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Project Management Principles: the Concept

Phase Module 2
1. The Project Manager Role
2. Project Stakeholders
3. Project Concept life-cycle phase
4. Setting your goal(s) and justifying them
5. Writing the Project Charter
6. Identifying success criteria & measurable outcomes
7. Project assumptions, constraints and risks plus roles & responsibilities
8. Identifying stakeholders
9. Appoint the team and kick off the project
10. Quick Summary of Module 2.

Topic 1: The Project Manager Role

Welcome to Module 2 of the Project Management Principles Subject.
In the last module we overviewed what a project is and how it should be managed
using modern Project Management methods.
In this module we are going to discuss:
o Project Managers: what the job role entails
o Project stakeholders: who they are
o Concept life-cycle phase in more detail, including:
Setting your goals and justifying them
Writing the Project Charter
Identifying success criteria and measurable objectives
Project assumptions, constraints and risks plus identifying roles &
Identifying stakeholders
The Project Team and Kick-off Meetings
What is the role of a Project Manager?
Project Managers are sort after people. Job demand for effective project managers
has grown enormously over the last few decades. Project Managers that are
experienced and have successfully led projects in the past are rewarded with some
of the highest salary packages in industry, below upper management. There is an
article in your readings that outlines average Project Manager Salarys across 2011.

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First, what is the PM not they are NOT the project owner that is the person or
organisation sponsoring (paying for) the project.
The PM is the person responsible for carrying out the day-to-day management of
the project.
Appointed by the owner of the project, be that the organisation running the project
or a specific Project Sponsor.
They will need an overall appreciation of everything that is involved in the project
because they are the key contact between the project team and the project sponsor
and/or upper management. They are the go-to person for information about the
project requirements, progress and performance.
PMBoK says the project manager should have three characteristics:
o KNOWLEDGE of PM via the Nine knowledge areas
o PERFORMANCE (performance of applying knowledge) via the 42
management processes
o PERSONAL characteristics that make them effective at leading the team and
balancing the constraints so the project objective is met.
Ultimately they have responsibility for managing the project team so that the agreed
project objective is reached on time, within budget, to the agreed quality
requirements. However, they may operate in an environment where between their
and the project sponsor role is a portfolio manager. If this is the case the Portfolio
Manager who usually governs a number of projects would be responsible for
any decision on continuing or ceasing the project based on the strategic priorities of
the organisation it is running in and in consultation with the Sponsor and possibly an
official project review panel.
Need to have multiple skills including: in depth knowledge of project management,
good communication and personnel skills and an ability to perform efficiently and
effectively under constraints such as time and budget. Also usually need a sound
technical knowledge of the technical discipline the project is being run in. Some
argue what is most important is having good project management skills, that
technical knowledge isnt necessary. However, there is no denying that having in-
depth technical knowledge of the project greatly assists a PM in their understanding
of project requirements and constraints, in their ability to relate to project team
members and their ability to communicate technical issues to all stakeholders.
Can agree successful Project Managers must actually not only have sound
technical knowledge and in depth knowledge of Project Management, they also
need emotional as well as intellectual intelligence (EQ and IQ).
If you investigate what soft skills are you will see why having high emotional
intelligence is important!
Soft Skills are behavioural competencies. Also known as Interpersonal Skills, or
people skills, they include proficiencies such as communication skills, conflict
resolution and negotiation, personal effectiveness, creative problem solving,
strategic thinking, team building, influencing skills and selling skills, to name a few.
is the definition from Wikipedia.
As a result there are a limited number of the population that are likely to make really
good project managers.
Some organisations use personality trait tests such as the Myer-Briggs test that
categorises personalities into 16 types that are combinations of: Introvert, Sensing,
Thinking, Judging, Extravert, iNtuitive, Feeling, Perceiving. Combinations and

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extent of these tendencies are used by many companies to assess suitability for a
job role and to help construct teams of people that cover a range of personality
traits to help in ensuring the team has people of varying natural types in the hope
that they will better complement each others skills.
One of the readings is an article by Max Wideman where he attempts to break
down the general population on the basis of MBTI for suitability of project work.
Interestingly his findings indicate about 30% of the general public are probably not
suited to working on Projects in any team or leadership role. They believe 40-45%
of the population are suitable for some type of project management leadership role
and 2025% are followers, but that only a very few 1-2 % of the population are the
appropriate types for managing project conceptualisation stage.
Should you take notice of this? Maybe not there are always exceptions to the rule.
However you should recognise that some employment agencies and organisations
where you may wish to work will and for that reason it can be useful to be aware of
your personality type and what type of project role that is likely to make you
considered suitable for.
Personally, while I think being aware of your MBTI can be useful, Id recommend
that you look at the list of traits identified next for Project Managers and - if you wish
to work in this role - honestly appraise your own abilities against those listed. If you
can truthfully say that you have the majority of these traits Project Management as
a discipline would welcome your entry into this career. The more effective Project
Managers we have trained in industry the higher the number of successful projects
there will be run! If however you know that you would have issues with many of
these traits Id be inclined to place your energies elsewhere... possible still in project
work but aiming for a team role rather than a leadership role. If you are in a situation
where you know you will be expected to work in project teams regardless of
whether you believe you are suited to project work or not, then enrolling in and
undertaking some formal studies on Project Management will definitely make your
life easier, but if you recognise being a PM is not your ultimate goal then I would be
likely to limit your studies to vocational levels (Cert IV or Diploma).
See the SLIDE of points drawn from multiple sources of successful Project Manager
o Can inspire o Collaborative o Stick to
o Communicate well management style communication
o Has integrity and o Adaptable schedules
enthusiasm o Resourceful o Have expertise in
o Team-builder o Great PM applied to their
o Competent communicator field
o Has empathy and o Flexible o Use fair consensus-
problem solves o Naturally command building to manage
o Cool under authority conflict
pressure o Can sift data well o Use networks
o Ability to delegate o Set, observe, re- internally &
o Have foresight evaluate priorities externally to
o Are organised o Ask good questions problem solve
o Know how to lead and listen o Enjoy their work!
o Good o Dont use
communicators information as a
o Pragmatic weapon
o Empathetic

