The First Three Project Roles To Appoint

Project Roles

There are many project roles with some having a greater involvement as the project progresses. However there are 3 key project roles that need to be appointed early. In this post I will outline the 3 project roles and the differences between each role.

Project Roles

Photo credit: Office Now

3 Project Roles

  • Sponsor
  • Business Lead
  • Project Manager


The Sponsor should be a Director of the organisation. They need to be someone with financial authority and be able to allocate extra resources to the project. The Sponsor should have a vested interest in the successful outcome of the project.

Project Role of The Sponsor

  • Responsible To The Board For Delivery
  • Owns The Project Budget
  • Responsible For Benefits Realisation
  • Authorises Project Scope
  • Approves Project Documents
  • Authorises Project Changes

Business Lead

The Business Lead will be more junior in the organisation than the Sponsor. They will need to have significant experience as their role will be to implement the project on behalf of the Sponsor. The main difference between the Sponsor and the Business Lead is the Sponsor will have financial approval and not be involved on the project everyday.

Project Role of The Business Lead

  • Responsible To The Sponsor
  • Has Vested Interest In Success
  • Can Answer Queries
  • Shapes The Solution
  • Works With The Project Manager
  • Has Day To Day Involvement In The Project

Project Manager

The Project Manager will work day to day with the Business Lead on the delivery of the project. The main difference between the Business Lead and the Project Manager is the project manager will handle the day to day completion of tasks. The Business Lead is the subject matter expect who can answer an queries on Operational process and how the end product should look and feel.

Project Role of The Project Manager

  • Responsible For Day To Day Delivery
  • Captures and Mitigates Risk
  • Records and Ensures Issues Are Resolved
  • Produces and Manages The Schedule
  • Ensures Tasks Are Completed
  • Keeps Project Within Agreed Time, Cost, Quality and Scope
  • Updates Project Stakeholders

What do you think? Are there any extra tasks you think should be part of these roles?