Ditch Your Business Analytics Project Charter!


Ditch your Project Charter!I have always strongly recommended that all business analytics clients complete a Project Charter. The Project Charter is a working document that defines the goals of a project, the resources, the risks and the timeline written to ensure all team members were on the same page and the definition of success was agreed upon.  As a business analytics coach at Lodestar Solutions, I found clients reluctant to do this step in the process.  Maybe they thought it was too much work and maybe they feared putting their thoughts in writing for fear of being wrong or held accountable.  I reflected on the situation for a long time and then I realized it was time to scrap the project charter.

At Lodestar Solution, we focus on constant improvement and for 2016 we are telling you to forget creating the formal project charter! We recommend a new and exciting method for defining success for the project.  This method will:

  1. ensure that all team members are actively engaged in the definition of success for your business intelligence or analytics project
  2. will allow for changes midstream without huge cost overruns
  3. increase team member job satisfaction
  4. save a lot of time

Are you ready to get started? Here’s how it works:

Step one: Project Evaluation Workshop – This is an interactive workshop where participants brainstorm on what they need in a solution and write their ideas on sticky notes. As a group, they then categorize these needs and prioritize them.  Check out this Post-it’s blog for ideas:


Step two:  Document results on Scrum Board or results template – We recommend the items be converted into user stories and added to an Agile or Scrum project board.   If you are unfamiliar with Scrum Management tools check this out: http://www.softwareadvice.com/resources/project-management-scrum-tools/

Step three: Estimate a ROI for this phase of the project.  If this is a new project and you need to get funding and resources, we recommend developing the benefits of having this solution.   Focus on how this could save or make the company money.  During one of our recent 2-day workshops, one client realized by implementing a dashboard with timely information they could save the company $1.2M a year.  Now that’s a nice ROI.

If you want to ditch the project charter and you like these ideas, please reach out to us at 813-254-2040 or at Coaching@LodestarSolutions.com.

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