Strong Business Cases Win Financial Approval, 'Hearts and Minds'

John Storts

If you want an IT project to be approved, you've got to plead a compelling case for it. To make the best case, you have to craft sensible, well-written arguments that

demonstrate the potential benefits of the project in terms of cost reduction, productivity and revenue increases.


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Cutter Consortium uploaded a benchmark report to the Knowledge Network that provides guidance on building winning cases from start to finish . The report, featuring articles by Cutter Benchmark Review editor Gabriele Piccoli, John Ward, Elizabeth Daniel and IT Business Edge contributor Mike Sisco, examines survey results about how respondents create and take business cases before executive decision-makers.


In "Increasing Your Odds: Creating Better Business Cases," Daniel and Ward classify respondents into four categories: under-appreciated IT function, low value-added IT function, high value-added IT function and the IT function with substandard performance. They draw conclusions from these categories about the value of different behaviors as they relate to the development of business cases, benefit identification, cost estimations and evaluation of the investments after they've been made.


Sisco takes a look at business cases from the point of view of the CEO in "Getting the Support You Need for Your Business Case." He describes how to structure the case to increase the chances for approval and provides recommendations that can be implemented immediately.


A properly constructed business case doesn't just provide credible evidence that a project is worth doing. As Cutter's David Higgins put it in "Developing Viable ROI Solutions to Justify New IT Infrastructure Projects," a solid business case that is expertly presented can win over "hearts and minds to evangelize the benefits of the project elsewhere in the organization."


More from the Knowledge Network

'Business Case Essentials' Excerpt

'The Business Case Checklist' Excerpt

New Hire Business Case Template

Add Comment      Leave a comment on this blog post
Nov 21, 2011 5:41 AM Josh Josh  says:

Being able to touch on many or all elements of your case can provide an argument in itself. However, this alone may not be the deciding factor when it comes to finances. Forecasting important areas within the business and industry can also make a strong case. Breaking down factors, positive and negative, that support your case will provide your side with the strength it needs to prevail.  


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