Proportion is everything.
If you are considering investing hundreds of thousands of dollars or more in a technology investment, it makes sense to invest thousands of dollars to prove the benefit of the investment with a business case. But if your project budget is only a few thousand dollars, a thousand dollar business case will negate any benefits.
That doesn’t mean we need to proceed without a business case. Even the simplest analysis can justify and provide direction to a small project.
We recently undertook a project to address an aging website that was becoming unreliable. It has been scheduled for replacement, but needs interim attention. It was critical to keep the website online until it could be replaced with a comprehensive new solution. We were able to quickly assess that it would be more cost-effective to deliver an interim replacement than upgrade the platform, which gave us clarity on how to proceed.
From that simple assessment, we also derived the common sense success criterion of minimal cost replacement, which has effectively guided our planning process. It is not rocket science to create such a simple business case, success criterion and plan. However, it is all too easy to overlook the importance of planning in small projects.
A proportionate attention to best practices will yield significant benefits, regardless of the project scale.