The fundamental issue is Return on Investment (ROI),
whether the staff is one writer or 100. Here are the
major cost factors that must be evaluated:

A Realizable positive values of a structured solution.

1. A breakdown of the identifiable costs of the
current unstructured methodology which can be reduced
or eliminated by a structured approach. Most of these
are reducible labor costs. 

2. What needed current and future improvements in
information management and productivity, not
realizable under the unstructured approach, could be
implemented under a structured approach. Consider not
only current needs, but also predictable future needs
which are only feasible under a structured approach.
Estimate the long-term positive value to the
enterprise of these improvements. 

B. Estimated negative costs of conversion to the
structured approach

1. Cost of new software.

2. Cost of development to initially implement a
structured approach.

3. The cost of training activities needed to implement
the structured approach.

C. Any additional positive and negative cost factors
associated with the transition to a strucured
approach. One probable positive value is that many
employees outside the writing group will discover that
they now have much more cost-effective ways to
precisely locate and retrieve technical document
information they need to perform their tasks.

If you can assign realistic positive and negative
numbers to the listed factors, and the positive values
substantially exceed the new negative costs, you may
be able to make the case for a structured approach.

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