What are the facts that you need to know about Project charter in Project management?
A Project Charter can be seen as a letter that gives authorization to a Project Manager to start a project or move a project to the next level.
Some of the components of a Project Charter includes:
#1 General project approach
I have said it that a project is a problem that is scheduled to be solved. That is why you need a cost-effective approach to solving the problem.
I believe while we are in High school, we studied Mathematics and some equations have more than one way of solving them.
You have to choose the one that you are convenient with.
This section of the project charter will explain the project deliverables, process stages, the objectives you want to achieve as well as your project organisation.
#2 Constraints and assumptions
While I was talking about Project statement of work, I have talked about constraints and assumptions. You know what it means I assume.
You are hoping that things will still remain the same. I gave you the example of a Programmer in your employment.
You may also assume that the Dollar exchange rate will still remain the same. All this must be part of your project charter.
While I was discussing the statement of work in my previous article, I have made mention of risks. There are three levels of risks in a project which are high risks, medium and low risks.
From this document, you have to identify some of the high risks for your project. This will also help you to come up with an effective strategy for mitigating those risks.
#4 Project stakeholders
This is another important element of your project.
You must know their level of involvement and contribution to the project as well as how they want to be communicated.
The project charter components study will help you to know how you can approach your stakeholders, understand their needs and do projects that add values to your stakeholders.
#5 Project purpose
One of the components of a Project Charter is the project purpose. It shows the reasons why the organisation is embarking on the project in the first place.
I have made it clear that if the reason for the project is not in line with the vision and mission statement of the organisation, there is no need wasting money on the project.
Understanding the project charter components will help to know the purpose of your project and work towards achieving those objectives.
#6 Problem statement
A Scholar once said a Project is a problem that is scheduled to be solved. One of the components of a Project charter is the reason why we have to spend such a huge amount of money on the project.
You have to state the problems that necessitate the project. This will help the top management to decide on whether to continue with the project or not.
#7 Project authorization
The Project Charter will also show lists of individuals who have the power to control the project as well as decide on what role each one of them is going to play in the course of managing the project.
This at times helps us to avoid role conflict and ensure accountability in the project.
#8 Scope definition
When we talk about a scope, we are talking about what is and what is not part of a project. When this is clearly written for everyone to see.
It will help to remove every ambiguity in the project. This can also help us to get stakeholder buy-in for a project.
There are other things to note when you are preparing a Project Charter…
I said a project is a problem that is scheduled to be solved. In creating a Project charter, you have to state how this project that you are about to carry out as it relates to the problem on ground.
You must state the reasons why it is so important to do this project now. I have said it that there are always many proposals begging for the attention of the organisation.
If the project is not that urgent, why can’t we postpone it until a future date?
You also have to explain in this column the ways the project will address the business need as well as the threats that will not allow you to achieve the objectives of your project.
Adequate use of Project charter in project management will help the project manager to identify obstacles that will not help the organisation to achieve the project objectives.
#10 Consider constraints and assumptions
You have to address any constraints or failure of assumptions that will not allow you and your team members to achieve the objectives of the project.
You have to know if there are any time, cost scope or other issues that might limit the way you and your team members can approach the project.
It may be that you do not have enough money or time is not just there to explore as far as the project is concerned.
You also need to know if there are factors that you and your team members will pretend to be true so that you can move forward.
This pretence might come so that the project can start. That does not mean you will not have a precautionary measure in case of any eventuality.
You also have to know if there is any risk of project delivery. Most at times, there is always this extra time that you can delay a project and it will not affect the deadline of a project.
You also need to find out if there are any project constraints.
This at times can limit the options that you have as far as external suppliers or other project option is concerned. You really have to know what is available for a particular project.
You also have to know the suitability of the software that you are able to adopt. Who are the manufacturers? How long have they been in business? What is their track record as well as their after sales service capabilities?
The creation of Project charter in project management becomes necessary because in project management, you got to have a direction as far as what you want to achieve your project is concerned.
Having a clear blueprint will help you to understand some of the deliverables of your project, who will handle the project as well as other parameters for your project.
You also have to know if you are going to face any challenge as far as resource availability is concerned. Are you using an internal or external resource or combination of both? What is the level of commitment of your proposed team members to their primary engagement? Who has the power to release resources for your project? all this must be addressed before the project kicks off officially.
You have to know if your project will involve the use of internal or external resources. This is to know how long they will be available as well as the cost implication of their engagements. You will also know what will be affected during the course of their engagement to your project.
Project charter in project management helps the Project manager to understand if they have all that is needed in terms of resources to achieve the objectives of the project. You will know whether you need to look outside your organisation for team members.