A standard business plan usually consists of only a single document which is segregated into many different sections such as a brief description of the company, the individual business activities, a competitive analysis, forecasts of sales, cash flow, and other financial data. But business plans can be extremely complex due to the fact that there are a variety of important factors that should be considered while writing it. Most business owners find it difficult to prepare a credible plan because of the various detailed aspects involved. In order to help ease the burden, there are several software applications available today which can aid business owners in creating effective and accurate business plans. These software programs are easy to use because of their highly interactive user interface.
If you are planning to hire an outside consultant to help you create your business plans and other documents, you can ask him to use a business plan template as a guide. There are many templates online that can assist you in getting started. The following are some advantages of using a template to get started with your plan:
A business plan template can save you a lot of time and effort if you already know the information required by the task. Using a template allows you to get started on the task without having to do a lot of research. Moreover, it allows you to just highlight and modify the key points that you need to focus on. This is much easier than doing the research by yourself, thus saving you both time and money.
A template is a great alternative if you do not have a clear concept about how to go about the task. It is much simpler to use than a typical executive summary or marketing plan. You do not have to take hours to write a brief executive summary or marketing plan. Using a template will make it easier for you because the template already outlines the tasks that you should do. The financial plan can also be done within a few hours provided that you have the data at hand. If not, you can always study it from scratch and complete the task in a couple of days.
A template is also a cheaper option than hiring an attorney to write up a business plan for you. Many attorneys charge quite a lot of fees just to write up such documents. Even if you hire one to prepare the documents, you still end up paying for him or her to travel around the country for weeks on end. It is also not guaranteed that the attorney will provide quality work. What if your potential investors are all from another state? Is there a chance that the attorney may not be aware of certain laws that only you are aware of?
Using a business plan template eliminates this risk. The cost of these templates is much less than what it would cost your potential investors to hire an attorney. You can use the same template over again without expending any money. All you need to do is print out the template, give it to your team members to work on, and then send it over to your executive summary so that your clients can view it.