Stakeholder Register in Project Management
Stakeholder management is one of the most important processes in any projects life cycle. It is a type of strategic management process that smart project managers follow to get support for their projects from others, both internal and external. Stakeholders can be an individual, an organization, a community, a group of people, an investor that can affect or be affected by the outcomes of a project or an organization. They may have positive or negative impacts and they may be either internal or external to the organization. A Stakeholder register is created to document who is impacted by the project and their influence and impact on the project. It contains information to deal with stakeholders who have different levels of interests and impacts on the project’s objectives. In this article, we will discuss the importance of stakeholder management and provide a stakeholder register template example to help you to manage your project’s stakeholders effectively.
Importance of Stakeholder Management in the Success of a Project
Stakeholders can be positive, negative, internal or external to the project or organization. Department heads, project coordinators, project team members, executive managers, board of directors and project sponsors are the example for internal stakeholders whose operations affect or be affected by the project.
External stakeholders are those who are external to the project’s organization. Vendors, suppliers, regulatory bodies, government, communities, and organizations are example for external stakeholders.
Stakeholder satisfaction is a key success criterion for any type of project. No matter if you’re managing an IT project or a pipeline construction project, you have to fulfill your stakeholder’s requirements. For successful project managers, it is a good practice to fully engage all positive stakeholders using effective communication tools and techniques based on a strategy.
Stakeholder management is a repetitious process which is performed through a life cycle of a project. Although there are many tools and techniques available for the development of a stakeholder strategy, stakeholder management is a unique process to the project. Therefore it should be tailored considering the characteristics of the project.
Identification of key project stakeholders comes just after the signage of project charter. After the stakeholder identification process, you will document the stakeholder information in a register. In other words, you will create the stakeholder register once the project charter is signed.
Stakeholder Register Template
The Stakeholder register is one of the most important project documents that help to classify, identify and assess the stakeholders of the project. The stakeholder register answers many questions regarding the stakeholders. Following are some of them;
- What are the names and contact details of the stakeholders?
- What are the expectations and requirements of the stakeholders?
- Who are the most critical stakeholders?
- What are the communication methods to deal with stakeholders?
- What is the impact level of stakeholders?
Basically, a stakeholder register is created in the early phases right after the project charter is signed. Stakeholder identification is the first step of creating a stakeholder register. Stakeholders can be identified by reviewing past and similar projects records, brainstorming with the project team, meeting with the project sponsor and exploring the vendors involved in the project
The PMBOK Guide recommends below tools for stakeholder classification;
1. Power/interest grid
2. Power/influence grid
3. Influence/impact grid
4. Salience model
Stakeholders are classified according to their power, influence, impact, and interest on a project. Also, they can be classified according to their urgency, and legitimacy.
Stakeholder Register Example
Typically, a stakeholder register includes below information;
– Role on Project
– Influence (Low/High)
– Impact (Low/High)
A stakeholder register includes columns that address specific questions. It can be customized considering the project requirements. Below figure shows an example for stakeholder register.
Note that the stakeholder register is a living document which should be kept updated during the projects life cycle. It provides information about all key project stakeholders and their attributes.
Stakeholder registers are important project management documents should be kept updated throughout the project life cycle. It is a living document which helps the project team to index all project stakeholders. As the project progresses, stakeholders and their influences on the project changes. New stakeholders come to existence and some stakeholders lose their attention on the project. Also their power and impact on the project changes. In addition to that, Stakeholder register must be a confidential document because it includes so much information about different people and organizations.
Stakeholder management plays a key role in the success of a project. Mismanagement of project stakeholders who have high power and interest may contribute to the project’s failure. Therefore project teams must perform timely and carefully stakeholder analysis, classification and prioritization considering the stakeholder’s abilities to affect the project.
It is a good practice to create the register as early as possible. There are various examples and templates available on the internet. You can download them, customize for your projects requirements, add columns if needed and use for your project to index the stakeholder information. The proposed template in this article, which shows how the stakeholder register could look like, is also useful for you.
In this article, we discuss the importance of stakeholder management and provide a stakeholder register template. Note that this is an important topic which should be known from the PMP Certification Exam point of view. You can add or share anything you want by using the comments box below.