Business Case Analysis: Structure, Format, & Examples

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Overview

When you master management processes, it’s vital to apply your knowledge to real issues. Business case analysis lets you navigate business theory in real life.

Business case analysis is a common assignment in business education. It is a study of some business aspect with the further suggestion of solutions. Read this page to find all the information you need. Our experts will teach you how to conduct a case analysis on each level. You will also find various case study examples for students and much more.

  1. 💼 Case Study Analysis Explained
  2. ️ How to Write a Case Analysis
  3. 🧠 Analyzing a Case Study
  4. 📝 Business Case Analysis Format
  5. 📈 Helpful Tips for Students
  6. 🤓 Case Analysis Samples

💼 Case Study Analysis Definition

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Let’s start with a clear explanation of a business case analysis.

What Is a Case Analysis?

A case analysis is a decision-making tool for achieving a higher efficiency level. This instrument helps estimate all the costs, risks, and benefits. A case analysis in business investigates a business problem providing possible solutions and recommendations. A business case analysis should include statistics, literature support, and other data.

For example, you consider whether to open a company’s new office. You need to assess costs, benefits, and other factors connected to opening a new department. After evaluating these indicators, it is possible to make a rational decision.

Here are the main functions of case analysis:

Giving multiple approaches to a problem.One solution can be insufficient or not enough. Several options allow us to find the best one for business.
Assessing the expenses.The CEO and team should see that spending money from a company budget is justified. If they invest the resources properly, they will profit. It is the whole point.
Giving a perspective for growth.Of course, you cannot predict the success of an enterprise for sure. But you can map out the right strategy.

️ Business Case Analysis Writing Guide – 3 Steps

Companies use case analysis to evaluate various factors, strategies, and indexes.

We are going to discuss this process to define each step. Case analysis consists of three stages: preparation, case outline, and completion of the investigation.

Stay with us if you want to study the most exciting cases, such as Starbucks or Netflix.

The picture depicts 3 steps of a business case analysis.
  1. Conduct Preparatory Work
    We will divide each stage into basic steps to make things go smoother.
    Preparatory work for a case analysis should include:
    • Introduction. You should provide a brief description of the case. Your audience wants to know the subject’s background and essential details.
    • Problem definition. To tackle a problem, one should see it inside out. That’s why you should thoroughly define and describe the issue.
    • Predictions. Finally, it’s vital to introduce possible solutions, methods, and outcomes in this part.
  1. Outline the Case
    The case analysis format includes outlining. At this point, you need to outline the core parts of case analysis:
    • Choose the range of problems. Dive deeper into its essence. Provide a detailed description.
    • Show the relation of a problem to the business situation in question. It’s vital to evaluate the issue and mark its origins.
    • Brainstorm realistic decisions. What can improve the situation in general? You should also answer the question, “What changes will it bring to the case?”
  1. Complete the Analysis
    A case study analysis should have a consistent conclusion like any other writing assignment.
    • Summarize the points you revealed in your study.
    • Draw the most significant implications out of the conducted work.
    • Finally, highlight the importance of the analysis and solutions for the business.

🧠 Business Case Analysis: How to Analyze

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Observing the case study analysis structure is a great way to learn how to write a case analysis. Let’s look at the Netflix case analysis outline example.

  • Step #1. At first, we define the essence of a problem:
    • The usual work format of Netflix gets outdated and doesn’t bring enough success.
    • So we need to look for breakthrough decisions that would become a game-changer.
  • Step #2. Explore the under-surface causes for this problem:
    • Why did the old Netflix model become outdated?
    • What were the market changes that demanded the company changes?
  • Step #3. Analyze and set up the connections between different factors:
    • Development of online media.
    • Urge to adjust to modern realities.
    • The company’s purpose is to provide quality content.
  • Step #4. Brainstorm the best solutions:
    • Transformation of Netflix into a streaming service.
    • Meeting the demands of various groups.
    • Advertising campaigns.

📝 Business Case Analysis Format & Structure

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In this part, we will discuss the format of a case analysis. Like any writing task, there are several vital parts that you need to include. Below is a general structure applicable to any case analysis.

Executive Summary

  • The executive summary should describe the issues of a business or a project and the current situation. At this point, you can include only essential details.
  • The executive summary includes introductory, body, and concluding parts.
  • Be brief but mention the goals and field of the research.
  • Define the sources of information you will use in a study.
  • A precious tip. While creating your executive summary, mind the question: “How much does my audience already know, and how much do I need to explain?”

Introduction

  • Unlike the summary, the introduction is not an overview. It is the part where you start getting into the details of the study. Here, you provide the context and objectives for the research.
  • You should put up a hypothesis about the origin and background of the problem.
  • A precious tip. While making a hypothesis about the problem, answer the question: “Why did it appear?” and suggest your most brilliant solution to it.

