The project stakeholder register

stakeholder register

What is the project stakeholder register, and what is it used for? We will see it in this article.

What is certainly undeniable is that no project can be successful if the stakeholders are not happy. Stakeholder satisfaction is essential for the successful completion of the project.

According to the PMBOK Guide, “An interested party may be a person, group, or organization that may be interested or have some interest in the project or the results of the project, directly or indirectly. ”

The stakeholders are all the parties involved in the project. Therefore, to manage project stakeholders, it is essential to have a register for this purpose.

What is a project stakeholder register?

project stakeholder register is a project-related document that includes all the information about the project’s stakeholders.

This document identifies the people, groups, and organizations that have an interest in the work, the project, and its results.

The following information can be found in a stakeholder register:

  • Names
  • Titles
  • Roles
  • Interests
  • Requirements
  • Expectations
  • Type of influence

It is essential to create the stakeholder register when the sponsor signs the project paper, and, at this stage, stakeholders are identified and analyzed and, consequently, a strategy can be created to manage them.

This document will help the project manager to complete the project smoothly.

The content of the project stakeholder register

You can categorize the information in the stakeholder register into three areas:

  • Stakeholder identification
  • Stakeholder evaluation
  • Stakeholder classification

If a stakeholder management strategy is then included, this will be the fourth category.

In a large organization, the stakeholder management strategy can be a separate document.

However, in a smaller organization, this information can be included directly in the stakeholder register.
the stakeholder register

Stakeholder identification

Generally speaking, the project’s stakeholders fall into three categories:

1. Organizational Stakeholders

These are the stakeholders within the organization and usually include senior management, technical management, and line managers, who are generally focused on a successful project and a successful product on the market. This type of stakeholder also includes the project team itself, which is interested in job security, fair wages, and career advancement.

2. Product and market-based stakeholders

This category contains stakeholders who have an “interest” in the product, though not in the organization. This category includes customers interested in purchasing a product that improves their lives at a fair price and also contains suppliers who provide tools, equipment, and services to carry out the project successfully. This category also contains governments that have a regulatory interest in the product and want to protect the public from the negative consequences of using the product. And finally, the general public is also included here, even if they are not stakeholders until they experience the outcome of the project.

3. Financing-based Stakeholders

The third group of stakeholders in the financial person or organization that supports the project. Investors, creditors, and banks that have financed the project are interested in achieving a return on investment within a reasonable time frame.

 

Each of these stakeholders should, therefore, be recorded, complete with contact details, job descriptions, position in the organizational structure, level of authority, and role in the project.

In short, effective stakeholder management requires the project manager to know who has the ability to influence the project so that quick decisions can be made in case of problems.

Stakeholder evaluation

In most cases, stakeholders have a definite “interest” in the project, e.g., a regulatory agency requiring an environmental assessment before issuing permits.

However, this is not always so immediate; often, stakeholders have minor requirements that only arise when they are not met.

Each stakeholder should be evaluated on what their requirements are.

In addition, each stakeholder has expectations about how the project will proceed, and its actions are governed by those expectations that may not be visible until they are met.

Furthermore, stakeholders have various levels of influence: from providing simple feedback to the complete shutdown of a project.

Each stakeholder has a different power over the project, and the project manager should assess where each stakeholder’s continuum is located.

Obviously, stakeholders who can shut down the project need to get proportionately more attention from the project manager.

Stakeholders also enter the project at different stages of the project life cycle. This is why the project stakeholder register must be updated regularly.

In short, in this part of the stakeholder register, stakeholders will be evaluated according to the following criteria:

  • Their requirements
  • Their communication needs
  • Their expectations
  • Their influence on the project
  • Their interest and power

This part, if duly filled in, will help the project manager to complete the project with a minimal setback.

Stakeholder classification

Stakeholders can be classified in different ways.

One of these is internal or external stakeholders, which can be used to determine contractual and procurement requirements.

Internal stakeholders are stakeholders that are within the leading organization, for example, the project team, technical managers, or managers.

External stakeholders are outside the parent organization, e.g., suppliers and regulatory agencies.

Another method of classifying stakeholders is called impact/influence and is used to determine the potential negative impacts of the project. In this classification:

  • The effect is the extent of the possible interruption of the project.
  • Influence is the ability to motivate others to stop the project.
  • Those with leverage must be kept satisfied.
  • Those with impact must be kept informed.
  • Those that have both impact and influence need to be managed very carefully.

Another classification is as follows and is an excellent way to distinguish between the types of communication required by each stakeholder.

In this classification model, each stakeholder is classified into one of the following four types of classification:

  • “Upward” is related to the core organization: executives, investors, and sponsors of the project. These stakeholders hold commercial and financial interests in the project.
  • “Downward” are the stakeholders below the project hierarchy: suppliers, contractors, service providers, and so on. The project team itself also counts as a descendant.
  • “Outwardly” are stakeholders who have an “interest” in the project, such as government regulators, adjacent landowners, end-users, customers, and even the general public.
  • “Laterally” are stakeholders who are in competition with the project due to scarce resources, such as other project managers and organizational departments.

Stakeholder analysis and management strategy

After completing the stakeholder classification, the stakeholder management strategy is developed.

This will help the project manager to manage them according to their needs, influence, and interest in the project.

A more influential stakeholder will require a different strategy than another stakeholder with a lower level of influence.

The stakeholder register may contain confidential information, and not everyone may be allowed access to this document. Therefore, it is crucial to keep this document in a safe place.

However, many organizations do not restrict access to the stakeholder register, in which case a separate stakeholder strategy document can be created and kept in a safe place.

As the project progresses, new stakeholders will be identified, and their attributes may also change.

This is why it is crucial to keep the register up-to-date throughout the life cycle of the project.

Stakeholder management, therefore, plays a vital role in the success of a project.

Inadequate management of project stakeholders, especially those with high power and interest, can even lead to project failure.

Therefore, project teams and the project manager must perform timely and accurate stakeholder analysis, ranking, and prioritization, considering the ability of stakeholders to influence the project.

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