Business Case / Alternatives Analysis


An Investment Business Case uses a standard format to describe the value, risk, and return on investments made in technology and other resources. The Business Case also contains an alternatives analysis, program performance tracking metrics, architecture information, and security status information. It should include:

  • New Requirement Description
  • Existing Solution Check
  • New Solution Business Case
  • New Solution Evaluation
  • New Solution Approval
  • New Solution Implementation -> Benefit Realization

1. New Requirement. A new requirement for resource(s) or support is identified in a line of business (LOB), which is brought to the EA and capital planning teams for evaluation.
2. Existing Solution Check. The EA and capital planning teams determine that an existing EA component cannot meet the requirement.
3. New Solution Business Case. The sponsoring LOB determines that the requirement is of sufficient importance to merit the cost of developing a business case:

  • Business Need. Describe the requirement in terms of the gap in operational or administrative performance it represents to the LOB and the enterprise.
  • Impact if Not Resolved. Describe the impact to the enterprise if the performance gap is not resolved, including strategic, business, and technology impact.
  • Alternatives Analysis. Identify 3 or more viable alternative solutions (if 3 exist).
  • Cost-Benefit Analysis. Quantify the direct and indirect costs and benefits for each alternative on a lifecycle basis, including qualitative items.
  • Return on Investment. Do a ROI calculation for each alternative.
  • Net Present Value Adjustment. Do a NPV adjustment for each ROI calculation to account for anticipated cost increases over the investment’s lifecycle.

4. Business Case Evaluation. The business case’s alternatives are evaluated by the Architecture Working Group (AWG) for the correctness of the analysis, and alignment with the EA at each level of the framework. The Capital Planning Working Group (CPWG) then reviews the business case for the correctness of the financial analysis. A coordinated recommendation is made to the executive-level Capital Planning Board (CPB) as to whether the business case should be approved or disapproved.
5. Business Case Approval. The CPB reviews and approves/disapproves the business case in the context of the enterprise’s overall investment portfolio using criteria that identify value from a strategic, business, and technology perspective:
6. Implementation. If the business case is “selected” (approved) for funding by the CPB, the proposed solution becomes an implementation project that is managed by the sponsoring LOB. The project is reviewed by the CPB at key milestones and/or periodically as part of the capital planning process’ oversight of all projects.

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