The project proposal represents a step of the project documentation, featuring basic coordinates and approaches the project is based on. It also provides reasons why the project is worthwhile and appropriate according to business practices and requirements.
The main function of the project proposal is to raise awareness that a project may be viable, useful and appropriate. Being less detailed than a feasibility study, the proposal is defined by a senior team member and can be used at any level of the organization. It should at least provide basic guidelines on how the project is supposed to accomplish and implement according to rules and regulations and the resources used for implementation.
The content of a project proposal
Defining a particular perspective on solving the problem and finding a solution, the project proposal should feature the following items:
- Name of the project
- Project initiator
- Project sponsor (not required)
- Technical details (not required)
- Description of the project and its justification
- Resources for development and management
- Budget allocated for project implementation (not required)
The information contained by the project proposal should be objective and allow independent assessment and suggestions. Let's take each of these components separately.
- The name of the project should be descriptive and show what exactly the project includes. Is not advisable to use creative names or irrelevant terms to name the project otherwise, misinterpretations could appear.
- The initiator of the project is the author of the proposal and should clearly show the name, function and contact information of the initiator (physical address along with email and phone number)
- Including the project sponsor is an optional step. Here you can include the name of the project manager or the executive level authority actually sponsoring the project proposal.
- The inclusion of technical details is also an optional step. Here you can put the name of the organization or the person charged with the project implementation.
- The next step supposes to give a general description for the project and the reasons why the project is worthwhile and practical.
- Mention the resources for development or abilities required for the success of the project.
- Including the budget allocated for the project is optional but, if available, you should give accurate and realistic numbers.
All in all, the project proposal is an internal paper and may be considered a volatile document while it proposes a change to actual business practices. To be received favorably, the higher the levels of support are, the more likely is to be approved.
Here is an example of a project proposal form: