Setting up the Project Team

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As defined by the Project Management Institute (PMI) in its Guide to the Project Management Body of Knowledge, third edition, a project team consists of all the project members, including the project management team, the project manager, and for some projects, the project sponsor. The project team members are responsible for performing project work as part of their regularly assigned duties and report directly or indirectly to the project manager.

Setting up the project team is usually done early the project process. Projects are formally recognized and established through a document known as the project charter. The charter describes the functional needs necessary to accomplish the goals of the project, defines the project team and its membership and gives the project manager the authority to acquire the resources necessary to accomplish the goals of the project. Based on these needs the team members are selected. The team members usually comprise a cross-functional representation of the organization. Each team member brings skills that collectively complement the team. The team members share the responsibility of the completion of the project goals. Team size will vary somewhat due to the size of the facility and goals of the project.

The core composition of a Computerized Physician Order Entry (CPOE) project team should at the minimum include a project manager, team leader and other team members who are chosen based on the specific needs of the project.

The project manager should be someone with strong management skills since this individual is responsible for the overall management of the project and its deliverables. It is desirable that this individual possess an IT and clinical background. While a clinical background would be helpful it is not necessary. It is also strongly suggested that the project manager have experience in project management and is certified as a Project Management Professional (PMP) by the PMI. This individual serves as the primary point of contact for the project. Finally, the project manager bears ultimate responsibility for the success or failure of the project.

The project may require more than one team leader. At the minimum, there should be a physician lead, usually a respected member of the medical staff. Other team leaders may need to be drawn from nursing, pharmacy, and laboratory. Team leaders need good organizational skills to handle the day to day aspects of the project.

Other Team members are also important and may include representatives from the clinical staff including some from the ranks of those that are not in favor of the project. These other team members can include representatives from laboratory, pharmacy, health information management and IT in order to round out the team. Some of these members may not be utilized throughout the life cycle of the project. Those with specific expertise in certain specialties may only be called upon to lend their expertise for short periods of time.

Source: A Guide to the Project Management Body of Knowledge third edition, Project Management Institute 2004.

Madeleine 16:09, 19 May 2006 (EDT)