Managing a law firm is, in some ways, like managing any other business. You need to have a proper structure and plan on how to manage new (and existing) projects. One of the ways to achieve that is by making a project charter. A project charter is usually a simple document that lists the duties and responsibilities of each person or department involved and the overall objective, as well as an outline of the tasks required to reach that objective. In this article, we wanted to walk through how to make a project charter for your law firm.
Identify the Project’s Purpose
You can only know a business’s purpose through its intended end goal. Thus, the first step in how to make a project charter is to define the project’s goals. This includes answering questions like: why are we undertaking this project? What are the aims and objectives, and what are our expected outcomes? Coming up with answers to these basic questions will help you come up with the schedule and necessary budget allocation for your project.
Create an Organizational Structure
One of the key project charter details is an organizational structure. That’s because it makes it easier to give everyone responsibilities and allows the smooth running of the project. So when wondering how to make a project charter, you have to identify the responsibilities of each party involved and create a map that highlights everyone’s duties and expectations. In a law firm, these “parties” can include people both inside and outside the firm who have an interest or role in its operations.
Come Up With A Resource Plan and A Budget Estimate
Next, make a list of all the resources the firm needs to operate during the successful completion of your project. You want to make sure that you will have enough time and money to see it through to the proper end. Making a project charter the right way requires some breathing room in your budget to account for unforeseeable obstacles that may need smoothing over after the project is already off the ground. Creating a list of expected resources will make it easier to gauge the likelihood of success when it comes to deciding whether or not a project should move forward. In a project charter, you’ll want to indicate the names of the persons responsible for budget approval, e.g., chief financial officer (CFO) or Managing Partner.
Create and Review the Charter
The next step should be to develop the document incorporating all the above information in a simple and organized way. Review the charter with your project sponsors and get it approved.
So, if you are still wondering how to make a project charter, then odds are you could use some help. If you are looking for project management solutions for your law firm, contact Simplex BI today. We also offer other services, including Aderant implementation consulting, upgrade planning, project management, software evaluations, and many others. Reach out to learn more.