If there is a document that should never be ignored before starting a project, it would be a project charter. Why? Because a project charter serves as a definition of how the success of a project will be measured, and it can also be a crucial element in planning the project and communicating its benefits and objectives to stakeholders.
A project charter is a formal document that describes your project in its entirety. It’s a summary of all the roles, goals, and scope of your project, and it provides stakeholders and project members an overview of the plan that will be executed.
When done well, a project charter will help you achieve objectives by helping you define the process, roles, and responsibilities of those involved. In project management, a charter is a crucial tool because it can provide guidance during the entire project lifecycle.
When creating a project charter, you should focus on three main points:
There are many benefits to working with project charters when managing projects, but some of the most common ones are:
The primary goal of a charter is to authorize the project manager to start the approved project, this is why it’s important to reference, in its content, how the project is aligned to the company’s strategies. In short, you’ll be creating a project charter because:
A project charter should be short and straightforward. You’ll want to keep it simple but it’s important that you’re also able to communicate the essence of the project in a few words. Managing projects also mean managing lots of information, but a project charter will be most successful when it’s presented as a high-level overview of your project.
A project charter typically documents:
Here’s what an effective project charter should look like and include:
Project description and summary
SMART objectives, including deliverables
Context and reason for existing
Project scope and boundaries
Main stakeholders and project members
Customers and end-users
Constraints and risks
Budget and costs
Before you start any project, you should first take the time to write a project charter. It’s a fundamental tool that can define the outcome of your project. And while a business case and a budget plan will need to be more detailed, a project chart will serve as a roadmap and a guide for your project. For you and for everyone involved.
But wouldn’t it be easier if you could create and document your project charter online? Turning a charter into a plan requires a tool that is flexible enough to adjust to the amount of information and the many tasks involved. Instagantt, a project management software, helps you create and manage projects online. With this software, you’ll be able to create professional-looking Gantt charts in only minutes. Take a look: