How to write a business justification
A business justification is a written document whose intent is to describe a proposed or existing business or venture. This document is used for a variety of purposes. It can be included in a business plan to be presented to a financial institution as part of a loan application.
A business justification may also be used internally to gain approval for funds for a particular project. Whatever the need, most business justifications should contain the same basic elements.
Create a project team which includes a business analyst, an audience analyst, as well as publication, content and technology analysts. Choose existing employees who already have a thorough understanding of the organisation whenever possible. These employees must be on board with the changes or updates the business justification is attempting to portray.
Choose a project leader. This person will need to be a natural leader who is adept at uniting diverse perspectives and creating a clear course for the organisation to follow.
Analyse the organisation. The business analyst determines who should be involved in enacting the proposal, those needed to get permission from to go forward with the plans and who must buy-in to the plan in order for it to succeed. All of this information is compiled and documented into a word processing document for future reference.
Know the audience. Determine the appropriate audience for the business justification. For example, if the goal is to obtain financing to expand the business, the audience is the financial institution and loan officers who will be in charge of approving the loan. Research the audience in order to fully understand what it looks for, as well as the exact elements which must be included in the business justification in order to gain approval. Determine the exact format the business justification must be written in to meet the requirements of the intended audience.
Review related publications, including trade documents and other relevant brochures. The publication analyst will take charge of researching what other organisations are doing, as well as what types of publications the business organisation can utilise to improve communications regarding the changes planned for implementation.
Examine the technological infrastructure to determine which changes may need to be made to accommodate any desired upgrades or changes. The technology analyst studies current technology, as well as any desired technology and documents this information in a spreadsheet for further analysis by the project team.
Study and analyse the data the team has compiled to determine what to include in the business justification. The content analyst decides, with input from the rest of the project team, the content included in the final document. She also decides how best to serve the particular audience in order to achieve the desired outcomes.
Draft the business justification according to the specific standards of the audience. In most cases, the business justification must meet specific guidelines depending to whom it will be submitted.