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Project Charter Best Practices

A Project Charter lists the main goals of a project as well as a detailed plan for how to attain those goals. This detailed plan involves identifying the relevant stakeholders and determining the roles and responsibilities of each individual involved with the project. A Project Charter is beneficial because it can be created for an existing or future project, making it a useful project management tool. Project Charters are effective presentation tools for upper-level management, organizational clients, or potential investors and can be used as an accountability mechanism that ensures each member of the project team is doing their job and has a shared understanding of the project.

More about Project Charters

Description of Project Charter

A Project Charter is comprised of the following elements:

  1. The ultimate goal the project will serve to accomplish. More specifically, consider a major problem that the organization is facing or an opportunity that arises. Every other element of the project charter should be created with this goal in mind.
  2. The type of project that will help the organization attain that goal. More specifically, the scope of the project needs to be defined.
  3. The relevant individuals who will need to be or are already involved in the project. Additionally, define the roles that these individuals will play and for which pieces of the charter they will be held accountable. In this way, the project charter acts as a pseudo contract between the responsible individual and the other members of the project team.
  4. A timeline for the project, which should include a beginning and end date, benchmarks or sub-steps that need to be accomplished in order to reach the goal, as well as the date each step needs to be completed.
  5. The business case or purpose for the project. In order to create an effective business case, consider both the financial and service-oriented benefits that the project will bring to the organization as well as the client. Additionally, include in the business case the potential consequences that could incur if the project is not carried out, how the project aligns with the goals of the organization, and the ultimate reason for implementing the project.
  6. An explanation of how the project can improve employee performance on the job.
  7. A through list of resources that will need to be attained to successfully implement the project. These resources can be time, money, talent, etc.
  8. Risks that are associated with undertaking the project, as well as any individuals or organizational policies that might act as an obstacle to project execution. While identifying the risks, determine how your team will address these roadblocks as they arise.
  9. A clear plan for how the project will be communicated to other organizational members. While developing the communication plan, consider who is heading up each aspect of the project, what the purpose of the communication plan is, where individuals can locate additional information, when and how frequently information will be transmitted, to whom the communication will be directed, and how the information will be communicated to others.

Praxie's Online Project Charter Tools & Templates

Most Project Charters are created in documents, presentations, and spreadsheets. Interactive onlinesoftware applications like Praxie provide options to create and customize projects charters online and in collaboration with your team, and then export to files and PDFs. Get started with our Project Charter template. 

How to use it: 

  1. Complete the project charter using existing data available to you.  
  2. Keep this charter a living document as your project evolves over time.​ 
  3. Create an action plan to guide the process of developing your Project Charter, or to define the steps in building out your full project plan.​ 

Unlike most traditional Project Charter techniques, Praxie’s online Project Charter collaboration tools allow any team or organization to instantly begin working with our web templates and input forms. Our digital platform goes far beyond other software tools by including progress dashboards, data integration from existing documents or other SaaS software, elegant intuitive designs, and full access on any desktop or mobile device.