Whether you are a budding entrepreneur or a seasoned one, you need to have insights into what a problem statement for a business is, its examples, how to write it, and any other information about it.
When workplace staff members and departmental teams express initiative in solving problems, they demonstrate competence in handling complex and unanticipated challenges at work. Businesses rely on individuals and teams that can effectively analyze challenges and propose working solutions.
In this article, we offer tips on how to generate problem statements, with 50 comprehensive business examples you can use for reference.
What’s The Meaning Of A Problem Statement?
A problem statement summarizes a challenge that needs timely intervention to help improve a situation. It summarizes the problem in business, why it is a problem and how to address it. Businesses thrive when they can solve potential and existing customers’ issues.
Pointers On How To Write A Problem Statement
A problem statement must be accurate and precise. There are vital components to consider when crafting a problem statement that can positively impact a project’s outcome. These include:
1. A Description Of How Things Should Work
First, provide some context that will make it easier to understand the problem by explaining how this process is supposed to function and work. Mention the problem while keeping the end-user in mind.
2. An Overview Of What The Problem Is And Explaining Its Impact
A practical problem statement should address a problem stating what it is, why it is a problem, and the benefits of solving it. It reveals who the problem affects and why it needs fixing. You could indicate any attempts you have undertaken to fix the problem and why those attempts did not work. Explain in detail your understanding of the problem at hand. Usually, fixing a problem in a business setup will help improve efficiency in the workflow processes, save time, minimize the wastage of resources, and impact the cost.
3. An Explanation Of The Cost Implications
When you explain the problem to critical stakeholders, mention the cost implications of not addressing the issue. Entrepreneurs understand the money language better, so framing the problem and projected solution regarding financial consequences is easier. Try to be specific by pinpointing exact figures of how much the business will lose if the issue remains unresolved and how much the business will save by implementing a workable solution. The problem of wasting resources or preventing the company from maximizing profits should reflect in the problem statement.
4. Evidence To Support Your Theory
After stating the financial implications, you need to support your claims with evidence if the stakeholders are to take you seriously. You must conduct comprehensive research, cite your sources, and give practical examples. You must have relevant data to present if the need arises.
5. Suggestions For The Solutions
A problem statement should propose a detailed solution to the problem. At this juncture, you need to have a firm grasp of where the challenges are arising from and offer practical approaches to mitigate them. You must outline your objectives by suggesting an ingenious strategy for addressing challenges.
6. Benefits Of Your Suggested Solutions
After pinpointing the problem:
- Explain the ramifications of not fixing these setbacks and propose appropriate solutions.
- Demonstrate this by focusing on efficiency and the financial impact the solution will have helps convince stakeholders of the viability of the problem statement.
- Comprehensively outline how the solution will impact finances by increasing revenue streams, reducing expenses, improving productivity, saving time, and increasing profit margins.
7. A Summary Of The Problem And The Expected Solution
In conclusion, you must summarize the problem, explain why it needs fixing, and provide an overview of why your solution is the best.
50 Business Problem Statement Examples
1. Social Media Channel
While Mark Zuckerberg was studying, Harvard had its version of Facebook. Though it was possible to search other students’ profiles on the university wall, it was not possible to interact and perform any social interaction by liking, commenting, or networking.
Problem: The logistics of trying to connect, network, and interact with like-minded friends without physically having to travel.
“Human beings are social beings. They would love to interact and network with people in faraway places without physically traveling. People love to socialize but hate having to spend to do it.”
Solution: Facebook allows its audience to search and network with like-minded individuals.
Problem: An inefficient manual assembly process that consumes plenty of time affects productivity as employees have to spend hours manually installing machine parts. The long delays negatively impact production goals as you could spend that time developing products is spent fixing faulty machines.
Solution: Automating assembly processes and installing conveyor belts to optimize manufacturing workflows.
Problem Statement: Rigorous labor-intensive processing due to manual paperwork management.
