Why are we writing a business case?

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The why is parts of strategic vision, and most significant or top-line benefits.

Why is digital preservation important to you organization, department, and collection? Why should I make digital preservation a priority?

Take a look at how digital preservation supports your organiation's mission and how it aligns with your strategy.
What value can be dervied for the community that is served by the organisation. Some of this will be immediate (e.g. a particular user or project), some of this is opportunity for the long-term (e.g. building research collections for the future).

There will be different whys. Benefits for different stakeholders.

Individual user - for their reuse now and in the future, to support their research/educational/commercial objectives Community - to support new areas of activity, eg research programmes or policy development Organisation - to fulfil mission, serve the commnunity, become more efficient

Will digital preservation fulfill the organisation's mission and business objectives?

Will digital preservation further the reputation and provide the ability for collaboration, investment and further funding?
Will digital preservation enable more effective exploitation of assets and maximisation of their use and re-use?

Will digital preservation make the collections deliver value to your designated community?

Will digital preservation make the collections easier to access and re-use?

 Properly executed, digital preservation should make it easier to give 
 the right information to the right people quickly and in a format they can use. In practice, the work you might need 
 to do to make a collection re-usable and accessible is very close to the work that you would need to do to preserve a 
 digital collection too.  Moreover having a thoughtful preservation plan means you can confidently begin to delete 
 content that is needlessly instead of duplicated.  

What are the expectations of your organisation and your users in relation to your management of the collections?

Part of your business case may be that investment in digital preservation may be essential to maintaining your standard of
service to end users. It may also be a part of changing user expectation e.g. the ability to find a reuse research data. 
Are there new policies e.g. in relation to open data being developed and adopted in your orgainsation?

do you need to plan for, invest in, grow, or develop areas in your organization to mitigate risks in relation to:

*Collections? (information loss, obsolescence, ...)
*Department? (inability to fulfil strategic objectives. IT)
*Organisation? (reputational damage, loss of income generating capacity with lack of access to assets)
*Users? (loss of access to collections)
*Depositors? (lack of confidence in repository)

Further information:

  • Strategy documents (collections development policies, organisational/departmental strategies, mission statements)
  • Risk assessment methodologies
  • Sample business cases
  • Preservation case studies - horror stories and success stories