Tasks, to-do lists, meetings, and more. Amidst that rush, the idea of writing a good business plan—much less following a business plan template—often feels time-consuming and intimidating. After all, when done right, business plans have enormous payoffs. And yet, more than 1 in 10 prospective business owners said they do not intend to write a business plan. Bplans worked with the University of Oregon to compile and analyze research around the benefits of business planning.
In this edited excerpt, the authors discuss what type of information you should include in the operations section of your business plan. Operations is concerned with how you buy, build and prepare your product or service for sale. That covers a lot of ground, including sourcing raw materials, hiring labor, acquiring facilities and equipment, and shipping the finished goods. The basic rule for your operations section is to cover just the major areas—labor, materials, facilities, equipment and processes—and provide the major details—things that are critical to operations or that give you competitive advantage. The simplest way to treat operations is to think of it as a linear process that can be broken down into a sequence of tasks. Once the initial task listing is complete, turn your attention to who's needed to do which tasks.
If you want to gain the financial autonomy to run a business or become an entrepreneur, a financial advisor could help align your finances to meet your business needs. Check out our investment calculator. Your executive summary should appear first in your business plan.
Whatever your reason for writing a business plan, the task will probably still feel like a homework assignment. A business plan is a roadmap describing a business, its products or services, how it earns or will earn money, its leadership and staffing, its financing, its operations model, and many other details essential to its success. Investors rely on business plans to evaluate the feasibility of a business before funding it, which is why business plans are commonly associated with getting a loan. Business planning is often used to secure funding, but plenty of business owners find writing a plan valuable, even if they never work with an investor. We'll also send you updates on new educational guides and success stories from the Shopify newsletter.