3. Streaming Entertainment Service Company
Netflix, Hulu, and other streaming services came to solve the problem of people having to go to video stores to rent movies. They did this by trying to eliminate video stores and delivering movies to customers allowing them to keep those movies for as long as they needed. For this, their problem statement would be similar to this one:
“Clients detest going to a video store. They don’t like traveling back and forth and they hate paying late fees even more.” An interpretation of the problem statement is:
Problem: Going to the store entails fighting through traffic and waiting in queues for your turn to get the movies you want.
Solution: The streaming service allows customers to enjoy numerous movies streamed directly to their mailbox. In this short statement, you have given an investor a simplified view of the problem and its solution. Grand problem statements focus on issues so the audience can identify with that problem and appreciate the solution the business is trying to come up with.
4. Software Company
Problem: Manual auditing delays processes in the finance department due to the cumbersome process of verifying and counterchecking financial statements, searching for documents for reference, and manually collaborating with different teams is negatively affecting productivity. The lengthy auditing process leads to many errors where documents get misplaced or lost, and it takes a lot of time to locate and retrieve them.
Solution: An online database with search filters that simplifies the process of searching for documents.
5. Busy Office
Process: Forms for different functions like annual, sick or emergency leave need to be filled by employees for review and management approval. Human resource teams must scrutinize the forms, verify, scan, and upload them to the system. After that, the papers move to the finance department for manual re-entry, and payroll preparation begins.
Problem: Overdependence on the manual system leads to irregularities, delays, omissions, and mistakes in service delivery to employees and vendors. This promotes a poor organizational response to arising issues and wastes precious time trying to identify and correct errors.
Solution: Automating repetitive processes to help teams concentrate on the core business.
Problem: Manual transportation of machine parts from one assembly line to the next, leading to inefficiencies making it impossible to meet the yearly production goals despite hiring additional staff.
Solution: To minimize manual transportation of machine parts and increase reliance on mechanical robot arms and conveyor belts that appear between assembly lines. Such a move will prevent employees from walking back and forth across the assembly lines.
Problem Statement: Employee Efficiency to Improve Productivity
7. Healthcare Center
A medical facility operates 24/7 as patients need care round the clock.
Problem: There’s an insufficiency of medical personnel, especially on the night shift, which presents challenges during emergencies. Unfortunately, patients must wait hours for medical assistance, leading to inefficiencies.
Solution: The hospital must always have a medic on call to handle each department to prevent patients from being stranded during emergencies. Hiring part-time staff for the night shift will help alleviate the problem.
Problem Statement: Customer dissatisfaction with skin care products for Caucasian skin
Problem: Customers complain about the harshness of the sunblock cream.
Impact: Mistrust and suspicion about the quality of the products.
Solution: Product recall as it needs more analysis and tests.
9. Ecommerce Business
Problem Statement: Sales Quote Output
The quote generation display is critical as sales teams must swiftly generate quotes for customers to make their payments on time.
Problem: The quote generation display in the sales app is faulty, with sales teams complaining that the screen is prone to errors and consumes plenty of time to make it function. These issues have led to lost productivity in the sales department.
Solution: The department needs app improvements by replacing or upgrading existing software.
10. Business Startup
Problem Statement: Inefficient customer data security
Problem: storing customer data in separate data stores with questionable encryption security practices presents operational risks and substantial reputational challenges.
Solution: Enlist the services of an IT expert to help improve the process of storing customer data.
11. Consultancy Firm
Problem Statement: Sales Software Outage
Problem: Collapsing of the manual and automatic communication software for an extended period causes a communication breakdown. One section of the app experienced an outage that the mechanical system failed to pick up. Technicians tried the manual option but experienced error notifications a couple of times. The manual and automatic processes could not redirect calls to the API in a timely process leading to miscommunication and a loss in productivity. The setback arose during core business hours which had a massive negative impact on sales.
Solution: The outage could have been managed if the problem had been detected with API calls being redirected to a different location.
12. SaaS Company
Problem: Users of our software have challenges using it as they have to manually transfer information into the CRM after sending proposals. They need the CRM to track emails, phone calls, and other conversations that involve customer interactions. Without CRM integration, the software causes a frustrating experience for software users.