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If seeking to be a Project Manager the hardest task will be getting an organisation to

appoint you to the role before you have had experience running projects that have
been successful. I am sure many of you will already have experienced the
frustration of having gained training in a field to find that the great majority of
employment opportunities are offered only for those with previous experience! This
is an issue for anyone looking to fulfil a leadership role someone has to invest the
faith in you to start off with for you to gain the experience that everyone places so
much importance on. Often this trust will only be placed in people that have worked
within an organisation on projects as a team member for some time, though there
will always be the occasional situation where a newbie is given a chance. However,
when seeking to get this type of position look for mentors both within and without the
organisation. In the rest of this SUBJECT you will find Expert Judgement referred
to quite often as a technique for performing management processes. Obviously if it
is your first time running a project, you may be lacking in this area. However, dont
read expert judgement as just you own. If the organisation uses Portfolio
Managers this job role entails providing mentorship to the Project Managers
assigned to projects under their authority. They are a great example of the sort of
people that can provide you with their expert judgement to help you carry out
various processes. If there are no portfolio managers at this level seek out mentor
relationships with other Project Managers that do have more experience. The
Internet can be an invaluable resource also, allowing you to access the experience
and advice of project and portfolio managers with a wealth of experience. Many of
these people are more than willing to put their experiences in writing, as you will find
if you access the reading resources provided with these modules.
Oh and if you are going to agree to managing a project, do try to form an
understanding of it as quickly as possible so that, at a personal level, you can form a
decision about whether it is a good potential project. Being offered a PM role for a
project that seems deemed to fail can be a very effective nail in the coffin for your
aspirations of making a career as a project manager!
Before progressing to the next topic encourage to look at the Readings Tab. There
are some detailed descriptions of Project Manager Job Roles. Also have a go at the
online quiz to find out what Myer-Brigg type you are and read the Max Wideman
article that evaluates which Myer-Brigg personality types are most suited to project
management job roles.

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Useful Links
VIDEO: (The Project Manager Role) (Explanation of how Portfolio
Management helps with strategic analysis and selection of projects).
WEB: USA Project
Manager Job Description
description UK description of Project Manager Job Role
Highest-Salaries-for-Project-Managers.aspx See for average figures and comments
by people working in the field.
See To read an article that
researches which Myer-Briggs Personality Types are best suited to different roles in
Project Management
Then do the questionnaire to
find out roughly what Myer-Briggs Type you are (not a replacement for having a full
Myers-Brigg evaluation). Slide show on the Project
Portfolio Manager Job role. slideshow about the power
of politics within an organisation. explanation of soft skills and their importance

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Topic 2: Project Stakeholders
Stakeholders: In essence the people involved in your project.
PMBoK defines as persons or organisations (e.g. customers, sponsors, performing
organisation, the public) who are actively involved in the project or whose interests
may be positively or negatively affected by the performance or completion of the
project. PMBOK ,Ed 4.(2008)
Obviously the Project Manager and Project Team members are stakeholders, but
when you examine the PMBoK definition you will see there are a whole lot more
people that can be described as stakeholders also. For instance if the end user of a
project deliverable is the public, then the public becomes an important stakeholder
in your project (for instance if creating a public space or service, for example a
Museum or a web site). As the slide shows you there are
It is important to recognize both who the stakeholders in a project are and what their
stake in it is. Just because a person or organisation is a stakeholder in a project
does not mean that they will champion it or work hard for its success. Just as
important is recognising those stakeholders with vested interests in seeing the
project fail as all sorts of risks to the project can be created by this group.
In Module 1, Topic 2 we talked about what Project Management is and examined
some of the key reasons for project success. High on the list were management and
stakeholder support as well as involvement from end users. This highlights just why
it is so important as early as possible in your project to work out who your
stakeholders are and assess exactly what their stake in the project is. You need to
get the right people on side as soon as possible.
Comprehensive identification of stakeholders helps the Project Manager and their
team understand what individual stakeholders interests are. This is why one of the
Initialisation processes we will look at in the Concept stage is Identifying
Stakeholders. Part of this process will be identifying who are internal stakeholders
and who are external basically who is part of your organisation and who is not, as
many projects nowadays require some outsourcing of work and it would be very rare
for everything in a project (resources and work) to be able to be supplied internally.
Understanding the Organisational Structure of the company the project runs within is
also important for recognising who your stakeholders are. If you are running a
project for an external client understanding their companys organisational structure
can also be useful. This is because the hierarchy of authority is not always obvious.
People that may appear to be in key roles may in fact be in more of a figurehead or
caretaker than a decision maker. Knowing who the decision makers are and who
has influence on these decision makers may be important for gaining sufficient
support and resources for a project.
The size of the organisation that the project is being run in can also obviously
influence the number of stakeholders there are. For instance, in large organisations
that run many projects there will normally be a specialist Project Management
Office or PMO that is tasked with providing support functions to all projects
being run. A PMO may provide administrative support, guidance on project
management methodologies and templates, centralised communication and
mentoring, training and support for both Project Managers and staff. In this situation
the PMO staff you work with should also be considered stakeholders as the
effectiveness of their support of your project can be critical for the projects success.
There may also be Portfolio Managers within the organisation that operate at a more
strategic level above the PM role. The Portfolio Manager being a strategic role
means that they may have had more involvement at the initial Concept stage of the

