Developing a Project Charter for Software Procurement Projects

Developing a Project Charter for Municipal Software Projects

by Jeffrey Morgan

The essential first step in undertaking any type of software project (or any other project!) is to draft a Project Charter. The document makes the business case for the project, defines high level goals and objectives and authorizes the project going forward. The Project Charter should be officially adopted by whatever process and governing body your organization uses. You can call the document whatever you wish, but the bottom line is that you must at least address the 6 W’s:

  1. Who
  2. What
  3. When
  4. Where
  5. Why
  6. How Much

Who will be affected by the project? Who will be required to commit resources to the project? What do you hope to achieve? When will the project begin and how long will it take? Which departments, buildings and locations will be affected? Why have you proposed this project? Do you have to sell this project to your staff as well as your governing board?

Even if you are the head of a top-down dictatorial management model, it makes sense to sell your staff on the benefits of the project and create some excitement and anticipation about the coming improvements to the way your organization conducts business. Staff members who feel they have been slighted or not consulted can and will wreak havoc and may sabotage the implementation of the project, so get everyone on board from the beginning.



If you would like to talk about your municipal software project, or anything else, e-mail me at


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