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Project Initiation with Project Management Templates

January 15 2007

Project Initiation with Project Management Templates

Within this article, we’ll help you to properly scope your projects, by describing:

How to Initiate Projects Successfully with Project Management Templates

Did you know that a large percentage of projects are cancelled before they even reach the detailed planning phase? The most common reason is that they have not been properly defined and scoped, and as a result, they lack the sponsorship needed to ensure their success. If they do manage to secure sponsorship, then Project Managers often find it difficult to control changes to the project scope, as they do not have a clearly defined scope statement to measure against.

For these reasons, it’s critical that you initiate your projects as quickly and efficiently as possible, by taking these 6 steps using our project management templates. A description of each step follows:

Step 1: Develop a Business Case

The first step taken when initiating a new project, is the creation of a comprehensive Business Case. A project management templates Business Case describes the business problem / opportunity to be addressed by the project and the alternative solutions available. The potential costs and benefits associated with each alternative solution are also defined.

The Business Case becomes the foundation for the project as it fully documents the reasons for creating the project and the key benefits to be delivered. Once produced, the Business Case should be formally endorsed by the Project Sponsor, before funding is allocated to the project. More info…

Step 2: Undertake a Feasibility Study

A Feasibility Study is completed to identify the likelihood of the alternative solutions actually delivering the benefits stated in the Business Case. Based on the results of the Feasibility Study and the Benefits and Costs portrayed in the Business Case, a preferred solution is identified and once again, is approved by the Project Sponsor.

If you can complete a comprehensive Feasibility Study using these project management templates, then you will greatly improve your chances of delivering your project successfully. More info…

Step 3: Establish the Terms of Reference

Once the problem and solution have been identified, a new project is then defined to deliver the solution. The “Terms of Reference” (ie Project Charter) are documented, which essentially describe what the project sets out to achieve and the boundaries within which it must achieve it.

The project vision, objectives, scope, deliverables, project organization and an implementation plan are all clearly stated in the Terms of Reference document. The Terms of Reference may be otherwise known as a “Project Charter” or “Project Definition Report”. More info…

Step 4: Appoint the Project Team

Now that the project is defined, it is time to appoint the team. The Project Board is established and the Project Manager is recruited to take on responsibility for the project. The Project Manager recruits the Team Leaders and they in turn help recruit project staff. Every team member is assigned a detailed Job Description, defining their role and responsibilities within the project. More info…

Step 5: Set up a Project Office

The Project Office environment is then established, as the physical place of residence for the team for the duration of the project. This environment will provide the premises, equipment, materials, tools and processes required to enable the members of the project team to perform their roles successfully. A checklist is used to ensure that the Project Office has been set up correctly and will continue to support the Project as needed. More info…

Step 6: Perform Phase Review

Once the project has been defined and the team have been appointed, you’re ready to perform a project phase review. A Phase Review is completed to ensure that all of the required Initiation activities have been undertaken and to provide formal approval to proceed to the next phase: Project Planning. More info…

And there you have it – 6 steps to initiating projects successfully. If you would like to use project management templates to complete each of these activities quickly and efficiently, then read about the Project Initiation Kit. This kit includes all of the templates, forms and processes required to perform the above steps faster than ever before.