The objective of the Course Project is to provide you with practice in creating, justifying, and explaining a decision-making proposal. All elements involved in the creation of this proposal, from problem definition through action plan, must be covered. Further, the proposal, as constructed, must meet the tests of any sound business plan, namely that it has specific and measurable goals and objectives, clearly defined activities, stipulated time frames during which those activities will take place, and clearly defined measurable outcomes.
The subject matter of your paper should be business-oriented in nature and should avoid decisions that depend largely on intuition to solve.
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Although the length of the paper is not predetermined, a 10–15 page analysis, including data and appendices, is probably correct. You will also share a summary PowerPoint presentation with fellow students during the Week 6 Discussion.
The Final Course Project Proposal with the PowerPoint presentation is due by the end of Week 7 (graded).
The following outline is required for your Course Project.
Executive Summary (less than one page)
This summary is a short, carefully worded description of the problem situation that identifies the recommended solution. A brief justification and explanation of the selection method is to be included, highlighting factors that contributed to selecting the recommended alternative.
Decision Problem Overview
Describe the nature and scope of the decision problem selected, its history together with causes, and the outcomes of any previous attempts to deal with it.
In order to define the problem correctly, the following questions should be addressed.
What is the general nature of the problem?
What event triggered the situation?
Are we imposing any constraints on the situation?
What are the underlying elements of the problem?
Are there dependencies on other decisions?
Briefly introduce the key decision elements—objectives, alternatives, consequences, and uncertainties; details are to be discussed in the following sections.
Explain each objective in detail. Separate objectives into fundamental and means objectives. A minimum of three objectives is required.
Describe each alternative, and explain how the alternatives differ from one another. A minimum of three alternatives is required.
Describe the alternative recommended and why. Explain the tradeoffs you utilized or present a weighted scoring model. Explain why you feel that this report contains sufficient information to make a decision on the problem. Describe any additional information that would be useful to have.
Explain how you determined the values for each alternative and their corresponding objectives. Show your consequence table, either in this section or as an appendix. Include the bases for forecasts and any techniques or tools used to estimate consequences. Discuss the reliability of your predictions. Indicate what events were considered to be uncertain, explain the probabilities of their occurrence, and what information you used to establish your confidence level in these probabilities. A minimum of two uncertainties is required for the paper.
Implementation, Monitoring, and Control
This section contains a detailed implementation plan. There will be an explanation of how the recommended alternative will be implemented, resources dedicated to accomplishing it, and key individuals who will be responsible for the plan’s success. Details should be included on how the plan will be monitored, subsequent evaluation criteria, and how the plan can be amended.
Works Cited (at least two external sources should be used)
Once you have outlined your paper, you should be ready to begin a PowerPoint presentation. As you develop the contents of the sections in your paper, you should extract bullet-point ideas that best express your intended message. If you prefer, use the slides to brainstorm and organize your thoughts before writing the paper. Then refer to your presentation to guide and remind you of the flow of your storyline.