Project Charter

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Project Charter - short version

The guiding document for a Lean Six Sigma project.

Project Charter - long version

Project charter or project definition is a statement of the scope, objectives and participants in a project. It provides a preliminary delineation of roles and responsibilities, outlines the project objectives, identifies the main stakeholders, and defines the authority of the project manager. It serves as a reference of authority for the future of the project. The terms of reference is usually part of the project charter.

The project charter is usually a short document that refers to more detailed documents such as a new offering request or a request for proposal. In Initiative for Policy Dialogue (IPD), this document is known as the project charter. In customer relationship management (CRM), it is known as the project definition report. Both IPD and CRM require this document as part of the project management process. The project charter establishes the authority assigned to the project manager, especially in a matrix management environment. It is considered industry best practice.

The purpose of the project charter is to document:

* Reasons for undertaking the project

* Objectives and constraints of the project

* Directions concerning the solution

* Identities of the main stakeholders

* In scope and out-of-scope items

* High level risk management plan

* Communication plan

* Target project benefits

* High level budget and spending authority

The three main uses of the project charter:

* To authorize the project - using a comparable format, projects can be ranked and authorized by Return on Investment.

* Serves as the primary sales document for the project - ranking stakeholders have a 1-2 page summary to distribute, present, and keep handy for fending off other project or operations runs at project resources.

* As a focus point throughout the project - for example: project as people walk in to team meetings and use in change control meetings to ensure tight scope management.


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