The initiating phase of the project life cycle starts with recognizing a need, problem, or opportunity. Projects are identified in various ways: during an organization's strategic planning, as part of normal business operations, in response to unexpected events, or as a result of a group or individual deciding to organize a project. Project Charters and Proposals Once a project is selected, it is formally authorized using a document referred to as the project charter or proposal. These two documents are often slightly different. A project charter is often the term used on internal corporate projects, while a proposal is often more appropriate for external projects or services that are offered by outside firms or vendors. Both documents also summarize the key conditions and parameters for the project and establish the baseline plan for conducting it. The sponsor or client must approve the document in order for the project to proceed and receive funding. Course Project Background The goal of the course is for you to apply the fundamental principles of the project management process to being your own project manager on a small-scale project. As you progress through the assessments in the course, you will apply the five project management process groups and the Project Management Institute's (PMI) areas of knowledge to your personal project. Select and start to formulate a project that you will use to complete the assessments in this course. Project Topic: Build or renovate a house. Preparation Imagine that you are the manager for the project you have selected. For this assessment concentrate on the initiation process group by writing the project charter or proposal for a sponsor or client. As you prepare to complete this assessment, you may want to think about other related issues to deepen your understanding or broaden your viewpoint. You are encouraged to consider the questions below and discuss them with a fellow learner, a work associate, an interested friend, or a member of your professional community. Note that these questions are for your own development and exploration and do not need to be completed or submitted as part of your assessment. Why are you doing the project? For whom are you doing the project? What exactly are you going to do within the project? Where will the project be completed? Where will it be implemented? How are you going to do it? What are the objectives and goals of the project? Directions Create a proposal or charter for your project that effectively captures the essence of the project. It should enable a strong foundation for the project's management and timely completion within budget and describe the following items: Customer need. Assumptions. Project scope. Deliverables. Resources. Schedule (due date or major milestones only). Price (general terms or budget only). Risk. Title your chosen document as either a "charter" for internally sponsored corporate projects or as a "proposal" for projects that are external to a business, for example, responses to RFPs. Each may have slightly different components. For example, a charter might include a business case, where none would be required with a project. Another example might be that a charter would not include a profit margin in the budget, while a proposal certainly would. For more information read the Internet article Project Proposal vs Project Charter, found in the Resources. Additional Requirements Length: The focus of the proposal should be on quality of the content—clear, concise and convincing—rather than quantity or number of pages. The project proposal can range from 4 to 8 pages double-spaced pages. Font: 12 point Times New Roman. References: Use proper current APA style and formatting when citing and referencing your sources. Refer to the Capella Online Writing Center's APA Style and Format for more information.