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project than the PM, who may not be appointed until after the decision to proceed to
planning for a project. In these situations the Portfolio Manager (and possibly a
review board) can have the responsibility for reviewing and even recommending
cancellation of a project, which makes them a very important stakeholder in the
It is also likely that you will in a project have a variety of managers in addition to
upper management such as the companys executive and portfolio managers. As
projects need both administrative and technical skills there are likely to be both
functional and operational managers that are stakeholders. Functional managers
are managers of sections that provide services such as procurement, accounting
and human resources. Operational managers are people that manage core
business areas such as R&D, manufacturing or maintenance. If a project is an
internal one it is possible that the end result will be handed over to an operational
manager whose team will then implement the ongoing support and maintenance of
the project deliverables.
Identifying your stakeholders effectively is important for many reasons including:
o Making sure the right people have input to the planning
o identifying project champions who will help your project be promoted and then
implemented enthusiastically
o being aware of stakeholders that may cause problems for the project so that
you can work to bring them on side or work to reduce their possible negative
impact. This doesnt mean ignoring valid concerns it is always important to
keep an open mind and ear to both positive and negative feedback on a
project. Being blindly optimistic about a project is never wise. However, some
stakeholders may harbour their own personal reasons for wanting to see a
project fail and recognising this is an important part of managing all your
projects stakeholders.
o Topic 8 will look at the identifying stakeholders process in greater detail.
Before progressing to the next topic encourage to look at the Readings Tab. I would
recommend exploring the Max Wideman isaacons and job role index as it has a
wealth of information about stakeholders and the type of responsibilities they are
likely to have within a project.

Principles of Project Management Module 2 Page 7 of 26

Useful Links
VIDEO: Who is a stakeholder? Identify who your stakeholders are,

helping you to understand the importance of doing this as early as possible in the
project. Identifying and understanding

stakeholders, including internal and external stakeholders Managing stakeholder expectations

WEB: Stakeholder
Management Manage
Your Stakeholders or They Will Manage You slideshow about
project organisational structures that summarises the main types of structures and
how much influence the PM is likely to have in each. Slide show on the Project
Portfolio Manager Job role. Slide show explaining the
Project Sponsor / Champion / Owner role. slideshow about the power
of politics within an organisation. Index for all job role descriptions on
the Max Wideman website.

Principles of Project Management Module 2 Page 8 of 26

Topic 3: Project Concept life-cycle phase
You will remember from Module 1 that a project is commonly seen as having a four stage
project life-cycle. We used the acronym CDEF to represent it, being the Concept,
Development, Execution and Finishing stages. In this topic we will provide an overview of the
management processes that occur in the starting or Concept stage of a project.
The concept phase is where the concept is conceived, investigated for its feasibility,
formally proposed and a decision made to develop it, signed off on by the sponsor
and major stakeholders. This includes:
o Identification of the project goal
Project goals can be identified in many ways which Topic 4 will
examine, ranging from truly original ideas (the Apple iPod) through to
receipt of a Statement of Work as part of a tendering process (to build
a mine site).
o The goal then needs to be evaluated such as:
By using SMART analysis
By analysing the Statement of Work (or tender document)
By writing a Business Case.
o The projects feasibility may need to be investigated, particularly if your
organisation is in the business of creating brand new products or services.
The greater the level of uncertainty regarding a project the more useful it can
be to perform a feasibility study.
You can perform a feasibility study to work out if it is possible to create
the product or service the goal aims to achieve. You can also carry out
a study to investigate different ways of producing the project goal.
You can then write a Feasibility Report to present the findings of a
study or simply to provide analysis of feasible methods of creating the
project outcome. A feasibility report can either recommend whether the
project goal is feasible to be produced or which way is best to produce
it or it may do both. Largely depends on the type of project goal and
the sponsoring organisations familiarity with producing the deliverable.
o Also need to consider the suitability of the project for the organisation the
project goal is to be is implemented in. Delivering a project on time, to scope,
within budget and to agreed standards will still be seen in the long term as a
failure if its end deliverable actually ends up not being suitable for the
environment it is implemented in. For instance the best planned out and
implemented new software product in the world, if it doesnt end up providing
what the business needs, wont be utilised and so will end up being
considered a failure.
o After sufficient consideration of Business Case, SOW, Feasibility reports
agreement needs to be achieved that the project is suitable to initiate. If upper
management after assessing these documents agrees the project is worth
further investigation a formal document will need to be prepared to authorise
the projects start-up.
o The main mechanism for this is usually called a Project Charter. It may be
written by the Project Sponsor or the Project Manager or a combination of
both. What is vital is that it is signed off on by the key stakeholders such as

