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Starting into a project with the Project Canvas


A "Canvas" is the frame on which a painting is created. This term has a few years ago also found its way into management and is now also used to describe projects. The goal of a "Project Canvas" is, clearly illustrating the key aspects of a project on one page. The canvas is subdivided in different sections (http://www.projektivisten.de/downloads.html, e.g. in project objectives, activities, schedule, resources, organization and cooperation. A project manager and his team can use the canvas for defining and planning a project and to resolve outstanding issues with the client or customer. The project controlling is of course also based on the information provided in the canvas. For illustrating the current status of the project, filing a status report and tracing changes the canvas can also act as basis. Finally, it acts as basis for communication with the stakeholders, this is why it should be freely accessible.

The canvas has been deliberately kept simple and pragmatic. Thus, also projects in an environment with little experience in project management can handle it easily. For more complex projects additional documents can supplement the Project Canvas, e.g. specifications, design documents or organisational guidelines. The canvas can of course be adapted to the specific situation of the project, the type of project or the company. Training for project managers should provide the basic idea of the canvas plus background information and know-how. Our experiences show that the Project Canvas is an ideal tool for entering into the topic of project management. In our download area a Project Canvas is available for free, so give it a try ...