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Project Roles

Project Manager

The Project Manager is the person responsible for ensuring that the Project Team completes the project on schedule, and within scope. The Project Manager develops the Project Plan with the project team and manages the team’s performance of project tasks. It is also the responsibility of the Project Manager to secure acceptance and approval of deliverables from the Project Sponsor and Stakeholders. The Project Manager is also responsible for communication, including status reporting, risk management, and escalation of issues that cannot be resolved in the team.

Project Sponsor

The Project Sponsor is a manager with demonstrable interest in the outcome of the project who is responsible for securing spending authority and resources for the project. The Project Sponsor acts as a vocal and visible champion, legitimizes the project’s goals and objectives, keeps abreast of major project activities, and is a decision-maker for the project. The Project Sponsor will participate in and/or lead project initiation; the development of the Project Charter. He or she will participate in project planning (high level) and the development of the Project Initiation Plan. The Project Sponsor provides support for the Project Manager; assists with major issues, problems, and policy conflicts; removes obstacles; is active in planning the scope; approves scope changes; signs off on major deliverables; and signs off on approvals to proceed to each succeeding project phase.

Project Team

The Project Team is the group responsible for planning and executing the project. It consists of a Project Manager and a variable number of Project Team members, who are brought in to deliver their tasks according to the project schedule. The members of this team are responsible for executing tasks and producing deliverables as outlined in the Project Plan and directed by the Project Manager, at whatever level of effort or participation has been defined for them. 

On larger projects, some Project Team members may serve as Team Leads, providing task and technical leadership, and sometimes maintaining a portion of the project plan.