Explain Importance Of A Sponsor. Describe 4 Responsibilities

Paul Naybour

Sponsor role is important to the project since he provides
leadership, develops the business case, and oversees the development of the
products / deliverables along the project life cycle. Sponsor is responsible
for the benefits realisation. Sponsor is usually an experienced person with
wide range of relationships who can support the project team and have influence
on other stakeholders involved in the project. The sponsor will often be
selected and supported by the Steering Group and his role is business oriented.

Four responsibilities of the Sponsor includes:


  1. Sponsor is Owner of the business Case: Sponsor is responsible for the development of the business case,
    which will identify the costs, benefits and risks for the project. This
    is important
    at the early stages of the project lifecycle in order to
    justify the need for the project, and whether it will assist in meeting the
    strategic goals of the organisation. For example, a mega infrastructure
    project is required to serve a new developed big city and is considered as an
    ideal opportunity for an organisation who is aiming to be one of the biggest
    infrastructure companies in the world.


  •  Sponsor helps Project
    Manager to manage Stakeholders, and resolve complicated issues. Sponsor will
    often have the experience, skills, wide range of political and business relationships
    which enables him to convince and influence other stakeholders for
    the benefit of the project. For example, Sponsor may have
    relationships with governmental bodies that may be delaying the approvals on
    the master plan of the new housing project.


  • Sponsor is responsible for approving changes to the baselines of
    the project. Sponsor will provide approval on
    any changes to the project that will affect the original baselines identified
    in the business case (i.e. time, cost, quality and benefits).Sponsor may be
    assisted by the change control board to decide whether changes will be
    approved, rejected or differed to another time. That is important
    to secure the baselines of the project from any un-control changes. For example,
    Stakeholders required reducing the capacity of the new underground parking, and
    that will have impact on the benefits realised from the project, as well as
    time and cost.


  • Sponsor is responsible for identifying key strategic business risks
    that may face the project and proactively pass this
    information down to the project manager rather than simply dealing with the
    risks and escalated issues raised by the project manager. That is
    as it will save the project wasted cost and time which will be
    spent in dealing with risks and issues. For example, sponsor is
    aware that the government will not approve the construction of a new sea outfall
    at the location proposed by the project team since new beaches are planned, and
    therefore early study for another solution need to be undertaken to avoid

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