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Business Case

Why is it important?

It is a PRINCE2 principle that a project should have a continued business justification. In PRINCE2 this business justification is documented in a Business Case that describes the reasons for the project, based on the estimated costs, risks and expected benefits.

The ever-present decision concerning the Business Case is whether the project can (still) be justified. This decision is based on:
Desirability: the balance of costs, benefits and risks.
Viability: the project can deliver the products.
Achievability: the products can deliver the expected benefits.

Terms and definitions

The Business Case is the most important set of information for the project. It drives the decision-making processes and is used continually to align the project's progress to the business objectives and benefits that are defined within the Business Case.

Outputs, outcomes and benefits
Outputs are the specialist products delivered by the project. These can be used to improve the business.
Outcomes are the changes derived from the use of the specialist products of the project.
Benefits are the measurable improvements resulting from the outcomes that are perceived as advantages by one or more stakeholders.

The content of the Business Case
The PRINCE2 Business Case contains the information below. The content and depth will vary per organization and project.
Executive summary: highlights the key points from the Business Case for senior management.
Reasons: the description of why the project is necessary.
Business options: the alternatives considered to deliver the desired outcomes.
Expected benefits: the expected savings and/or advantages, in measurable terms.
Expected dis-benefits: the expected disadvantages, in measurable terms.
Timescale: the period in which the Business Case needs to be realized.
Costs: a summary of the project, operational and maintenance costs.
Investment appraisal: the balance between coss and benefits.
Major risks: the most important risks threatening the Business Case.

What is the PRINCE2 approach?


What are the responsibilities?

Corporate or programme management
Senior User
Senior Supplier
Project Manager
Team Manager
Project Assurance
Project Support

Used sources

Managing Successful Projects with PRINCE2, 2009 edition