The Project Handbook is a communication tool to summarise the key, high level initiative information for stakeholders. By reading the handbook, the stakeholder will have a good impression on what the initiative involves and what it is looking to achieve. It outlines the scope and narrative surrounding the initiative, including its objectives, deliverables, benefits and constraints.
It is not an approval document, but can be used as a Project Initiation Document (PID) and / or Initiative Definition Document (IDD), as it contains the same information.
The Project Handbook should be updated when the initiative completes a lifecycle stage, goes through a Gateway Review or change request.
The Project Handbook can be scaled and tailored for initiatives of varying size and levels of complexity, with the headings included relevant to all. Those projects and programmes reporting to the University Change Delivery Group are required to complete a Project Handbook as this is made available to member of UEG and Council for reference.
For a lighter touch, the Initiative Summary Document is a useful alternative document. This can be downloaded from the Delivering Results website.
The benefits of producing this document is both to explain the purpose of the initiative to those not involved, such as the Marketing or Communications teams, and also to unify understanding of the initiative’s aims and scope within the project team.