Here is a project charter that a product compliance team developed for a software implementation project. In this scenario, the manufacturing plants and distribution centers in a chemical manufacturing company need a more reliable method for calculating hazardous chemical inventory levels for EPA reporting purposes (here is the Excel file for this charter).
Here are the discussion points that go with this charter –
- Business Need – while this project does not deliver a financial payback, it does reduce business exposure to government fines related to erroneous data. It’s always helpful in these situations to quantify the impact of cost avoidance measures. In this case, the charter specifies that fines related to data inaccuracies can exceed $1M. If the team wanted to be even more convincing, they could cite examples of recent penalties paid by other businesses in the U.S. for reporting errors.
- Internal Resources – In talking with the functional leaders in Product Compliance, the project manager learned that some of the underlying data in the MRP system is erroneous or missing. Thus, a substantial amount of time is being set aside to clean up the data (a full time compliance specialist and multiple resources from the product data management team).
- Project Risks – in this case, the biggest project risk is related to the completion date since the EPA reporting deadline is March 1. An experienced project manager will use this risk to create a sense of urgency around project approval, so the team does not miss the deadline.