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 Week 1 – Assignment: Identify the Project Topic—The Project Charter


This week you will design a project charter.

Each project needs a project charter—a statement of the nature and justification of the project. As part of the project charter, the project scope must be defined, estimated project duration is given, the initial sequence of activities outlined, and an allocated budget presented in its initial statement and developed in more detail in the project plan (the Signature Assignment of this course). The project manager is designated. The Project Management Docs portal (certified by the Project Management Institute), provides templates for a project charter.

As part of the project charter, which can be a template or a document, you will identify the scenario or operation chain where you will develop a project plan for an IT development, process, and/or service improvement. Because this is the first part of your Signature Assignment, you must be detailed in your scenario selection.

When selecting your project topic, make sure it is not too small or too complex (remember time constraints—this course lasts eight weeks), and avoid working in an area where you have little or no knowledge. The project should not identify a specific organization or sensitive data; therefore, if you are working with a known scenario, all names, locations, and operations indicators must be protected. Sample criteria to consider are that the project has at least 20 people, has a budget of $4-5 million, and lasts at least 15 months.

Some sample topic selections are:

  1. Client Technology Tracking System
  2. Employee Self-Service Systems (ESS) Implementation
  3. Health Patient Electronic Record (HER) System Implementation
  4. Hybrid/Private Cloud Implementation for an Enterprise
  5. Network Center Relocation with Physical/Wireless Connections, Virtualization, and Cloud Solutions
  6. Small Network for a Physician’s Office (EHR)
  7. Network Security Policy Implementation for a University Campus
  8. Home Wireless Network Design
  9. Campus Secure Virtual Lab

As you design your project charter, you can create your own format similar to the templates or outline shown in Figure 1.3 and Figure 1.4 in this week’s introduction.  The project charter should describe the project and its initial stakeholders in detail and must include:

  • Executive Summary or Operating Scenario at a Glance—Describe the nature of service or operations, the company or institution, and its overall composition and structure (company profile).
  • Statement of the problem, need opportunity, or request for an IT development. In this section, references regarding the importance of clearly identifying the problem, request or need from our users or customers with references must be included.
  • Justification for the project.  In this section, the importance of clearly justifying the need for this project must also be explained in detail with supporting scholarly references.

A sample outline for the design of a project charter is as follows:

  1. General Information
    1. Project Title
    2. Description of the Project
    3. Prepared by (project sponsor, project manager, functional manager)
    4. Date
  2. Project Objective – Initial Scope
  3. Assumptions and Limitations
  4. General Project Milestones (Description of major areas that will cover the project). These milestones will be refined and described in more detail once the schedule is developed.
  5. Initial Roles and Responsibilities – Can be in table format
    1. Sponsor
    2. Project Manager
    3. Stakeholders
    4. Team Members
    5. Subject Matter Experts (SMEs)
  6. Project Risks (Initial Assessment) or Observations
  7. Approvals

Length: 4-6 pages not including the cover page and reference pages. This document does not follow the APA format because it can be a template or table structure and layout. However, citations must adhere to APA standards.

References: Minimum of 5 scholarly resources.

Your project charter should demonstrate thoughtful consideration of the ideas and concepts that are presented in the course and provide new thoughts and insights relating directly to this topic. Your response should reflect graduate-level writing and APA standards. 

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