Three Tips for Building a Business Case

a group of facilities managers meet around a large table, a bright lightbulb above them signifies an idea

When it comes to asking for additional resources from your organisation, it helps to be prepared.

Facilities managers are used to seeking budget approval for maintaining facilities and replacing assets, like upgrading a HVAC unit, or replacing frayed carpet. But when it comes to asking for resources to help their team, it's often a different conversation.

Facilities management (FM) software helps facilities teams to work more efficiently and allows them to redefine what is possible. Getting stakeholders to understand the possibilities and the potential cost savings is a pre-requisite to getting the approval to purchase the software. This usually means that a business case needs to be created.

What is a business case?

A business case is a document where you present the expected commercial benefit of a proposed project. It’s how you convince stakeholders your project is a worthy investment, sure to develop a solid return for them.

In the case of facilities management software, it’s about demonstrating the potential benefits to the business.

Tip #1: Clear cut costs

Cost savings are a compelling argument to lead with when creating your business case.  Make sure to set out the potential cost savings as well as the costs of the proposed solution as clearly as possible. Your stakeholders will want a crystal-clear picture of what this proposed project is going to cost them, so they can be confident in the return it will provide.

Cost Savings

Calculate potential cost savings by looking at the efficiencies you will gain from the project. Work out the actual number of hours you are likely to save from implementing the software and project the value of these hours. For an example on how to do this, download this resource.

With those extra hours back in your week from streamlined processes and automation, show the value-adding activities that can now be undertaken.

You might also consider the potential costs of risks posed by outdated processes. This might be in the form of compliance requirements, or data security.

Explicit Costs

When we think of explicit costings, the first thing that comes to mind is the cost of purchase. How much does the software cost, and how much will it continue to cost to access?

The other explicit costs needing to be laid out include incremental costs that may be involved. For example, what extra support or modules are likely to be required in the foreseeable future, and what is the cost associated with these?

Implicit Costs

As well as detailing out the actual outlay, consider the cost impact on existing resources. For example, think about how many hours you’ll need to set aside for implementation to ensure your project is a success.

Find out what support your supplier will provide as part of the implementation, as well as additional resources available to you, and what you need to budget for.

Tip #2: Align to business objectives

When putting together your business case, consider the benefits of FM software in the context of the broader strategic goals of your organisation. This requires thinking about the role your facilities team plays within the broader organisation.

The specific strategic goals of your organisation may vary, but you’ve likely had exposure to them in your role. Strategic goals for organisations are those financial and non-financial accomplishments the organisation wants to tick off in the next couple of years.

Publicly listed companies will outline their strategic goals in their annual reports to shareholders. However, if you are not a listed organisation, you’ll usually hear about these strategic goals from the leaders in the business.

Below, we’ve outlined some of the more common strategic goals our clients share, and how facilities management software supports them in achieving these.

Reducing environmental impact

With Australia’s commitment to net-zero by 2050, reducing carbon emissions has raced up the priority list for many organisations. Beyond the obvious reduction in paper waste, leveraging facilities management software can have broader reaching benefits to reducing your environmental footprint.

For example, FM software also assists in reporting. Obtaining an accurate picture of your assets and their impact is critical to achieving certification of carbon-neutral status.

Creating customer centric facilities

Whether employees, visitors, or customers, many organisations have a strategic goal to ensure their facilities offer the best for everyone. This helps to attract and retain quality talent, and grows the business by fostering positive relationships with customers.

Improving accessibility

As well as contributing to a reduction in your organisations environmental footprint, FM software supports CSR through facility accessibility. By enabling those living with disability to work in, visit and experience your facility, you will be positively contributing to accessibility.

Tip #3 Consider stakeholder perspectives

When putting your business case together, think about who you’re presenting to. Think about the roles those stakeholders have, and what goes into them, to hit on points they will find particularly engaging.

For example, a finance manager might be predominantly interested in the cost-benefit ratio, while the operations manager may have KPIs around service delivery.

Ensuring your business case clearly addresses the needs of your stakeholders increases your chance of success.


Like you, your stakeholders are busy people, so try to keep your writing as concise as possible. Make your points clear, don’t waffle on, and try to use quantitative data wherever possible.

Use succinct language, clear headings, and avoid using first person language (eg. “I think that”, “I would like”.)

Remember this is a professional document, so avoid adding in decorative images, coloured fonts or word art. If you have information that can be graphically represented, do so in the company’s brand colours (you can usually request these from marketing).

If writing isn’t your strong point, reach out to your marketing or HR team for assistance.