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the Project Sponsor, the Client if that is a third party and the Project Manager.
Topics 5 to 7 will look in more depth at writing a Project Charter.
o Once the Project Charter has been signed off, the next process for project
start-up is Stakeholder Identification. This will be performed to identify
everyone who has a vested interest in the project (examined in Topic 8). The
key stakeholders are already known from the Charter, but there are often
many more stakeholders that need consideration. Going through some formal
analysis of who they are and what their interest is will definitely help the PM
manage their project more effectively, as discussed in our last Topic on
o Lastly the project concept phase can conclude with a kick-off meeting held for
the newly formed Project Team to recognise the end of the Concept stage and
formally start of the Development stage. Topic 9 will explore bringing the
project team together in more detail.
There are two management processes used in the Project Concept phase both of
which we look at in following topics:
o Develop project charter
o Identify stakeholders
Both these processes are Initialisation processes, but the Charter is part of the
Integration Knowledge area and identifying stakeholders is part of the
Communication knowledge area, for obvious reasons. The Charter is a key
document for drawing together all the separate pieces of information about the
project, such as its scope, the stakeholders, initial timelines and budget as well as
assumptions and constraints. The identifying stakeholders process is key to being
able to effectively communicate throughout the project because the result of it
should be documented acknowledgment of all stakeholders and their interest in the
project, which thereby defines who to talk to and what they need communicated.
While the Initiating process group is utilised for the Concept phase of a projects life
cycle it is worth remembering that a complex project may well be broken up into a
series of projects or phases to help make them easier to manage. If this is the case
with a project you are involved with remember that initiating processes should then
be applied at the start of each phase of the project not just the once. If the aim is
to make managing a complex project easier by splitting it up, then the same project
management processes will need to be applied to each phase. Doing this helps
strategic and higher management keep re-focusing on the relevance of the project
to its business case and allows for a decision to be made as to whether the project
should continue, be delayed or even discontinued. While the description of a
successful project may be that it is completed to scope, within the schedule and
budget planned and to the agreed standards of the key stakeholders, the attempt to
achieve this, if for one reason or another no longer aligns with the needs of the
organisation it is being carried out for, will despite all efforts end up being deemed a
In the next topic we will look at defining and properly assessing your Project Goal.
o Before progressing to the next topic encourage to look at the Readings Tab.
The Project Connections website provides a useful list of resources for
helping with the Concept phase of a project, including a checklist you can
adapt to help check off all processes being followed. The Tasmanian
Government web site is also worth checking many useful fact sheets as well
as templates.

Principles of Project Management Module 2 Page 10 of 26

Useful Links
VIDEO: Project life cycle, phases and
process groups Project life cycle phases, differing
on discipline
WEB: lists and
provides access to a series of templates that may be used to assist in the Concept
Phase of a project.
provides a checklist for the end of concept phase stage of a project, with detailed
ge Factsheets and templates for initiating projects, including feasibility and business
case templates. A broad overview of the
planning processes of a project starting at Analysis of opportunities.

Principles of Project Management Module 2 Page 11 of 26

Topic 4: Setting your goal(s) and justifying them
Identifying a project goal. Project goals are formed in many different ways:
o Someone has a light-bulb moment
o Organisation may exist to build products in which case customers may bring
in ideas for projects, or in-house think-tanks come up with them
o Someone recognises an opportunity
o A business deficiency highlights the need for a project
o To do the business of the company projects may be required, in which case
the goal will be quite obvious, e.g. the company is a mining company, it
therefore needs to run exploration projects and mine construction projects
o Organisation may be in the business of running projects for others in which
case the tender or statement of work (SOW) document would identify the goal
for you. It is still important to assess whether winning the tender is going to
benefit the business though. Unfortunately too many companies have suffered
financial penalties or even gone bankrupt by seeing winning the tender as
the end goal, rather than profiting from the fulfilment of the tenders statement
of work.
If your business actually thinks up project goals (rather than applies to fulfil others)
make sure that the goal is stated in as clear a way as possible as specifically as
possible. For a simple analogy we will look at the cake making example we
illustrated in Module 1.
o The goal to make a cake. Seems clear enough but is it?
o Why are we making the cake? What type of cake do we want? Where will it be
made? How much money can be used on ingredients? What is the time frame
for making the cake? How many people want a slice of the cake? A simple
goal of make a cake no longer seems sufficient.
o Ask the questions and understand the answers and we can set a far more
realistic and specific goal.
o Turns out you are making the cake for a wedding for a good friend. The friend
likes chocolate mud cake and there are 60 people invited. You will make it in
your own kitchen. The wedding is one month away and the cake needs to be
transported to the location of the venue so will need to be finished two days
earlier. Your friend does want formal wedding cake decorations. Personal
budget of $150.
o Our goal would be a lot clearer if it were changed to Make chocolate mud
cake day to feed 60 people at a wedding in 1month, formally decorated and
finished two days prior for transporting to the venue.
A common method for evaluating goals is SMART analysis:
SMART analysis
o Specific
o Measurable
o Achievable
o Realistic
o Time framed

