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Free Project Management Plan Templates

by Kate Eby on Aug 08, 2019

In this article, you’ll find all the project management plan templates you need to get started on a comprehensive project plan. We’ve included templates that cover all aspects of project planning, from scope and budget to communication and scheduling. 

If you are new to project management plan templates, start by reading the What to Include in a Project Management Plan section.

Included on this page, you'll find a project management plan, a project management plan outline in both Microsoft Word and Google Docs, an integrated project plan template, and many more.

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Templates for Presenting and Tracking the Project

The following templates include sheets, widgets, and outlines that can help you present an overview of the project to stakeholders. These templates also help you monitor progress as you execute the project.

Project Management Plan Outline Template

Project Management Plan Template

A comprehensive project management plan includes many plans and documents necessary for the success of a project. Project plan sub-documents may consist of the project scope, work breakdown structure (WBS), milestone list, and more. This project management plan template also provides an outline, so you can include all plan details in one document or attach or link to separate planning documents.

Download Project Management Plan Outline Template

Word | Google Docs

Resource Requirement Calendar Chart Template

Download Resource Requirement Calendar Chart

Excel | Google Sheets

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Integrated Project Plan Dashboard Template

A dashboard provides a handy means for project managers, stakeholders, and team members to display summaries of important metrics. This integrated project plan template includes a task list that updates a corresponding Gantt chart as you begin and complete tasks. The template also offers a widget to summarize task status, project spending, and pending items.

Download Integrated Content Plan Dashboard Template - Excel 


Integrated Project Plan (IPP) Template

You may need a narrative description of parts or all of your project plan. However, a visual depiction can convey how aspects of the project relate to one another and the schedule. With this integrated project plan template, choose a Gantt chart or static timeline. Then, complete the task list, list responsible parties, and add due dates. The template also includes a cost baseline sheet and a communication plan sheet.

Download Integrated Content Project Plan Template - Excel 


Project Management Plan Template

Project Plan Template

This customizable template suggests the items you need to prepare to implement your project and provides space for each item’s due date. Additionally, find sections for the project approval phase, project planning, project execution, and project close.  

Download Project Plan Template

Excel | Smartsheet


Templates for Researching and Preparing a Project Plan

The following project management planning templates can help you as you determine and document the tasks and resources required to complete a project.

Project Scope Statement Template

The project scope defines the deliverables and the resources you need to complete those deliverables. By identifying these elements before the project begins, you reduce the chances of scope creep, wherein expectations and budgets expand without limit. When you write a project scope, refer to project objectives, goal statements, and the project charter. If you are a vendor preparing a project plan, you may refer instead to the statement of work you received with the request for proposal (RFP). 

Project Scope Statement Template

The project scope template below details the following: the project deliverables; the project assumptions; what is out of scope for the project; the time, budget, quality, regulatory, and resource constraints; and the tasks you need to accomplish in order to create the deliverables. In this template, you can describe the tasks without a separate work breakdown structure document, or use the WBS template that follows.

Download Project Scope Statement Template - Word


Work Breakdown Structure (WBS) Template

A work breakdown structure provides a visual tool for understanding how you can accomplish a project. Start with the goal or deliverable at the top and then break down the effort needed into smaller and smaller tasks. A WBS focuses on tasks and deliverables but complements the project schedule, which offers a high-level view of the work required over time. Some project management pundits suggest that leadership benefits most from schedules, while teams and individuals benefit from a WBS. This template offers a fill-in-the-blanks diagram and a task list template. Use both formats with the scope of work template.

Download Work Breakdown Structure Template - Excel 


Stakeholder Management Plan Template

Stakeholder analysis identifies individuals and groups with a potential interest in the project, determines the extent of their interest and degree of possible influence, and attempts to understand the best means of communicating with those individuals and groups about the project. A stakeholder analysis forms a significant basis for the project communication plan. 

This stakeholder management template offers space to list stakeholders, describe their role in the organization and in your project, identify the types of project activities that might interest them, define their level of commitment, and supply the reasons for their interest in your project. One sheet of this template includes a stakeholder analysis matrix, so you can create a visual evaluation of the level of commitment and influence for each stakeholder.

