A communications plan works alongside other parts of the project plan to document how and to whom status information about risks, project processes, and other matters are communicated.
To be effective, the communications plan will define the stakeholders of a project, what their needs are, and how to best communicate different project metrics to them. Without a communications plan, managers cannot be sure that necessary information travels to stakeholders at appropriate times.
A communications plan is an essential component of the planning process, so managers should make it an important priority. The parts of a communications plan mentioned here are essential to the effort to promote information sharing across the team.
As noted by Carl Pritchard, the communications plan should be shared with all stakeholders, but managers should be cautious to limit the content shared with external stakeholders to that which is essential to their responsibilities to avoid compromise of trade secrets and/or data protected by privacy and ethics rules.
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