Project Management

Project Plan Template

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Format: Plan

The project plan is the means of defining and articulating how a project will be delivered.

The project plan builds upon the information that was defined in the project charter. It presents the results of the planning process. It defines what will be delivered by the project, and how that work will be accomplished. It identifies what will be necessary to successfully deliver on the project, and also identifies potential uncertainties and challenges.

The project plan is a key approval document once planning is complete that confirms the commitment of the organization to proceed with the project.

It is worthwhile to note that having invested in understanding what will truly be required, the project plan may not be approved and the project may be deferred or cancelled. Rather than being seen as a failure, that is actually an important outcome. Having invested in understanding what is possible and what the work will take, there may well be a decision that the project is too expensive, too risky or too uncertain of delivering the value that the organization wants.

In developing the project plan:

  • The project results of objective, outcome, value and success should be updated from what was known at the time of developing the project charter. Background of what has happened to get the project to here should also be defined.
  • Identify the communities that will be impacted by the project, and reflect what their interests, expectations and concerns are.
  • Define the scope of the project. A good statement clearly identifies what is included within the project commitments, and what is excluded. This should include clarity around the results that will be delivered, as well as how the project itself will be approached.
  • Identify the milestones and deliverables that support attainment of the project scope. Identify the date that each deliverable is planned to be completed
  • Define the budget for the project, identifying each major cost or expenditure category within the project, and the estimated cost to deliver.
  • Capture any assumptions that have been made to date. Reflect on commitments that have been made and what has been believed to be true in considering the project so far.
  • Identify the constraints that exist that place boundaries on the project and how it will be done.
  • Identify the risks and uncertainties facing the project that will need to be addressed as the project is planned. This should include an assessment of the likelihood of the risk and the impact if it occurs, and definition of a risk response.
  • Define the resources (internal and external) that will be needed to deliver the project, including clarification of the associated responsibilities and an estimate of the effort required to deliver.

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