Download Stakeholder Management Plan Template

Excel | Smartsheet


Cost Estimate and Projected Budget Template

Use this cost estimation and budget template to document the process for determining and, if necessary, adjusting your budget. The template provides a table to identify who can approve spending limit breaches and space to describe the budgeting procedure, the cost baseline procedure, the change procedure, and the proposed budget.

Download Cost Estimate and Projected Budget Template

Word | PDF


Risk Assessment Templates

Organizations have risks, and projects are also susceptible to problems, such as accidents, scope creep, or vendor problems with supply or quality. This risk assessment template focuses on risks to task and project deadlines, but you can tailor the linked template to address other risks, too. The template details the task description, deadline, risk level, and status in the task table, and the statistics for the project are displayed in the status and priority table.

Download Project Risk Management Plan Template

Excel | Smartsheet

Project Resource Plan Template

A resource plan lists the equipment, supplies, and staffing needed for a project. Resource plans help schedule shared resources, including hardware, software, and office or workspace. This template outlines project phases and then lists resources by project phase, role, department, pay rate, and more.

Download Project Resource Plan Template

Excel | Smartsheet


Project Executive Summary Template

You start your project plan document or presentation with an executive summary, which encapsulates the project at a high level. However, the executive summary should be the last piece of content or document you write as you create a plan. To write this summary, refer to the project charter for plan details, or, if you are a vendor or contractor fulfilling part of a larger project, refer to the project statement of work. This customizable template walks you through the elements of an executive summary, including major milestones and issues to be solved. Add your own summary components as required.

Download Project Executive Summary Template

Excel | Smartsheet


Templates for Implementing and Managing a Project Plan

The example project management plans that follow will help you solve problems, communicate with your team and stakeholders, and ensure quality deliverables as you implement the project.

Project Governance Template

Project governance describes how you will conduct the project and who has responsibility and accountability for the effective and efficient execution of the project. This project governance template outlines the project scope and lists who is responsible for what requirements and tasks. It also offers a RACI matrix and provides space to link to the resumes of key personnel. Additionally, the template details the process for managing and escalating issues, the decision-making process, and the quality assurance process. 

Download Project Governance Template

Excel | Word


Communication Plan Template

To conduct a successful project, internal and external stakeholders must be clear on goals and changes. A communication plan template assists you in documenting stakeholders, contact information, areas of interest, required information, and message format and frequency. 

Download Communication Plan Template - Word


Chronological or Simple Timeline Template

A timeline is an essential tool in project management. Timelines capture the required activities in a project in the form of high-level milestones or detailed tasks and sub-tasks and show how those activities relate to each other. This chronological timeline works well for simple projects. With this template, you can add tasks to the list, and those tasks will appear in the timeline.

Download Chronological or Simple Timeline Template

Excel | Smartsheet


Gantt Timeline Template

A dynamic Gantt chart can serve as a timeline for more complex projects. Add milestones to the timeline to focus all eyes on the prize and highlight dependencies among tasks.

Download Gantt Timeline Template

Excel | Smartsheet


Change Management Process Template

Change is inevitable in projects, but it’s much better to plan for change and provide a consistent process for reviewing, implementing, and tracking adjustments and updates. This change management process template offers a visual tool for understanding how to suggest changes, reviewing proposed changes, planning for their implementation, and assessing the results. 

Download Change Management Process Template

Word | PDF


Test Plan Template

To guarantee a successful and usable deliverable, create a quality assurance or quality control plan. This test plan template is particularly adapted to Agile product development, but can be customized to fit your management approach and product. Simply list the test ID, the test number, the test description, the expected and actual result, whether the product passed or failed, and pertinent comments. 

Download Test Plan Template - Excel


What to Include in a Project Management Plan

A successful project starts with a detailed project management plan. Project management plan templates guide you through the planning process, so you can focus on the details rather than trying to remember what you must include. To make your job easier and help ensure successful planning, download the templates included in this article. 

