What Is A Problem Statement?

A problem statement defines the problem being faced by a business and also identifies what the solution would look like.

It can be seen as the starting point for coming up with a product vision. In defining the problem statement, be sure to include these elements:

1. The problem: What is the problem plaguing the organization?
2. What it affects: Indicate here the entities affected by the problem. This can be a group or stakeholders or an organization
3. Impact: What is the impact or consequence of the problem?
4. Solution: Include your recommendation for solving the problem.

An example of a problem statement is as follows:

The problem of manually searching through piles of physical financial documents affects auditors and the finance personnel within the organization. The impact of this is a lengthy auditing process, missing documents, unverifiable transactions and high storage costs. A successful solution would provide an online database with search filters that make it easy to retrieve scanned documents; provide an audit trail of changes made to existing documents and reduce storage costs.

A problem statement can help in presenting a quick snapshot of the problems facing a business and the possible solutions. It can also form the basis of building effective business cases and justifying the need for specific projects.

How do you use problem statements? Don't forget to leave a comment below.