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If we apply the SMART technique to our original goal it would fail sadly. With the
limited information we had there was no way of evaluating whether the goal was
achievable and realistic, and no way of knowing the time frame and how to measure
The new goal is specific enough to provide a means of measurement (chocolate/
feed 60), and assessable for whether it is a realistic goal that you can achieve given
your kitchen resources, allocated budget and time frame. If you are a good cook and
have a decent kitchen the good news is your goal for your friends birthday present
is a SMART one. If you dont have access to an oven, and have never cooked a
cake in your life, it is much better you change your goal now than try and achieve it
in the timeframe provided.
While this is a very simple example the same principles apply to every project.
However, identifying and justifying a project goal will often require a lot more work
than just a simple SMART analysis.
Necessary to properly evaluate the goal if your own idea or a project via tender.
Many companies have gone bankrupt by tendering for projects that ended up being
not suitable to their abilities. When responding to tenders make sure an in depth
assessment is done of the Statement of Work (SOW).
Build a Business Case to assess the reasons for why the project should be run.
Main job is to work out if the project is worth making the required investment in time,
money and resources from a business standpoint.
The business case should contain:
o The background to the proposal and its objective
o The Business need or problem the project would seek to address
o Cost benefit analysis to assess if it is a sound investment/decision
o Preliminary requirements and estimates
o Analysis of options and recommendation
Dependent on the project goal more or less analysis may be done
o Building a website for a website developer doesnt need assessing for
o Inventing a brand new product (i.e. mobile phone) does
Investigate project feasibility, if necessary, via:
Feasibility Study and a Report of its findings
o May examine if goal is feasible to create
o May examine several methods of creating and recommend one option
o Traditionally a Feasibility study assesses:
Technological feasibility (can it be done given available resources /
Operational feasibility (how well it may solve problem/opportunity and
what people / social issues may arise)
Legal feasibility (will result conflict with any legislation: privacy, security
Schedule feasibility (can project be performed in a reasonable

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Financial feasibility (Cost Benefit Analysis).
Market potential may also need to be assessed, particularly for
completely new products.
o Broader scope than a CBA though may include the Cost Benefit Analysis as
the way of assessing the economic feasibility if project. CBA should assess
Return on Investment and compare costs to build against costs saved
across life of project result.
Once a project goal is properly assessed and a decision made project is feasible
and will benefit the company a formal authorisation document needs to be drawn up.
The next topic looks at how to do this by writing your project charter.
Before progressing to the next topic encourage to look at the Readings Tab. The
YouTube movies give a good overview of writing SMART goals and assessing
project risk via a feasibility study, but I particularly recommend you look at The
Feasibility Study slide show on the University of Toronto website as it provides a
nice clear explanation on Feasibility studies and CBA.

Useful Links
VIDEO: Writing SMART goals Assessing project risk through a
feasibility study.
WEB: SMART goals Evaluating using the SMART technique data/assets/pdf_file/0008/78056/CConducting
_a_Feasibility_Study_Fact_Sheet.pdf Fact sheet on Feasibility Studies from
Tasmanian Govt data/assets/pdf_file/0004/78061/Developing_
a_Business_Case_Fact_Sheet.pdf Fact sheet for developing a business case from
Tasmanian Govt data/assets/pdf_file/0009/78048/Checklist_for
_Major_Business_Initiatives_Fact_Sheet.pdf Example of evaluating a project idea
from Tasmanian Govt
f Sample Feasibility Study and cost benefit analysis Excellent PowerPoint
outlining main steps of Feasibility Study and Cost Benefit Analysis

Principles of Project Management Module 2 Page 14 of 26

Topic 5: Writing the Project Charter
Writing the Project Charter is seen as part of Integration Management, which is a
key role of the project manager. Developing it is the first initiating process that
should be carried out in managing a project, according to PMIs standard, PMBoK.
For each management process PMBoK recommends a series of inputs
(information to help you build the process from), suggest Tools and Techniques
which are suggestions of way to DO the process and finally outputs, which are
what the process should output or create.
Inputs for the Project Charter should include :
o Statement of work, business case, any contracts / tenders used and should
also consider enterprise environmental factors and any organisational process
Organisational Process Assets are information the organisation holds from the past
(hence assets). So for a Charter this should include examination of Charters written
for past projects. A key indicator of potential project success is an organisation
having already performed successful projects. Any past projects should have
produced documentation (such as Charters) that the current project can benefit from
Tools and Techniques for developing the Charter are expert judgement. In other
words the person or people that develop the Charter should have a good
understanding of the project and how to write Project Charters for the organisations
and project requirements. Of course expert judgement relies on someone being an
expert in initiating projects and this expertise is not always available. If it is your
first attempt at writing a Charter recognise that expert judgement doesnt have to
be your own - find a mentor who can advise and direct you.
There is only a single output from the Develop Project Charter process: the
Project Charter.
Charters vary company-to-company but may contain:
o Project Title
o Description of project purpose, inc business need / justifications which may be
drawn from the Business Case
o High level project / product description to outline preliminary project scope
o Summary schedule (start/end/significant milestone dates)
o Summary project budget which would be a rough order of magnitude (ROM)
o Measurable project objectives and their success criteria
o Summary of the planned approach ( high level requirements)
o Roles & responsibilities including who authorises the Charter and who signs
off on project deliverables
o Who the assigned Project Manager is with contact details
o Sign-off section for key stakeholders with date of authorisation (must include
o Comments area for stakeholders to note any issues

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The Charter may derive descriptions of project objectives, including the business
need / justifications straight from the Business case.
The summary schedule sets out a rough outline of the project timeline.
o Should have start and end dates, with the start date being the beginning of the
Concept stage of the Project (when the goal was initially identified)
o Should outline the timeline through to project end by marking out main
o Milestones are key dates that can be used as significant markers of progress
through a project. For instance the date you want the Project Charter signed
off on, and the date you want the execution phase of the project to begin. If
the project is based on a contract then key dates will probably be contained
within it.
The summary budget should be included, though acknowledged as a rough order of
magnitude estimate as it cant be expected that accurate estimates can be made
before the scope of the project has been detailed, time durations and resource
requirements estimated etc. Past projects of a similar nature can often provide
useful information for this.
Project Charter may be written by the Project Sponsor or the Project Manager. Many
argue it should be the Sponsor as they are ultimately responsible for oversight and
funding of the project, others argue the PM should as they are the ones that will
have to develop plans and manage throughout. Ultimately what is important is that
the person paying for the project (the Sponsor) is the person who signs the Charter,
thereby allocating authority to the Project Manager to take the project forward to
Purposes of writing the charter include:
o Getting buy-in and authorisation is achieved through signing off of the Charter.
o The different contexts your Project Charter can be used in throughout the
Defines the project and establishes the goal posts from which the
project can be started
Helps ensure project has been properly assessed so that an
unsuitable or risky project isnt started
Helps establish the lines of authority for the project
Delegates responsibility to PM to start using resources in planning
Promotes good project management processes from the start by
getting key stakeholders used to reading formal documentation and
being expected to assess and sign off on it.
Will act as a primary tool for verifying scope and getting deliverables
accepted. If the charter clearly identifies the agreed project goal,
objective and expectations, including success criteria then Project
Closure should be straight forward.
Great initial communication tool for encapsulating the main project
expectations and allowing all team members, present and future, a
common understanding of what it will involve.
The next two topics will cover in more detail developing the success criteria and
documenting stakeholder expectations as well as the summary of the planned
approach and development of the roles and responsibilities matrix.

Principles of Project Management Module 2 Page 16 of 26

Before progressing to the next topic encourage to look at the Readings Tab. Meet
your new best friend: the project charter gives you a great run down on the different
contexts a project charter can be used effectively for.
For forum make a post about who develops and signs off on Project Charters in your

Useful Links
VIDEO: Preparing a Project Charter
WEB: Who Writes the Project
Charter? by Jim Owen Writing the Project Charter
by Joseph Phillips
Meet Your New Best Friend: The Project Charter by Cameron Watson
charter.html sample charter and template template for
a charter project charter templates

Principles of Project Management Module 2 Page 17 of 26

Topic 6: Identifying success criteria & measurable
Key to a successful Project Charter is identifying and documenting the projects
success criteria.
o The success criteria identify at the project start-up how the project will be
measured to be successful at the project finish.
o May also be called project approval requirements.
o This then means that correctly identifying and documenting success criteria
will have a direct relationship to whether the project outcome is accepted by
the customer/organisation it has been developed for.
o To be able to measure success criteria you need to have measurable project
o Use SMART assessment for assessing each of your objectives: are they
specific, measurable, achievable, realistic and time framed.
o Estimates already included in the Charter for time, budget, scope and quality
are common success criteria that can be easily measured.
o Success criteria can include project criteria as well as product criteria. E.g.
The project will be run using PMBoK processes = measurable project
success criteria
The end product will be x long by y high and z depth=measurable
product success criteria
Measurable outcomes
o In other words you cant afford the success criteria that will be later used to
sign off on and accept delivery of the project goal to come down to subjective
factors. There needs to be factors agreed on by the key stakeholders that can
be easily acknowledged and tested to see if they have been carried out.
o To go back to the Cake analogy, dont put a huge amount of effort into building
a cake that the measure of success for is everyone loved the cake. Come up
with measurable outcomes such as how large the cake should be to feed 60
people, the type of cake it should be (chocolate), the freshness and quality of
ingredients, the date and time it will be ready and that it is cooked according to
the recipes instructions. If these measurable outcomes are agreed to as being
the success criteria for the cake, then the one person in
the room that doesnt like chocolate cake however it is cooked, will not be able
to argue the cake is a failure, because even they would have to agree the
success criteria identified at the beginning of the project have been met - as
long as you can provide them with the evidence of them having been.
o At the Charter level success criteria will be high level.
o During planning, particularly in scope and quality management more specific
measures and success criteria will be documented.
o Trick is to encompass the overall criteria for success in the Charter allowing
for later further elaboration.
o When documenting success criteria it can help to ask the client and sponsor
(if different people) to define how they see it:
How will you know if the project is completed?

Principles of Project Management Module 2 Page 18 of 26

How would you define its success?
How will you measure how well the project has been done?
o Remember to make sure timeframes and costs are agreed.
o For success to be agreed it can be measured in two ways:
Discrete (did we achieve the success criteria yes or no)
Continuous (measured on a scale e.g. as a %)
Discrete success critieria: deliverable x is supplied on date
Continuous success criteria: achieve a 25% rise in customer
satisfaction ratings
o Both success criteria are clear and measurable so can help stakeholders
easily agree at the end of the project whether it was successful.
o Depending on project writing success criteria can be easier or harder.
If a product is the goal defining its specifications at the start will provide
measurable success criteria
If a service is the goal success criteria can be much harder to
o Key point is the more clearly you define the success criteria for the project in
the Charter (which must be agreed by the key stakeholders) the easier it will
be at project handover to measure the projects success.
o Before progressing to the next topic encourage to look at the Readings Tab.
The last link to a Charter on the Washington State University website provides
a good example of writing pretty subjective success factors into measurable
criteria, so well worth having a look at.

Useful Links
VIDEO: Explains how to define success
using measurable objectives.
WEB: Defining the hierarchy
of project objectives by Robert Youker. 21 tips for
successful project management starting with project success criteria Writing better requirements:
The key to a successful project, by Kimberly Roberts
long.html Sample template for Charter with project approval requirements.
define-success/ Discussion on defining success criteria successfully.
ojectCharter-v10.pdf Good example of writing subjective success factors in a
measurable way to act as success criteria.

Principles of Project Management Module 2 Page 19 of 26

Topic 7: Project assumptions, constraints and risks plus
roles & responsibilities
Different companies will include different topics covered in their Charter but even
right at the start of the project there are some assumptions, constraints and risks
you can identify. You may or may not choose to include them in the Charter
depending on their importance and whether you believe it will be beneficial to
include them this early on and they are currently apparent.
We will cover them in more detail in Module 3 when looking at planning the project
in more detail.
Keep at a high-level if included in the Charter. They will need further elaboration
during planning. May use to outline assumptions / constraints with managing the
project rather than identifying scope product assumptions and constraints.
Assumptions (what you believe to be true for the purposes of planning).
o To plan anything there are general things we consider to be true at the
extreme end we assume we will be alive, that the organisation will remain
operating, that the world wont end. These assumptions dont normally need
listing (though in the case of projects revolving around innovative and ground-
breaking inventions insurance is often taken out to insure against the risk of
key personnel staying healthy).
o The task of identifying high level assumptions is to list anything that can be
considered reasonable for the purposes of planning, but that if they dont hold
true will have a severe impact on the project.
o Assumptions the Project Manager is making regarding the managing of the
project will benefit from being identified in the Charter. An example may be:
Assume that support will be provided by the PMO throughout (which is being
considered for closure). This flags to key stakeholders that if the PMO is
closed there is a likelihood the project will require additional support from
somewhere else. Another assumption may be if there were legal ramifications
to the project goal, you assume access to legal advice will be provided on
sensitive issues. If this assumption turns out not to be true risk assessment is
going to need to assess the viability of continuing the project or perhaps
revising the scope to avoid legally sensitive areas.
Constraints, sometimes called Limitations (factors that may impede the project) may
also be included in the Charter.
o Already discussed common constraints of scope, schedule, budget, risks,
resources and quality but every project will have its own unique constraints.
An outline of what these are set at will already be in the Charter (e.g. ROM
budget, timeframe, scope, measurable outcomes and success criteria).
o At this stage (under the Constraints heading) it is the unique constraints you
would identify, but again if listed in the Charter this would be at a high level,
though more specific that simply saying money, time etc.
o May also benefit from being project management related.
o For instance, if there was limited access to the projects end customer this
would be worth denoting at the time of the Charter as good communication
with the customer has a direct bearing on ability to plan and understand their

Principles of Project Management Module 2 Page 20 of 26

Risks are important to consider early on as without identification it is not possible to
plan how you can avoid them or reduce their impact if they occur. As serious risks
can endanger the whole project flagging them this early helps inform the key
stakeholders you are asking to authorise the project to assess the potential risks in
the scale of running the project and identify if they can provide assistance.
o Both assumptions and constraints are directly linked to potential project risks.
For instance if you assume a particular resource will be available for the
project you are also identifying a potential project risk, if it turns out that the
resource is unavailable that will risk the projects timeline and scope. With our
high-level examples of assumptions and constraints above, a lack of access
to previous history of projects, particularly if the proposed project team has
limited experience, can really make managing the project harder. Having a
project customer that is at a remote location thereby constraining your ability
to communicate and get important information from also poses a direct risk to
the project. If the Customer is who will pay for the project deliverables then
despite their lack of contact with you, if you havent successfully determined
their needs and what they deem success criteria handover may become
o Identifying risks is obviously only one part of managing them. Having them
identified then requires you assess their probability, their potential impact on
the project and devise responses to mitigate or avoid them but well wait
until Mod 3 for going into detail.
Risks can also provide opportunities but this will be looked at further in Module 3.
For example though, if you were to identify at the Charter stage a possibility of the
project deliverable also fulfilling the objectives of another important client of the
business, you may then be able to extract agreement for additional support and
resources for the project.
Roles and Responsibilities
o At the stage of the Charter id basically anyone that will have authority over the
project running.
o Who is sponsoring, who the client is, who key managers that have authority
are and whom the Manager is.
o Provide a matrix or table of these people and what their responsibilities are to
the project, for example who signs off on project success criteria, who signs
off on project?
o Make sure you have contact details recorded.
o Make sure the Project Managers responsibilities and authority are clearly
o At least the Project Sponsor may sign, but preferably the Manager and
Customer, if that is a 3rd party to denote their approval of the Charter and for it
to proceed to the development phase.
o Good idea to allow these signatories to make additional comments if they wish
to sign on condition of a further factor or flag a potential concern.
o Roles and responsibilities, like assumptions, constraints and risks will all need
further elaboration as the project moves through development and more
information becomes available and more staff are brought into the project.
Further elaboration (explanation and expansion) for all of these areas will be needed
to better detail risks, constraints, assumptions and roles & responsibilities as the
project progresses. This is referred to as progressive elaboration.