A project management plan may consist of one document or a collection of component documents that provide extra detail for specific planning areas, such as the schedule, the work breakdown structure, or the stakeholder analysis. Whether combined or separate, most project management plan templates contain the following sections:

Introduction

Briefly describe the project’s purpose, goals, and deliverables. Refer to the project charter when you write this section.


Project Approach or Executive Summary

Outline the management approach for the project. List key personnel and anyone with specific responsibilities and decision-making authority. Describe any assumptions and constraints. You may also include risks in this section.


Project Scope

To avoid scope creep, you must clearly define what outcomes you expect from the project and what is out of scope. The project charter provides a starting point for defining scope, but you should also include the following sections in your project scope statement or link to separate documents:

  • Work Breakdown Structure (WBS): The work breakdown structure offers a visual description of all the high and low-level tasks needed to create the deliverables. In the WBS diagram, list the major tasks at the top and then break down the items into smaller and smaller tasks until you determine the smallest tasks or work packages. The WBS works with the work breakdown structure dictionary, which is a detailed list of tasks, owners, due dates, and more.
  • Schedule Baseline: To understand whether your activities, milestones, and project are on track, create a schedule baseline. 
  • Milestones: Milestones mark important stages of completion in your project. Create a list of high-level milestones, and briefly introduce them and their context in the overall project schedule.

Change Management Plan

A change management plan offers a consistent model for documenting, submitting, approving, and tracking changes in a project. These important instructions are often created in a separate document.


Risk Management Plan

For the project plan, summarize the risk management approach, including the process for identifying risks and the mitigation strategy. At the end of the project, during the after-action analysis, the project manager will assess the identified risks against the management approach and recommend any improvements for future projects.

A risk register captures each risk and mitigation action. A register is essential for quality improvement and may be required for regulatory compliance. It logs a unique ID for a risk, a risk detail, who identified the risk, the date during which they identified it, the probability of the risk, the severity of its impact, and so on. In PRINCE2, a risk register is known as a risk log.


Project Scope Management Plan

The project scope management section describes who has the authority to constrain efforts. It details the tools and methods for establishing project scope, including supporting documents. Those supporting documents may include the WBS and project charter or statement of work. The scope management plan should also explain how you measure and track scope. In addition, the document should clearly articulate how the project manager communicates scope to the team.


Communication Plan

Your communication plan describes the project information you need to share with your team and stakeholders, the identity of those recipients, their contact information, and the means and frequency of communication. The communication plan is crucial to the efficient functioning of the project. Consider conducting a stakeholder analysis early in project planning, so you can use it to inform the communication plan.


Cost Management Plan

In a cost management plan, you describe how you will measure, manage, and report costs for the project duration. Identify who has responsibility for controlling costs, how they approve and track budget changes, and the means by which and frequency with which they report on the budget.

A cost baseline describes the approved, time-phased spending for a project and represents the combined total of the estimated project cost and contingency reserves.


Resource or Procurement Plan

The resource plan or procurement plan defines spending limits and identifies who has the authority to approve amounts that exceed those limits. It also details the types of resources you’ll be using, such as equipment, utilities, infrastructure, and costs, and indicates whether you will rent, lease, or purchase such items.
 


Resource Calendar

A resource calendar provides a visual reference for understanding when and for how long you require important resources. Whoever has functional responsibility for the included resources must approve the resource calendar.


Human Resources Management Plan

The human resources plan outlines the skill sets required for the project, the pay rates for the project, and whether HR will staff the project with new hires or contractors.


Quality Management Plan

To ensure that your completed project meets quality expectations, create a quality management plan. This plan defines the standards against which you will judge the final outcome. The plan also identifies the processes that will gauge the work. In the quality plan, note who is responsible for quality, and describe any applicable quality assurance or quality control regulations, standards, processes, and tools. 

A quality baseline articulates the specific metrics by which you will assess quality throughout the project. To discover the appropriate metrics, you should review the current quality management process or standards, any recent or similar projects, and any pertinent industry or regulatory standards.

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Other Helpful Project Management Templates

Other documents and plans can help you describe the unique aspects of your project plan. Here is a selection of links to supporting samples and templates:


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