Methods

  • The section where you describe methodology is optional.
  • If you choose a solution to multiple problems in your study, you should mention the methods. Tell about the approaches you used to analyze the possible results of the decision.
  • A precious tip. It can happen that you weren’t thinking about any methodology while making a study. In that case, search for different case analysis methods after you finish your work. Look through those and check out whether you used any of them.

Solutions & Assumptions

  • Probably, the most practical part of your case study. The core of analysis begins here.
  • Provide various solutions to the analyzed issues to apply the most realistic ones. Placing them in order of significance will make this section easier to perceive.
  • A precious tip. Try to think out of the box and brainstorm viable findings. Your professor will appreciate your approach, and you will train the skill of creative thinking.

Recommendations

  • Since you’ve already made several good decisions, you probably marked the most notable one.
  • It’s high time to propose a strategy to improve business.
  • Justify your choice of solutions and describe the steps of using it
  • A precious tip. Share other solutions to less significant business problems. That will enrich your analysis making it more complete.

Conclusion

  • The goal of a conclusion is not just to sum up your research ideas. It’s meant to show the perspectives for further research and development.
  • In most cases, one or two concluding paragraphs will be sufficient for a case study. Sometimes it may require more.
  • A conclusion is your chance to make the last impression. You can show that your research is valuable for the field. Use it wisely.

References & Appendices

  • If you used external sources of information in your study, make sure you provide references to them. You can use such citation styles as MLA, APA, or Harvard.
  • If you have any other data to share, frame it up in the “Appendices” section. This is the place for vital information that may interrupt the body of a paper. That is why you place it in a special section.

📈 Case Study Tips & Tricks for Students

1. Conduct pre-research. Read the information about the case and make notes while reading.
2. Focus on the search for business problems and mark as many as you can spot. It will create the whole picture of the case in your mind.
3. Brainstorm possible solutions to each problem in the question. You will choose the best ones.
4. Give a brief description of the company in the executive summary.
5. Enumerate the issues that you have chosen for further discussion. You should also mention the reasons. Why did these problems appear?
6. Choose the theoretical base that you will rely upon in your study.
7. Read some examples of case study analyses. For instance, go through our Netflix case study.
8. When you suggest solutions, provide solid proof that they are realistic and possible.
9. Don’t forget to describe the possible results of the changes that your solutions will bring.
10. Revise your paper carefully and get rid of logical errors. Look at your study with a critical eye.

🤓 Examples of Case Analysis for Students

Now, to make you fully equipped and ready, we have a unique tool for you. In the section below, you’ll find plenty of case analysis examples. Here are businesses and companies to any taste. We have got Starbucks, Netflix, Tesla case study analyses, and many others.

Let’s get it!

Starbucks Case Study

Who doesn’t know Starbucks? This company, though, has examples of falls and raises:

Netflix Case Study

Another colossal company on our list is Netflix, with its incredible story of success:

Tesla Case Study

Tesla is something new, but its development process is rapid. It’s worth analyzing:

Amazon Case Study

Here’s a great temple of Amazon case study analyses to get acquainted with its story:

Airbnb Case Study

Learn about the business decisions that the Airbnb team has been making throughout the company’s history:

Southwest Airlines Case Study

Speaking of Southwest Airlines, we won’t mention falls and rises; it is worth attention anyway:

Google Case Study

If not the definition, Google is a synonym to great success. Check it out yourself:

Walmart Case Study

Walmart marketing strategies deserve attention, that is for sure:

Uber Case Study

Read about Uber’s becoming in different countries:

Trader Joe’s Case Study

Here you’ll learn about how Trader Joe influenced the organic foods market:

Nike Case Study

We find the Nike case study extremely interesting for business management students. See yourself:

McDonald’s Case Study

McDonald’s business model is also too interesting not to pay attention to it:

Zara Case Study

Zara’s CEO has a unique approach to business that led him to that immense success:

Costco Case Study

Learn about one of the largest wholesale companies in these case study examples:

Disney Case Study

Disney is the example of how one man’s project became a huge and popular company:

Coca-Cola Case Study

Coca-cola proves that with the proper knowledge of consumers’ psychology, it’s easier to make a profit:

Chipotle Case Analysis

We want to present you the analyses of Chipotle – the US casual-fast food chain from the early 90-s:

Concluding words

As you can see, case analysis is a complex but doable task. You just need to know the right tools.

We hope to provide you with all the necessary knowledge about business analysis. We are sure that you will use them and get an excellent mark. What’s more important is that you’ll master the skill of conducting a case analysis.

Use consistent approaches and formal language, add statistical data, and everything will be fine.

🔗 References

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