Every good plan starts with a clearly defined vision of the business in 3 - 5 years' time.
It should take into consideration each of the elements
A good plan also follows the SMART Rule.
Each of the elements must be:
This section could better be described as Market Intelligence, or knowledge, of which there are 4 key elements: The market - consisting of customers (existing and potential), their wants, needs and desires, along with existing buying trends of products and services. The marketplace - The landscape in which you will operate.
Geographically, is it local, national, or global. Is it mature or emerging. Is it controlled by a few, or open to many. The competition - Who are your competitors? What are their
strengths or weaknesses. Your business - What are your strengths or weaknesses.
(ie. capability, culture, public perception, reputation).
Your operations relates to everything you do. Such as:
Processes - How the job gets done. The sequences, tasks and timelines. It involves the skills and experience of your workforce, along with their willingness to carry out their allotted tasks individually, or in a team.
Products - These are the output from the processes; the items produced to meet the customer's requirements. The quality of the finished product is a significant element in maintaining customer satisfaction.
Services - Similar to 'products', services relate very much to how customers' needs have been met. Were they completed on time, of a quality and an acceptable price?
However, highly successful businesses aim not simply to meet
customers' expectations, but to exceed them, and as a result establish
a 'creative edge' against their competitors.
Facilities/Equipment: Facilities - In order to promote optimal production of products or services it is important that the facilities are appropriate to the nature of the business (ie. shop, office, warehouse, or factory).
They need to be clean, well lit, appropriately ventilated, with easily defined workstations and unobstructed thoroughfares.
Equipment - It is also important that equipment is appropriate to
the nature of the business (ie. computers, racks and stands, or machinery). They should be of sufficient number, capable of meeting production standards and well maintained.