Solution: Send segmented surveys to determine the most effective CRMs to integrate and customize these integrations to improve user experience.
Problem Statement: Saas platform with an AI assistant for recruiters.
13. Recruitment Firms
Hiring teams experience numerous repetitive hiring tasks, including vetting applications, scheduling or rescheduling interviews, handling cancellations, responding to concerns, and shortlisting applicants at various application stages.
Problem: Plenty of tedious, monotonous manual work takes away the joy of meeting and assessing applicants that perfectly fit job descriptions.
Solution: Utilizing artificial intelligence technology or software applications that automate these processes.
14. Employee Management
Problem: Our organization needs a more secure way of onboarding and offboarding employees because the current system is cumbersome. Hiring managers have to depend on security teams to perform the same tasks.
Solution: automating repetitive onboarding and offboarding processes.
15. Learning Institutions
Problem Statement: Motivation for resolving tech issues Our school needs a work-from-home policy that allows staff to operate remotely.
Problem: Our inexperience is causing us anxiety as we may lose competent staff to our more organized competitors.
Solution: provide our teams with adequate tools and devices to protect the security of our data when staff operate remotely. We must provide secure access to cloud computing software and communication channels like Zoom or Microsoft Teams. Learning to use collaboration software will be a mandatory skill for staff.
16. Real Estate
Problem: Despite our real estate company’s decision to benchmark for free trial sign-ups that have remained steady, our paid subscriptions declined in the last few weeks. This means our business isn’t experiencing a traffic setback but a conversion challenge caused by a rise in mortgage interest rates, widespread economic challenges, pricing, and workflow processes.
Solution: Restructure the free trial to offer less value because users gain too much from the free plan, which prevents them from signing up for a paid plan. Currently, users must sign up for a paid plan to access leads of real estate deals. We should also upgrade our software to include additional features that will retain investors on our platform.
17. Software Application
Problem: Users of our newspaper app avoid sharing content through the app and instead export the content from the app. This poses a challenge in our marketing strategy because potential customers need to be made aware that the content shared originates from our app leading to lower conversion rates. It also poses a challenge for app users as exporting range is time-consuming and could decrease app usage.
18. Sales Strategies
Problem: Sales reps conduct manual planning using Excel spreadsheets and typed printout lists. They need more time which leads to difficulty in meeting targets. It also causes challenges in knowing which targets to visit, which affects sales and the inability to meet set goals.
19. Customer Care
Problem: customers call the contact center seeking updates on their applications. Due to the vast volume, many applicants wait long hours to speak to an agent because the call center is understaffed. Employees are ill-equipped and lack adequate access to applicants’ track records, further compounding the backlog. The outcome leads to a frustrating experience for both applicants and staff.
Problem Statement: Using project management software for collaboration improves efficiency and productivity.
20. Problem: Communication breakdown caused by overreliance on an inefficient manual system.
Solution: Introducing technology by integrating a reliable project management system.
21. Problem Statement: Stay-at-home-mums need an avenue to feel connected to a support group as they spend long periods alone.
Solution: An app or social media channel where these mums can interact and network while attending to their babies.
22. Digital Transformation
Problem Statement: Customers need a solution to help them create websites without overreliance on IT experts.
Problem: People detest contacting IT specialists as the process is cumbersome.
Solution: Apps that offer guidance to web users in creating simple websites.
23. Agricultural Firm
Problem Statement: Preserving perishables to minimize wastage.
Problem: Though Jack& Jill Farms provides products to many supermarkets across the country, they consistently experience a loss due to their limited storage capacity and the fact that most of their products are highly perishable.
Solution: Maintain an efficient supply chain to guarantee a ready market once the product leaves the farms. The firm must invest in modern storage facilities to improve preservation and shipping.
24. Waste Management
Problem Statement: Conduct a study on the proper waste management system.
Problem: Manufacturing firms in my area are releasing industrial chemicals into the river leading to environmental degradation.
Solution: Present a research proposal to the city authorities requesting permission to conduct a proper waste management system analysis and devise a viable solution.