Principles of Project Management Module 2 Page 21 of 26

In the next topic we will examine the second of the Initiation processes Identifying
o For readings - the Project Management Documents website contains many
useful templates that you may use and adapt if your workplace doesnt
already have these available

Useful Links
VIDEO: Develop Project Charter process Another take on the Charter process
covering need for further elaboration and importance of authority developing a charter in health
records area.
long.html More extensive sample charter. Who Writes the Project Charter? by
Jim Owen.
Meet Your New Best Friend: The Project Charter by Cameron Watson
charter.html sample charter and template template for
a charter. project charter templates

Principles of Project Management Module 2 Page 22 of 26

Topic 8: Identifying stakeholders
Second initialisation process after building the Charter.
Is part of Communications management
Most projects have many stakeholders when you remember that a stakeholder is
defined as anyone impacted by the running of the project and its outcome, or who
have a vested interest in the project outcome. Because stakeholders can be so
influential in the running and eventual assessment of project success it is vital that
the Project Manager form, early in the projects life, as clear as possible a matrix of
o Who the stakeholders are
o What their interest is
o What their involvement is
o How they may impact the project
o What their influence is
Inputs used are:
o The Project Charter
o Procurement documents such as contracts, suppliers
o Enterprise environmental factors such as Government regulations, standards,
company culture and structure
o Organisational process assets such as stakeholder register templates or
stakeholder information from previous projects.
Tools and Techniques are: expert judgement and stakeholder analysis as tools and
techniques to build the two identifying stakeholder outputs
Stakeholder Analysis: formal process for analysing each of the stakeholders you
have identified in your project.
o 1st identify all potential stakeholders and information about them
o 2nd classify their influence and their interest on a grid of low to high
o 3rd consider how you can influence them to either build their support or reduce
their negativity
Outputs are: Stakeholder register and Stakeholder management strategy.
Stakeholder Register will be useful throughout for whole team as includes contact
details and who you need to communicate with throughout.
The Stakeholder management strategy is also developed that may well contain
sensitive information as the purpose is to document how stakeholders may be
influenced to support the project. Consider censoring if going to place in a location
for the whole team to access.
Performing effective Stakeholder Identification makes it much easier to make sure
communication includes the right people and provides them with relevant
information. Importantly it helps the manager to effectively manage stakeholder
interests throughout the remainder of the project.
The next topic examines the project team and holding a kick-off meeting.
From the Readings Tab: read the Ezinearticle on why you should care about
identifying stakeholders for your projects success. The stakeholder register
templates are worth checking out too.

Principles of Project Management Module 2 Page 23 of 26

Useful Links
VIDEO: Identify who your stakeholders
are Identifying and understanding
stakeholders, including internal and external stakeholders
Bother?&id=2419733 Identify Stakeholders on Your Project - Why Bother?
and-template/ Sample Stakeholder Register and template. Overview of Stakeholder analysis. and
stakeholder-part-2/ Two part overview of defining stakeholders.
management-strategy.html example and template for Stakeholder Management

Principles of Project Management Module 2 Page 24 of 26

Topic 9: Appoint the team and kick off the project
From the initiation processes of identifying stakeholders and developing the Project
Charter you should have enough information to start bringing key team members
together. The Project Sponsor, Project Manager and client (if not the sponsor)
should already be identified and have signed off on the Charter.
Good project management practises emphasise how important is to have your
teams input into areas such as:
o the projects scope definition and work breakdown structure
o estimates of how long time will be needed to perform technical tasks
o how much funding will be required
o what technical skills and resources (materials / software) will be needed
Subject Matter Experts (SMEs) can often be Team Leaders and need to be
identified and brought into the core Project Team to assist the P.M. in planning.
The project team should be expected to grow after planning processes have been
completed because only then will you fully understand all the skills that will be
required and the time frames and costs that will be involved. Also, there is little point
in having the workers that will carry out the technical work of the project sitting
around doing nothing while the work of planning out the project which is a lot of
work is being done. In fact, as many project team members will be already
employed within your organisation and may be currently working on finishing off
other projects before they are required on yours, your team at this stage may just
mean you require their attendance at some key planning meetings.
However, having some sort of kick-off meeting at the end of the Concept stage will
clearly indicate to the team members you will need assistance in planning from that
the assessment of whether or not the project should be planned out has been made,
the key people who can build those plans have been identified and the meeting will
formally end this stage and signal the start of the Planning stage of the projects life
Of course you could hold this meeting to signify the start of the planning phase as
there is no substantial difference between holding it then but I have more time in
this Module than the Planning module, so Ill cover it now.
Project kick-off should help you:
o Introduce the Project Manager (and possibly sponsor) to the team
o Get the team to start building a team ethos
o Make sure everyone understands what the project is about
o Discuss the key points for the projects success identified from the business
case, SOW, Project Charter including thinking about assumptions, constraints
and risks to the project
o Outline how the team will communicate and
o Establish primary roles and responsibilities from the start.
You can hold more than one kick-off meeting one to kick-off execution processes
is usually recommended for the then fully assembled project team, where explaining
where to access the Project Plan and its key elements will have everyone starting
the execution stage with clear guidelines and an overview of the project for all.

Principles of Project Management Module 2 Page 25 of 26

Key point dont go into planning as a Project Manager without having a team to
help provide you with expert advice and technical guidance. At project execution
phase a lack of consultation with people that understand how the technical details of
the projects work should be carried out soon becomes obvious. Indicators of this
are work activities that are not properly resourced or feasible in the order
sequenced, or time and cost blowouts! The people allocated the actual work tasks of
creating the project will quickly lose enthusiasm if they feel they are being asked to
follow an ill-informed and poorly planned Project Management Plan.
Before progressing to the next topic encourage to look at the Readings Tab. Please
check out the readings for some useful information and templates for holding kick-off

Useful Links
VIDEO: How to kick-off a project
WEB: What and Why plus How to hold kick-
off meetings. Provides templates for kick-off meetings and some useful advice. designed for Web Project kick-offs.

Principles of Project Management Module 2 Page 26 of 26