By Keith Jackson and the Mind Tools Team
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The Quantitative Strategic Planning Matrix (QSPM)

Choosing the Best Strategic Way Forward

The Quantitative Strategic Planning Matrix (QSPM)

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When choosing a strategy, base your decision on facts, not intuition.

Organizations spend a lot of time and effort on strategy formulation.

Often, there are several different approaches or strategies that the organization could follow. But how do you decide which option is best? Do you rely on intuition, or take a more objective approach?

Not surprisingly, you need to base your decision on facts, not gut feelings. But how do you do this, particularly when the effects of different strategies can be so different?

The Quantitative Strategic Planning Matrix (QSPM) helps you address this question. It gives you a systematic approach for evaluating alternate strategies, and helps you decide which strategy is best suited to your organization. The tool was developed by Fred R. David, and was first published in the Long Range Planning Journal in 1986.

Understanding the Matrix

QSPM is based on three primary inputs:

  • The critical success factors of your business unit.
  • The relative importance of each of these critical success factors.
  • How you rate a particular strategy by each success factor.

These inputs are used to evaluate the relative attractiveness of different strategies. This relative attractiveness is expressed in terms of a number, the "Sum Total Attractiveness Score". The higher this score is, the more attractive the strategy is.

Follow the step-by-step guide below for constructing a QSPM....

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