Who is going to be affected?
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- Who is writing the business case?
- Are you the right person?
The person writing the business case needs to have an understanding of: the digital content to be preserved, the challenges associated with it that need to be solved, the basics of digital preservation and the broader context
- Who are you writing the business case for?
- What sort of language is needed?
A critical part of writing the business is understanding the intended audience and this is likely to vary from case to case. You will need to understand the structure of your organisation and the decision making bodies and/or senior managers who will consider your case. You will also need to understand what they are expecting i.e. the format and structure of the business case, and the detail required.
- What is a stakeholder?
A stakeholder is a person who has an interest or may be affected by your business case or the resulting implementation
- Who is affected within and outside the organisation
- Who else in the organisation needs to be involved?
- Who is supplying the assets / providing DP service?
- Who is demanding value from the assets?
- Who will do the DP work? Roles and responsibilities
- Who decides how it is catalogued, stored, etc.?
- Who has responsibility for curation?
- Who is the collection owner?
- Who is supporting the case externally?
A stakeholder analysis will help you to understand who else in the organisation needs to be involved. You should have an answer to each of these questions and understand the impact on each group. Different people will have different expectations of the activities involved and the outcomes, you need to understand how these relate to each other and how what you are asking of people fits into their priorities.
- Who are the designated user community?
You must understand their requirements and capabilities. Different requirements will determine different approaches to preservation - do they expect to see the originals? Do they want copies in modern formats? Do they plan to use certain research methodologies? Do they understand licensing conditions? Do they have the technical awareness to use the content as it is provided?
- Who are your supporters and who are your detractors?
Some people will see benefits in what you are trying to achieve. Others will see problems and conflicts with other objectives. For example they may have to give up resource from other areas to fund digital preservation and may not be willing. Anticipate their objections and prepare responses.
- Who is providing the infrastructure?
Supporting infrastructure could be provided by many parts of the organisation, for example technology:IT services, staffing or recruitment:Human Resources.
- Who is the owner of other relevant documentation?
Relevant documentation to your business case could be located in many different parts of your organisation, for example: institutional archive, departmental policy documents. Be careful not miss important sources of information by working in a vacuum.
- Who will determine the value of the assets?
Why are the assets important and to whom? This will help you determine which are important and prioritise what you need to do. It will also help you identify support for your business case. Consideration of who is responsible for longevity of the asset.
- Who will monitor implementation of DP?
- Who will measure whether DP is a success on an ongoing basis?
These roles needs to be identified at the outset of preparing the business case.
- What are the metrics of success? KPIs?
These need to be identified from the outset and linked to the stakeholders and the organisational strategy priorities.