How to Create a Team Charter in Project Management

The team charter in project management is a document that establishes the team values, communication guidelines, decision-making criteria and process, conflict resolution process, meeting guidelines, and team agreements. So, in this article, we’ll discuss what is a team charter, the purpose of a team charter, its importance, and the steps for creating a team charter.

What Is a Team Charter in Project Management?

A project team charter is a document that helps project managers outline why the team has been brought into the project. This document also outlines what the project team is being tasked to accomplish and the resources and constraints in which the team will work. Typically, this document is created in a group setting, which provides the team direction and boundaries in a transparent environment. So, the project team charter helps ensure everyone understands their part in the project. The following information is often included in the team charters.

  • Project team purpose –  Include information, such as why team members are working together, the problem they are trying to solve, and an acceptable outcome.
  • Duration and time commitment – This consists of the time the team might require its members to work.
  • Project scope – Define all project tasks that the team is responsible for managing.
  • Team members – This should include the names of the individuals on the team.
  • Ideal end results – Define the desired outcomes for the project.
  • Supporting results  – These are any essential resources that help the team achieve their goals.
  • Reporting plan – This includes information, such as communicating progress to the higher authority within the organization.
  • Deliverables – Include the team’s outputs, such as key performance indicators, documents, and auditing processes.
  • Links – These describe other departments and contribute to the team’s goals.

Furthermore, this document can be reviewed and updated when necessary.

Who Writes the Project Team Charter Document?

A team charter document is created by the project manager. It’s based on insights from everyone on the project team such as the stakeholders, team members, and sponsor. However, the participation of everyone on the team is crucial to complete the team charter. Furthermore, before completing this document, everyone must sign off on it.

Purpose of Project Team Charter

The project team charter document helps project managers define the overall objectives of the project team. Furthermore, this document provides a clear roadmap to the team throughout the project. When assembling a new team, this document will help you quickly bring them up to speed. Whether the project team is new or already established, this document helps to outline the project goals, assets, and obstacles. 

Why Is Important a Project Team Charter?

The project team charter helps project managers establish clear expectations about acceptable behavior by the team members. Early commitments to guidelines minimize misunderstanding and enhance productivity. Furthermore, discussion areas such as communication, decision-making, and meetings allow team members to identify values. The project team charter works best when the team develops it. All team members share responsibility for ensuring the rules documented in the team charter are followed. 

How to Create a Project Team Charter

How to Create a Project Team Charter

The following are 11 steps you can follow to create a project team charter for your team.

  1. Describe the Project Background

The first step is creating a team charter gathering the team together to describe the project background. During this meeting, all the team members must participate because it promotes collaboration, shows everyone you value their input, sees how they fit in the overall project, and informs them of the project’s details. Furthermore, this is an opportunity to motivate the team for the upcoming project.

  1. Establish the Team’s Purpose

The second step is establishing the team’s purpose. To determine team purpose, consider the problem the project team is trying to overcome and how they might achieve it.

  1. Document the Duration and Time Commitment

The third step is documenting the duration and time commitment of the team members. The duration is how long the project team might work together to complete the project tasks or activities. The time commitment is the percentage of the team member’s working hours that the team requires.

  1. Define the Project Team’s Roles and Responsibilities

The fourth step is defining the team’s roles and responsibilities for the project team. All team members need to know their roles and responsibilities to not get in each other’s way. So, list their skill sets and expertise and define who has authority over whom.

  1. Describes the Team Operations

The fifth step is outlining the operations for a team to work effectively. If a new team member enters the project, his or her pathway must be defined. Furthermore, all relationships, operating rules, etc are explored and clarified.

  1. Outline the Project Scope

The sixth step is outlining the project scope. During this process, you should define how the team members will participate in the project scope.

  1. Establish Performance Assessment Guidelines

The seventh step is establishing performance assessment guidelines. Each team member will be assessed on their performance and progress throughout the project. Furthermore, this needs to be explained upfront, such as how these metrics will be measured, who will be assessing them and when.

  1. Outline the Project Activities and Milestones
Outline the project activities and milestones

The eighth step is outlining project activities and milestones. With this information, the team has a better sense of work ahead of them.

  1. Set a Guide for Communication

The ninth step is setting a guide for communication. During this process, team members and managers should decide the method of communication, as well as how often the project team will meet and the frequency of their status reports.

  1. Include Links

The tenth step is including relevant links. During this section, outline how other teams might have a goal similar to yours or affect your output. Furthermore, you can attach any expert resources in the specific field.

  1. Add Signatures

The last step is adding signatures. Once the project team charter has been fully discussed and everyone on the team is on board, each team member should sign and date the document. Furthermore, this shows that they understand their role, responsibility, the scope of the project, and how they are involved.

Conclusion

Team charter in project management is essential for developing a team in a project. Describing the project background, establishing the team’s purpose, documenting the duration and time commitment, defining the project team’s roles and responsibilities, describing the team operations, outlining the project scope, establishing performance assessment guidelines, outlining the project activities and milestones, setting a guide for communication, including links and adding signature are the common step for creating a team charter.

Author

Kaushalya Rajarathna is a Higher National Diploma in Project Management who completed a Bachelor of Humanities and Social Science Degree and a Google Project Management Professional Certificate. Kaushalya is a Senior Content Writer at cloudkeypm.com. She mainly focuses on project management knowledge areas, project management tools and software, and general areas when writing articles.

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