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What is a Business Process Transformation Project Charter?
Aside from being a mouthful to say (try saying it five times fast), a business process transforamtion project charter is a document that delineates the project, defines the scope, gives the history of the process transformation project, and estimates what resources will be needed to complete the project. A successful project charter will ensure that stakeholders and management a like will be able to identify key elements of your project at a glance.
A business process transformation project charter is a little different from a normal project charter. When you construct a business process transformation project, there are several elements going on at once, the key element is that you are not just constructing a project, but it's also a change management project, and often a quality improvement project. Thus, you will need to incorporate strategies from change management, quality improvement, and standard project management methodologies in formulating your project charter.
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Out With the Old - In With the New?
When writing your business process transformation project charter, the first item on the agenda when stakeholders glance at the charter is going to be: "Why are we transforming this business process?" Therefore, the first part of your charter will need to be an introduction for your stakeholders. In this section, you will want to create the urge in your reader for support of the change. To do this, outline the former business process. Then, demonstrate why that process was wrong: were there multiple defects, is there new technology, were there costly delays? By showing your audience what was wrong, and then demonstrating to the reader why it was wrong and why change was needed, your charter is more likely to be approved.
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Organize in Stages
When creating the charter, you're going to want to show how the transformation will occur. It is unlikely that the entire business process will be changed at ocne. Instead, your business transformation project will most likely occur in stages, allowing all team members to master one aspect of change before asking them to master the next aspect. When you organized your project charter in stages, your audience can determine what pace and what cost will govern the business transformation project.
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Risk Analysis and Assessment
In any project undertaking, a risk assessment and analysis will be a key component of forming the project charter. In a business process transformation project, this becomes more evident. What are the risks involved at each stage? How are you prepared to handle those risks? What sort of risk reserve will be needed?
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Consider Outsourcing Your Project
Finally, before you think I'm crazy for suggesting you outsource a business process transformation project as part of your project charter, consider that a consultant who is experienced in a variety of business process transformation projects can be more qualified and adept at helping you to craft your project charter - and can even be an asset in oversight of your project. If nothing else, before undertaking such a monumental task as overhauling a business process - and particularly if the transformation involves a critical business process - you should seek out the advice of someone who is highly qualified and experienced in managing transformation projects and managing change properly in companies. While such an individual may come with a hefty price tag, undertaking a change management project involving critical processes that goes horribly awry can cost much, much more.