Blog Posts Process Analysis

BPI Design Charters – Focus Phase

Blog: Biz-Performance, David Brown

BPI Design Charters – Focus Phase


  • Documents which serve as the “terms of reference” to guide Design Teams during the BPI program. They provide specific focused direction and set of expectations to each team being commissioned to proceed with a defined Focus Area. While Design Charters typically outline an approach to be taken in achieving the team’s objectives, the detailed activities and worksteps are usually developed by the teams themselves, and may take the form of Work Packages.    

Client Value

  • Design Charters provide Design Teams with a focused mandate and set of expectations, and more-manageable, shorter-term timeframes. Charters are particularly valuable in coordinating multiple teams’ activities (i.e., when several initiatives are proceeding in parallel). Having a clearly-defined Design Charter gives Design Teams a greater sense of control over meeting their mandated     goals. The omission of Design Charters leads to problems of overlapping mandates and duplicated (and often contradictory) design efforts.


Development of a Design Charter involves defining at a high level the scope, targets and approach for a given Focus Area (which may comprise one or several processes). Once appointed, key team members work together to ‘flesh out’ additional details of the assignment they will be accepting. For example, they translate the overall Stretch Targets into process-specific improvement targets. Multiple Design Charters are approved by management who validate the scope of the project and the approach to be taken.
  1. Confirm the scope (start/finish points) and success targets for the defined area of work.
  2. Establish major (high-level) activities that must take place within the given time-frame.
  3. Designate key team members, and with their input define:
    1. Background and Case for Change project rationale and history as they relate to the Focus Area
    2. Objectives the ‘vision’ for the Focus Area as it relates to process customers and/or     ‘end-users’
    3. Refined Improvement Targets the contribution of this Focus Area to achieving the overall Stretch Targets for the BPI program
    4. Scope of the Design Charter activities and relevant go-forward issues Guiding ‘design principles’ directions given by senior management regarding how to (and how not to) orient ‘To-Be’ solutions during process design workshops
    5. Approach general recommended approach for proceeding (e.g. a series of workshops)
    6. Resources and Time-frame number of participants, schedule and duration of meetings
    7. Interdependencies with other activities.
  4. Review output of Step 3.0 with sponsor(s) and obtain sign-off agreement that this output represents the team’s Design Charter.



  • There may be several initiatives running in parallel at a particular point in time, and therefore several charters. Ensure that every Design Charter is placed into the ‘Program Book’, and also that every Charter includes steps for co-ordinating with other interdependent activities.

Tactics/Helpful Hints

  • Wait until the team is assembled before completing the Charter. The Charter should be     owned by the team, not by the project.

Resources and Timing

  • Keep Charter time-frames short, no more than several months. The team is able to visualize a clear road ahead and an end in sight, and will receive     early gratification.

Leave a Comment

Get the BPI Web Feed

Using the HTML code below, you can display this Business Process Incubator page content with the current filter and sorting inside your web site for FREE.

Copy/Paste this code in your website html code:

<iframe src="" frameborder="0" scrolling="auto" width="100%" height="700">

Customizing your BPI Web Feed

You can click on the Get the BPI Web Feed link on any of our page to create the best possible feed for your site. Here are a few tips to customize your BPI Web Feed.

Customizing the Content Filter
On any page, you can add filter criteria using the MORE FILTERS interface:

Customizing the Content Filter

Customizing the Content Sorting
Clicking on the sorting options will also change the way your BPI Web Feed will be ordered on your site:

Get the BPI Web Feed

Some integration examples