Initiation Phase in Project Management Life-Cycle

A project is made up of discrete activities which have specific definition and guidelines. To execute these activities successfully, they are divided into different phases which follows a definite sequence known as project life cycle. This life cycle for the project includes five phases-

  • Initiation Phase
  • Planning Phase
  • Execution Phase
  • Monitoring and Controlling phase
  • Closing Phase

We will first look into Initiation Phase

Initiation Phase

Initiation phase defines those processes that are required to start a new project. The purpose of the project initiation phase is to determine what the project should accomplish.

This phase mainly composed of two main activities

  • Develop a Project Charter and
  • Identify Stakeholders

All the information related to the project are entered in the Project Charter and Stakeholder Register. When the project charter is approved, the project becomes officially authorized.

Project Charter

The Project Charter defines the project's main elements

  • Project goals
  • Project constraints and Problem statements
  • Assign project manager
  • Stakeholder list
  • High-level schedule and budget
  • Milestones
  • Approvals

This document allows a project manager to utilize organizational resources for the sake of the project. To create a project charter, the inputs required will be enterprise environment factor, business case, agreements, a project statement of work and organizational process assets.

Identifying Stakeholders

A stakeholder can influence the success and failure of the project. To note down the information about the stakeholder, a Stakeholder Register is used.

The stakeholder register will have information like

  • Type of stakeholder
  • Expectation of stakeholder
  • Role in Project ( Business Analyst, Tech architect, Client PM)
  • Designation (Director, Business Lead, etc.)
  • Type Communication ( Weekly/Monthly)
  • Influence on the project ( Partial/Supportive/Influensive)

The other activities involved in initiating process group are:

  • Assigning the project manager
  • Determining the stakeholder needs, expectations and high-level requirements
  • Define the project success criteria
  • Identify particular budget for particular stage
  • Make sure that the project is aligned with the organizations strategic goal

The stakeholder register and project charter are used as inputs to the other process groups such as planning process group.

Summary:

Initiation phase defines those processes that are required to start a new project. It defines what project should accomplish in due course of time.

The initiation phase mainly composed of two main activities

  • Develop a Project Charter
  • Identify Stakeholders

The stakeholder register and project charter are also useful in other process groups of project management like planning process.