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Project Management Templates Feasibility Study

March 3 2008

Undertake a Feasibility Study using Project Management Templates

During the creation of a Business Case for your project, you may decide that you need to undertake a Feasibility Study to determine the likelihood of the alternative solutions actually meeting the customer’s requirements. A Feasibility Study adds depth to a Business Case by researching the business problem in more detail, identifying the requirements for a solution, and determining whether the alternative solutions are likely to meet the requirements stated.

You should always start a Feasibility Study using¬†Project Management Templates by researching the business problem or opportunity that the project addresses. You should then document the customer’s requirements for a solution and complete a Feasibility Assessment to measure the likelihood of each alternative solution actually meeting those requirements. By ranking the results of the Feasibility Study, you can then recommend a preferred solution for implementation, based on the overall feasibility rating.

Although you may conduct a Feasibility Study Project Management Templates exercise before, during or after you complete the Business Case for your project, it is usual to complete it as part of the Business Case process to add rigor to the alternative solutions identified. Once the Feasibility Study is complete, it is presented to an identified Project Sponsor for approval.

Research the Problem

Add depth to the Business Case by researching the root cause of the problem which the project hopes to address by implementing a suitable solution. Complete a “Root Cause Analysis” exercise to identify the underlying cause of the problem by performing the following steps:

  • Data Collection. Gather all of the information required to gain a thorough understanding of the problem
  • Data Analysis. Analyze the information gathered and identify any gaps and deficiencies in knowledge
  • Identify Contributing Factors. Then identify the events which led to the problem, and identify the possible contributing factors for those events
  • Identify the Root Cause. After all of the contributing factors have been identified, describe the reasons for them occurring. These reasons form the “root cause” of the problem.

Research the Opportunity

Although projects are often initiated to solve a business problem, you may also initiate a project to “realize” (i.e. take up on) a business opportunity. Complete the following research to identify the underlying basis for the opportunity, by performing the following steps:

– Data Collection. Gather all of the information required to gain a thorough understanding of the opportunity

– Data Analysis. Analyze the information gathered and identify any gaps and deficiencies in knowledge

– Identify Contributing Factors. Then identify the events which led to the opportunity and identify the possible contributing factors for those events

– Identify the Underlying Reason. After all of the contributing factors have been identified, describe the reasons for them occurring. These reasons form the “underlying basis” for the opportunity

Identify the Requirements

Now that you have a detailed understanding of the root cause of the problem or the underlying basis of the opportunity, you should identify the business drivers and requirements for a solution to that problem or opportunity in your online project management templates. For example, it may be required that a project delivers:

– A new technology for the business with a central source of data

– A set of new processes and procedures for staff to implement

– A suite of new products and services to release to the market place

– A new business premise with greater staff capacity and improved facilities

– A physical asset for a customer, such as a construction, infrastructure or telecommunications asset

Assess the Feasibility

You have now completed all the background research required to gain a detailed understanding of the business problem, drivers and requirements. You are now ready to undertake a feasibility assessment, by identifying the alternative solutions available and rating the likelihood of each solution meeting the requirements of the customer. You will also list the risks, issues and assumptions associated with each alternative solution.

Then assess the likelihood (or feasibility) of each alternative solution meeting the requirements of the project. To determine the level of feasibility of each solution, you need to identify a range of appropriate assessment methods.

Once you have completed the feasibility assessment, you should document the results by specifying the level to which the solution addresses the requirements of the customer. If you don’t have the time, or it is not possible to complete a formal assessment of the feasibility of each solution, then a “best guess” based on the research of other similar projects undertaken may be the only method available to you.