The project organization

Download the tool and describe the project organization in detail. The organization contains all your resources, it is the project engine that must ensure professional quality, decision-making competence and involvement of the “customers”. Projects are temporary and many are not familiar with the different roles, therefore it is important that the organization can be clearly described. The tool gives you 6 alternative templates to describe the project organization.

Full description

Purpose and yield

The project organization must ensure professional quality, decision-making competence and involvement of the “customers”. Projects are temporary and many are not familiar with the different roles, therefore it is important that the organization is described in detail. The tool ensures that:

  • The project organization is described in detail
  • The organization has a relevant division of labor and roles
  • The three roles are kept separate: Project owner is decisive and granting, the project team is executing and the reference groups are advisory
  • An appropriate structure of the project in order to connect the assignment and the organization

When is the project organized?

  • The overall structure must be established relatively quickly in a collaboration between project owner and project manager.
  • As a project manager you need to be quick off the mark in order to secure the right key resources. Once someone in the management has defined structure or people, it is very difficult to change.
  • The division into workstreams can wait until the hierarchy of objectives or impact case is in place.
  • The organization must be able to be adjusted along the way, as there is a need for different competencies and volume throughout the project.

Pitfalls and restrictions

  • The steering group must be powerful and small. Avoid large steering groups, they are ineffective.
  • Leaders who cannot deliver resources or decisions should not be in the steering committee. They should be placed in a reference group.
  • Assess the composition of the reference group or groups. Should a group consist of people with homogeneous interests, or must different target groups be mixed?
  • Reference groups do not need to be a group, it may be individuals who advise the project manager.
  • Involve the reference groups as early as possible and create acceptance of objectives and plan.
  • Stakeholders decide undisputed whether the project is successful, so keep close contact with them so that they are well-informed.
  • Fight to get the best employees for the project, without them it is already uphill.
  • Find professionally competent participants with leadership skills for the role as team leaders in the working groups.
  • The structure of the project must be based on the main deliverables, so that professional and financial responsibility is clearly defined.

Who participates?

  • It is the project owner and steering group that designates the project manager.
  • The overall organization is carried out in collaboration between project manager and project owner.
  • As a project manager, you must seek influence on which key persons must be in the reference groups and the project team.
  • The project’s internal organization is carried out by the project manager
  • The organization in workstreams and working groups is carried out by the project manager in collaboration with any team leaders or sub-project managers.

Project organization and roles

In the PowerPoint tool the principles of the overall project structure and the roles of the organization are described.

Project owner

Owns the assignment and is responsible for the project’s business case, including the impact and resource consumption.

Project owner is often chairman of the steering committee. If there is no steering committee, the project owner has the same responsibility and roles as the overall steering group would have.

Project Manager

The project manager is the project director and is responsible for the overall design of the project, the organization, the planning and the day-to-day management of the employees in the project.

The project manager is responsible for all management tasks in relation to the project participants, towards the stakeholders and up to project owner and steering group.

Project participants

The project participants perform the work and must ensure professional quality and delivery on time. Since the participants are often the only ones who know the professional content, they are also responsible for planning their own work.

The steering committee

Owns the assignment and is responsible for the project’s business case. This means that the steering committee must be able to deliver the resources needed for the project. They are responsible for the overall impact, approve the project’s results and must be able to make the necessary decisions.

The steering committee must pave the way for the project in the organization.

According to PRINCE2, the steering committee must perform three roles: the buyer, the owner of the resources and the owner of the subsequent operation.

The reference group or groups

The reference group has no decision-making competence as the steering group. The group’s members must be consulted and provide input to ensure the quality and acceptance. The group’s members can also be used as ambassadors in the surroundings.

The workstreams and work teams

The team members perform the work and must ensure professional quality and delivery on time in the area of intervention. As the participants are often the only ones who know the professional content, they also have the responsibility of planning their own work and ensuring that deliverables to other workstreams are as agreed.

6 alternative templates for inspiration

Then 6 alternative templates are described for inspiration, all of which can document project organization.

Template 1: A simple table to describe a project organization with project owner, steering committee, project manager and central project team, reference groups and workstreams. The template is prepared as a table and is available both in PowerPoint and a Word edition.

Template 2: Corresponds to template 1 but is expanded to describe up to 3 reference groups and 6 workstreams. The template is prepared as a table and is available both in PowerPoint and a Word edition.

Template 3: Describes a project organization with project owner, steering committee, project manager and central project team, up to 4 reference groups and 5 workstreams. The template is prepared as a table and is available both in PowerPoint and a Word edition.

Template 4: Used to describe a project organization with project owner, steering committee, project manager and central project team, up to 3 reference groups and 4 workstreams. The template is drawn in PowerPoint and the individual groups can be deleted or copied as needed

Template 5: Describes a project organization with a project owner without a steering committee. In addition, the project consists of project manager, central project team, up to 4 reference groups and 4 workstreams. The template is made in PowerPoint and groups can be deleted or copied as needed

Template 6: Used to describe a project organization with project owner, steering committee, project manager and central project team, up to 4 reference groups and 4 workstreams. The template is drawn in PowerPoint and the individual groups can be deleted or copied as needed

quote

"Management by objective works - if you know the objectives. Ninety percent of the time you don't."

- Peter Drucker

Who is airborn leadership?

As a project manager I have always lacked a platform where I could click in and get inspiration, relevant knowledge and concrete tools, regardless of time and place. A wireless toolbox where knowledge came to me through the air. A help that could give me a much needed boost in my current challenge.

You have never been more important as a project manager. Projects are the engine in developing a better business, new products, improvements in society and the global transformation to sustainable energy and production. Your leadership is therefore crucial. As a leader and project manager, you are the tool that creates the results.

I hope airborn leadership can be your gateway to knowledge within project management, no matter what journey you are on.

John Ryding Olsson Founder & author
John Ryding Olsson Founder & author John Ryding Olsson

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