25. Virtual Assistant
Problem: Challenges onboarding new clients, which lead to prolonged periods of idleness and a struggle to meet basic needs
Solution: Integrating new technology in marketing and creating awareness for the business.
Other examples of problem statement ideas include:
26. Problem: Fierce competition
Solution: Market the business online and offline using technology and modern strategies.
27. Problem: Unrealistic expectations
Solution: Manage expectations by setting realistic goals.
28. Problem: Challenges in hiring suitable candidates
Solution: Shortlist suitable applicants and review each application noting an applicant’s experience level and skills.
29. Problem: Cyber security threats that lead to unauthorized access to sensitive data.
Solution: Engaging the services of an IT expert.
30. Problem: challenges in gaining client trust
Solution: Develop healthy relationships to improve trust.
31. Problem: Financial setbacks
Solution: Engage the services of a financial expert who can help streamline cash flows and budgetary allocations and share helpful insights.
32. Problem: Uncertainty about the future and not being able to predict customer and market trends
Solution: Consulting the services of an expert who can predict essential trends.
33. Problem: Resisting change.
Solution: Know when to embrace change by firing and hiring new staff or overhauling processes to improve efficiency.
34. Problem: Employee retention
Solution: Addressing employee challenges and offering incentives, and rewarding job performance
35. Problem: Lack of startup capital
Solution: Use locally available material, start small, and consistently plow profits into the business.
36. Problem: Fluctuating prices due to inflation
Problem Statement: Diversify and Optimize
Solution: Altering business models to suit the current prevailing situation.
37. Problem: Administrative Workload
Solution: Outsourcing or hiring temporary staff to handle bookkeeping, repetitive tasks or automating workflows.
38. Problem: Time Management Challenges
Solution: Proper planning and organization by prioritizing and delegating tasks, especially those with short turnaround periods.
39. Problem: Marketing And Advertising Challenges
Solution: Defining what strategies would work best by researching the market and identifying the ideal target market. From there, develop a plan that targets that group.
40. Problem: Low Business Leads To Client Over-Dependence
Solution: Diversify your client base to prevent closing the shop once a major client closes their account with you.
41. Problem: Indiscipline In Money Management
Solution: Learning good financial habits and disciplining oneself to stick to set rules. A business should have a diversified client base to cushion the company when a single client quits or defaults payments.
42. Problem: Work-Related Pressure Leading To Fatigue
Solution: Most successful business owners fall into the habit of overworking, leading to burnout and fatigue. Success doesn’t mean slavery but the ability to integrate balance into one’s activities.
43. Problem: Founder Dependence
Solution: A business that stagnates without its founder is a business with a time limit.
44. Problem Statement: Balancing Growth And Quality
Problem: sometimes, a business must sacrifice to scale up. This means that you may only be able to manage some client relationships personally.
Solution: Navigate the process to allow growth without interfering with the brand.
45. Problem: Meeting Customer Demand
Solution: Awareness of what the customer wants and prioritizing their needs
46. Problem: Maintaining quality customer relations
Solution: Consistency, patience, and nurturing healthy relationships
47. Problem: Preserving a good reputation
The speed of information makes tracking your business’s public image challenging.
Solution: Utilize software or companies that track social media for mentions of your company. With technology, you can get notifications about an arising issue and be able to address it immediately.
48. Problem: Marketing in a saturated marketplace
Solution: Market strategically using unique and compelling messages to attract potential clients
49. Problem: Choosing the right tools
Solution: Identify the need and look for tools that help meet that specific need.
50. Problem: Globalization
Understanding foreign cultures are crucial to penetrating new markets with existing products or services.
Solution: Altering designs to accommodate new markets
Every successful company starts by creating a solution to a need, an important reason your business needs to have a problem statement. The better you articulate the problem, the more treasured your solution will be. Most companies make the mistake of not giving the problem as much importance as the solution. Instead, many entrepreneurs concentrate on the solution and completely forget to explain why the problem is essential. Before your business markets a solution to a problem, make sure your clientele is aware of the problem your business is solving, which is made clear through your problem statement. Comprehensively articulating a problem statement help in improving the effectiveness of your business.