Executive summary

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Analysing a disk

The executive summary should provide a snapshop of the key features of the business case, but most importantly it should present a short and compelling argument for the business case, addressing briefly the What?, Why?, and How? of the business case.

SCAPE Project business case examples

Use this to see how the key aspects of a business case can be articulated within a particular organisational context.

This section provides example text from SCAPE Project business case templates along with explanatory discussion notes.

Jpylyzer executive summary

An example executive summary.

Mass digitisation projects generate millions of master images that must be stored in multiple locations to ensure their longevity. At this scale, storage costs (even in the short term) are considerable. JPEG2000 technology offers the potential to significantly reduce the size of digitised masters for a negligible loss of quality. Using the JP2 file format to store digitised masters therefore provides an attractive alternative to the conventional choice of TIFF. There are however considerable digital preservation concerns about JP2, which could put the longevity of digitised collections at risk. This business activity will put in place a quality assurance process that will validate JP2 masters, mitigate preservation risks associated with their usage, and as a result enable considerable storage cost savings. By reducing initial storage costs by around 60%, resources will be freed up for the digitisation of one million additional pages.


Discussion notes explaining the approach in developing the Executive Summary example, above.

The summary above explains the context and current situation before describing the change to business processes that will be implemented. It focuses on the key elements for a business case of this kind: benefits, costs and risks. The text uses some technical language (mention of JP2 and TIFF) and this may be deemed too technical for the audience, in which case it may be better to refer to the technologies in general terms without specifically naming them.

See the full business case example for more information: Jpylyzer business case template

SCAPE Platform executive summary

An example Executive Summary.

Digital collections at this organisation have grown at such a rapid pace that our existing infrastructure is struggling to cope. Long term digital preservation of our collections and ensuring access for our users remain key strategic priorities. But as the capacity of our repository goes beyond 50TB we are unable to maintain the standards of digital preservation assessment defined in our organisational policy. This business activity will leverage and expand existing infrastructure in order to provide an efficient and cutting edge digital preservation capability.


Discussion notes explaining the approach in developing the Executive Summary example, above.

This summary focusses on the changing circumstances that leave the organisation unable to meet it's policy requirements and at risk of not living up to key strategic priorities. The efficiency of utilising an existing Hadoop cluster (rather than building something completely new) is hinted at. The detail of the solution, including any mention of the complex technologies of which it is composed, is not mentioned here.

See the full business case example for more information: SCAPE Platform business case template

Planning and Watch executive summary

An example Executive Summary.

Ensuring the longevity and accessibility of this institution's digital collections remains a top priority. However, for a small organisation with limited resources for digital preservation, knowing exactly when and where action is required is a critical issue. Unnecessary preservation action will deplete limited resources. Insufficient action where it is needed, and our digital legacy is placed at risk.

This business case requests a small capital investment to establish a cutting edge Preservation Planning and Watch function. It will target our resources in the most essential areas, ensuring the survival of our digital collections whilst keeping preservation activity efficient. The Watch mechanism operates using a community model. This will allow us both to share and showcase our unique video preservation expertise and take advantage of skills from elsewhere in areas where we have less experience.


Discussion notes explaining the approach in developing the Executive Summary example, above.

This summary assumes that the target audience of this case is well aware of digital preservation issues, and furthermore that those issues are of keen significance to organisational priorities. This might well not be the case in many organisations. In these cases, it may be more effective to pitch preservation benefits in the context and language of more indirect benefits such as future access (enabled by preservation).

See the full business case example for more information: Preservation and Watch business case template