Develop the Business Case



Develop the Business Case
Develop the Business Case
In order to convince decision makers, fund holders or PCT/clinical
commissioning groups of the impact of priorities within the Vision Plan
(or even to support undertaking a vision plan) planning groups may need
to develop a business case. The business case provides the evidence
as to why an action or project is necessary and is used to gain senior
level commitment. It is also used to assess the ongoing viability of a
Before beginning
It is important that planning groups check with the organisation(s) that
you will submit the business case to, so that it fits their aims, objectives
and priorities. It is likely that planners will have already undertaken some
of the evidence gathering to inform the Vision Plan priorities, and may
also have engaged in informing the local Joint Strategic Needs
Assessment (JSNA), both of which will be useful for informing the
business case.
To prepare the business case, planners should consider:
 Is the business need clearly stated?
 Have the benefits been clearly identified?
 Are the reasons for and benefits of the project consistent with the
organisation’s strategy?
 Is it clear what will define a successful outcome?
 Is it clear what the preferred option is and why?
 Where there is external procurement, is it clear what the options are
for sourcing services or approaches?
 Are the cost implications clearly outlined?
 Are any risks and plans to address those risks clearly stated?
Who might the audience be?
The audience is likely to be local authority, PCT/Clinical Commissioning
Group and Departmental Heads within the local council. Planning
Groups may also present a business case to local decision making
structures like the Health and Well Being Boards or other commissioning
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decision makers (e.g. fire brigade, police, housing, commercial sector,
funding bodies or voluntary sector boards).
Whoever the audience is, planning groups will need to ensure that they
are using the right language and measurements in order to sell their
business case.
Eye health and sight loss support considerations
In developing the business case for eye health and sight loss support,
planning groups may wish to make links between sight loss and the other
health and lifestyle considerations. Health and lifestyle considerations
may include things like:
Blood Pressure
Learning Disabilities
Ageing population
BME communities
What might the business case look like?
The business case is likely to contain some of the following headings:
 Executive Summary: highlighting the key
 Introduction: information about the vision planning group, its aims
and objectives, links to other sectors and decision making groups
 Local and National Drivers: links to the UK Vision Strategy, local or
national vision documents, links to local or national policy, strategy or
performance indicators. Planners should also make links to local
commissioning priorities.
 The business need: Why is the vision plan or project needed? What
benefits will there be as a result of the plan or activity? What (if
anything) is currently being delivered and why does this need to
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change? What will happen if action is not taken? What other
alternatives have been considered, and why have you decided they
are not the best options? What statistical information is there to
support your business case?
Scope: minimum, desirable and optional scope of the project - this is
where you set out the best case, middle ground and minimum
requirements to deliver your project
Cost Analysis: how much will your proposed project or activity cost?
Remember to provide costs to support each of the options within the
scope section
Stakeholders: which sectors, individuals or organisations have a
stake in the proposed activity? How will they contribute or benefit
from the activity? Are there any potential conflicts of interest that
need to be noted?
Strategic Benefits and Risks: Is there any business, service or
environmental benefits or risks that you need to consider? If so, how
will benefits be optimised and risks managed?
Service Delivery Options: who might deliver service or implement
activity, how and proposed timescales
Implementation and Evaluation Arrangements: how will you
implement and evaluate the impact of the project or activity?
Case Study: An example of how it may work or has worked
elsewhere will support your business case
Planners may consider adding or amending these headings according to
organisational house style.
Can I get help to do this?
It is likely that planning group will have partners with experience in the
development of a business case. Otherwise, you may need to ask for
help from experts outside the group, or find examples or assistance by
recommendation or online. Both of these options may have financial
We have developed our business case - what now?
The business case should be used to present clear and evidenced
information to convince departments or strategic planning boards how its
proposals can support their priorities, policies or delivery plans.
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