Business Needs Analysis
Business owners often have numerous planning needs – some known and others unknown. So, how do you determine which solutions they need and are most important to them? Using a couple basic needs analysis tools, you can walk them through it.
Use a short priorities checklist (PDF) (BB9557C) to ask some basic questions that will help your clients prioritize their top planning needs. If you prefer something more in-depth, a comprehensive fact finder (PDF) (BB8718C) can also be used to identify areas of need.
These and other tools will help you identify solutions to address the financial needs of:
- The business
- Its employees
- The personal lifestyle of the owner(s)
And, it doesn’t matter whether it’s a nonprofit organization, a sole proprietorship or a farm. These tools can be used with any business.
The Process section below provides step-by-step guidance on how our tools can help you gather pertinent information and recommend solutions.
These approach tools can be used with owners of any business entity type. They're also an alternative when a business falls into an industry where our Informal Business Valuation/Buy-sell Review approach is not a good fit, such as:
- Nonprofit organizations
- Publicly traded companies
- Real estate holding companies
- Financial services firms
- Sole proprietorships
- Non-profitable businesses
- New companies
This approach is simple to use and gives you the basic tools you need to uncover sales opportunities.
Step 1: Setting the appointment
- Send the Approach Letter (PDF) (BB10882) or Approach Email (OFT) (LF519) to business owners that you’d like to meet with to get them thinking about financial planning needs they may have.
Step 2: Initial consultation
- Sit down with owners and use the Needs and Priorities Checklist (PDF) (BB9557C) to start conversations by exploring their financial priorities with thought-provoking questions. If you want to gather additional information, use the more comprehensive Needs Analysis Fact Finder (PDF) (BB8718C).
- The Business Life Cycle & Planning Brochure (PDF) (BB11226C) can be used in tandem with the checklist and fact finder to point out planning considerations based on where the business is in its life cycle.
Step 3: Offering solutions
- Show business owners we have a broad breadth of solutions to fit their needs using the Business Solutions Chart (PDF) (BB10565C).
Not sure which solutions best fit the situation? These tools can help determine possible solutions:
- For the business
- For the employees
- For the business owner's lifestyle
Step 4: Requesting proposals
- After narrowing down the options, request a proposal for the specific solution that meets the needs of your client.
Key materials listed below.
Business Needs and Priorities Checklist (BB9557C)
Start conversations with owners of closely held businesses by exploring their financial priorities with thought-provoking questions.
Business Needs Analysis Approach Letter (BB10882)
Contact business owners that you’d like to meet with to get them thinking about financial planning needs they may have. An email template is available for use. Search for LF519.
Business Needs Analysis Fact Finder (BB8718C)
Gather details from any business about its needs and priorities. Then use that info to begin offering solutions.
Business Life Cycle & Planning Brochure (BB11226C)
Use this in tandem with either the checklist or fact finder to point out planning considerations based on where the business is in its life cycle.