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Template: Building a business case for a planning solution

Integrated business planning

Building momentum for business initiatives can often be a complex process. We’ve created a template for you to work from to help build a case.

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George Hood
March 8, 2024

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Template: Building a business case for a planning solution


Is your planning platform holding you back?

While technology has significantly improved in the enterprise planning market, many still struggle with their planning processes. Many organizations have implemented newer cloud technology but have botched their implementation by not effectively integrating it into their planning processes, limiting the value.

These overly complex and disconnected planning processes add unnecessary 'inertia' to business decisions.

Over time, these organizations are building up ‘technical debt’ - building on top of these botched implementations is only increasing the cost they’ll eventually have to pay to replace the solution in favor of a more effective one. They persevere with behemoth legacy planning processes supported by complex technology stacks that are difficult to navigate, and even more difficult to change.

To revamp your planning process, you must ensure that you have a good benchmark of where you are concerning your peer group concerning planning processes and technologies.  This will require an honest assessment of your current state and may benefit from a service provider assisting you with this planning health check.  You must understand the shortfalls of your current process, as well as its strong points. 

Building a business case

There are a number of steps you should take to build a business case:

  • Build a vision for planning
    Create illustrations of where you are today, what the problems/issues are, and what the vision should be.
  • Identify sponsors for the project
    Ensure that all represented disciplines are included and that there is agreement and support from business leaders.
  • Identify project owners and stakeholders
    For enterprise planning initiatives that require improvements in financial and operational planning, is this typically the CFO but this could vary by organization.
  • Build the business case, including a cost/benefit analysis
    Many of the improvements, other than cost reduction/improvement, may be difficult to quantify.  Here many organizations focus on retaining/attracting new customers, revenue protection, and revenue/margin improvement by more effectively responding to changes in the market.
  • Invest in people
    You need resource that can leverage the capabilities available in leading planning tools, including the ability to create planning models and reporting. Otherwise, you may initially experience a significant skills gap between solution capabilities and your ability to operate them.
  • Project planning
    Determine the project organization and project methodologies that will ensure participation and subject matter expertise from all affected planning disciplines. 

The template

If you'd like to start building a case of your own, we've got a template available that'll guide you through the beginning of the process. Obviously, you'll need to tweak it to suit your business specifically, but it should serve as a strong starting point in constructing your argument and hitting the points listed above.

Download the template here.

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