The project charter provides a consolidated and summary-level overview of the project. It allows all stakeholders to agree on and document project scope, objectives, timeframe approach, and deliverables. The project charter is one of the first steps in the project planning process following completion of the project initiation phase. The project charter should not be confused with the investment business case (IBC). The IBC should already be completed, and the investment decision to proceed with a project should be taken before a project charter.
A project charter is also not a project plan. A project plan is more detailed and comes later in the project cycle. The project plan is a comprehensive plan that pulls together all the outputs of project planning activities, which include project scope, project activities, activity sequence, activity durations, resources required for activities, project schedule, cost estimation, spending plan, and a quality plan.
The project charter is a single reference about the project regarding planning and initiation. Of course, the project charter could be updated later in the project cycle if all parties agree to new updates. However, its primary purpose is project authorization and kickoff. It provides information about scope, objectives, deliverables, risks, and other issues. It lays the foundation for how the project will be structured and managed in terms of change control, oversight risk, and issue resolution.
The project charter provides a consolidated and summary-level overview of the project. It allows all stakeholders to agree on and document project scope, objectives, approach timeframe, and deliverables. Collaboration and consensus by all key project participants is the goal. It also captures the agreed-upon communications plan, control mechanisms, funding, and responsibilities of team members. It is the fundamental communications tool within the project environment. The project charter is a...