Effective Project Management in any organization yields efficient and enhanced results. Apart from the fundamentals of project management, principles, skills, and best practices, it is extremely important to understand “what is a project team”, “what are the various project team roles”, “How does the project team composition work in any organization”, etc.
What is a Project Team?
The project team includes the project manager and the group of individuals who work together on a project to achieve its objectives. It consists of the project manager, project management staff, and other members who are maybe not directly involved with management but carry out the work related to the project. This team consists of people from different teams with precise subject matter knowledge or with the required skill set to carry out the work of the project. The structure and characteristics of a project team usually vary, but the project manager’s role as the leader of the team remains constant.
However, the amount and nature of authority the project manager has over the members can differ.
Project Team Roles
The project manager plays the chief part in the project and is responsible for its success and quality. His job is to make sure that the project proceeds and completes within the specified time frame and the ascertained budget, and accomplishing its goals at the same time. Project managers ensure that resources are sufficient for the project and maintain relationships with contributors and stakeholders.
A project manager is entrusted with various duties and responsibilities like:
- Developing a project plan
- Managing deliverables according to the decided plan
- Leading and managing the team
- Deciding the methodology used in the project
- Establishing a project schedule and determining each phase
- Assigning tasks to team members
- Providing regular updates to upper management
Project Team Member
Project team members are mainly the people who work on various phases of the project. They could be in-house staff or external consultants and maybe working on a full-time or part-time basis. Their roles can differ according to each project.
The responsibilities of the members can be summed up as the following:
- Contribute to overall project objectives
- Complete individual deliverables
- Provide expertise
- Work with users to determine and meet business needs
- Document the process
The project sponsor is the driver and in-house champion of the project. He has a vested interest in the successful outcome of the project. They are typically members of senior management – those with a stake in the project’s outcome. Project sponsors work closely with the project manager. They legitimize the project’s objectives and participate in high-level project planning. Also, they often help resolve conflicts and remove obstacles that occur throughout the project, and they sign off on approvals needed to advance each phase.
Project sponsor duties:
- Make key business decisions for the project
- Approve the project budget
- Ensure availability of resources
- Communicate the project’s goals throughout the organization
The Business Analyst recognizes the requirements of the organization and suggests solutions to the problems. In a project team, they make sure that the current project’s objectives can solve existing problems and add value to the organization. They can also help make the most of project deliverables.
A Business Analyst is entrusted with:
- Helping in defining the project
- Collecting requirements from business units or users
- Documenting technical and business requirements
- Ensuring that project deliverables meet the requirements
- Testing solutions to validate objectives
Composition of Project Teams
The project team’s compositions may differ based on the organization’s culture, scope, and location.
Some of the examples of the team compositions are given below:
This is the simplest structure for a project manager. In this composition, all or most of the members are appointed to work full-time on the project. The project team has to report directly to the project manager, and the lines of authority are well-defined so team members can concentrate on the project’s objectives. Dedicated project teams are usually seen in organizations, where most of the resources of the organization are involved in project work, and project managers have independence and power.
Some projects are assigned to a team as additional temporary work, with the rest of the organization’s members carrying out their regular functions. The functional managers have control over the team members and the resources assigned to the project. On the other hand, the project manager continues with other management duties. Also, Part-time team members can be assigned to more than one project at one time. Part-time project teams are mostly seen within functional organizations. Matrix organizations use both dedicated and part-time project teams.
Some compositions vary based on organizational structure, like a partnership-based project where one lead organization appoints a project manager to coordinate the efforts of the partners. Some vary based on the geographic location of their members, like virtual teams. Virtual teams fulfill the needs for projects where resources are situated onsite or offsite or both, depending on the activities.
The success of a project cannot be accredited to a single person. It is the contribution of every member of the team and people associated from outside. It is imperative to keep an account of how many people are related to your project and which role should be assigned to each one of them. A proper training and thorough knowledge of the subject can guide you with the same.
Project Management without a good and efficient project team is as good as a boat without oars. It would not matter which methodology you use for your project, the project team is the one that helps any project reach any conclusion. Check out the PMP certification training program and lead your way in project management with glory.