in Chapter 5
    Task 6.2: Estimate the Degree of Change That Will Be Brought about as a Result of the Project for Each of the Affected Parameters
         Case Study Number One
    Task 6.3: Compare the Estimated Degree of Change to That Projected by the Individual or Group That Originated the Project
    Task 6.4: Determine if the Improvement Justifies Continuing the Analysis
         Case Study Number Two

    Activity 7: Developing Proposed Project Recommendations, Estimates of Resources, and Return on Investment (ROI)
    Task 7.1: Develop an Estimate of Resources Required to Implement the Proposed Project
         Parametric Model Estimation
         Total Cost Estimation
         Simulation Model Estimation
         Reserve Analysis Estimation
         PERT or 3-Point Estimation
         Published Data Estimation
         Analogous Estimation
         Vendor Bid Analysis Estimation
         Expert Judgment Estimation
    Task 7.2: Perform a Sensitivity, Safety, and Risk Analysis and Develop Mitigation Plans
         Sensitivity Analysis
    Task 7.3: Calculate Value Added to the Organization
    Task 7.4: Develop Proposed Project/Initiative Recommendations

    Activity 8: Presenting the Business Case to the Executive Committee
    Task 8.1: Prepare the Business Case Final Report
         Business Case Final Report Outline Summary
         Executive Summary
    Task 8.2: Set Up a Meeting with the Executive Team
         Scheduling the Executive Team Meeting
              Meeting Agenda
         Preparation for Executive Team Meeting
    Task 8.3: Present Findings and Recommendations to the Executive Team
    Task 8.4: Project/Initiative Approval Decisions
    Task 8.5: The Project/Initiative Is Approved
    Task 8.6: Proposal Is Rejected
    Task 8.7: Prepare an Initial Project Mission Statement
    Task 8.8: Closure of the BCD Team
    Summary of the Business Case Development Process

    Appendix A

    Appendix B

    Appendix C

    Appendix D



    H. James Harrington, Christopher F. Voehl, Frank Voehl