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What Is A Stakeholder Analysis?
Stakeholder analysis is the initial activity that you need to execute for proper stakeholder management. Before a project starts, stakeholder analysis is done so that you can thoroughly look into the people whom you will be working with or those who are more likely to get involved with your project’s decision making processes. Through stakeholder analysis; you can easily group your stakeholders based on their interest to your project, the ways on how they can influence you and other stakeholders, and the level of their actual participation to your project activities.
Key Purpose of Stakeholder Analysis
You need to have a strategic plan whenever you are immersed in project management and other related processes. It is essential for you to be tactical when dealing with your stakeholders as they can impact the results of the project itself. Stakeholder analysis can enable you to classify your stakeholders properly which in turn can give you the ability to provide their needs, satisfy their demands, and get their approval. Below are some of the reasons why it is essential for you to conduct a stakeholder analysis.
1. To Promote Alignment Among Project Stakeholders
You need to ensure that you and your stakeholders are all leaning towards achieving a common goal. Your stakeholder analysis is necessary to be made as it can help you know the stakeholders whose deliverables can be used in specific areas of your project plan. Analyzing and assessing your stakeholders can also give you the ability to let stakeholders know how they can align their activities with those of the other stakeholders of the project.
2. To Address Stakeholder Concerns Right Away
Sometimes, a project can be put into pause due to conflicts and issues with stakeholders. Through stakeholder analysis, you can find ways on how you can incorporate trust in all the stages of the project. If you can eliminate the issues and areas of concern of different stakeholders by answering their questions and analyzing their expectations and needs, then you can eliminate items that can potentially disrupt the entire execution of the project.
3. To Ensure That the Project Is Well-Guided By Its Stakeholders
75% of projects actually fail due to the fact that the senior management is not involved in it (source: uottawa). The involvement not only of the senior management but all of your stakeholders is very important whenever you execute a project. By using stakeholder analysis, you can look into the details of a stakeholder’s desired involvement to the project. This can be very useful when disseminating project information to your stakeholders based on their interest and power. Through this, you can become more secured that your stakeholders will be there whenever needed.
Elements of a Power-Interest (Stakeholder Analysis) Matrix
For you to assess the power of your stakeholders and measure their interest towards the project, one of the tools that you can use is a stakeholder analysis matrix. With the help of this specific matrix, you can easily define who your stakeholders are as well as identify their level and scope of influence. A simple power-interest matrix or stakeholder analysis matrix is composed of four quadrants that can make it easier for you to visualize the different groups of stakeholders that you are working with for a given project. Here are the classifications of your stakeholders that you will come up with if you will use a power-interest matrix for your stakeholder analysis:
5 Steps for Making a Comprehensive Stakeholder Analysis
It is usually the task of the project manager to execute stakeholder analysis. However, there are instances where the specific obligation can be handed to product or program managers depending on the circumstance or nature of the project where the analysis will be done. If you want to develop a stakeholder analysis document, it is important for you to be guided accordingly with how you can build your desired output from scratch. Here are five steps that you can follow if you want to make a comprehensive stakeholder analysis:
Step 1: Use the Best Stakeholder Analysis Template To Help You With Your Formatting Efforts
A stakeholder analysis template is a highly-usable tool that can help you focus on the development of the stakeholder analysis’ layout, format, and overall structure. Selecting a suitable and appropriate template can give you the power to ensure that your content is presentable and that your discussion flow can be understood and be well-received by your target audience.
Step 2: Know Who Your Stakeholders Are
Make sure that you will list all of the individuals and/or organizations who are relevant parts and play essential roles in your project’s activities. Try to brainstorm with your project team so you can further enumerate the people who are involved with your project works. Ensure that your list is filled with those entities who have an influence on your decision-making processes and who have an interest in your project’s successes.
Step 3: Appropriately Map Out Your Listed Stakeholders Based on Several Factors
There are several things that you have to prioritize when executing stakeholder analysis. Once you are already aware of who your stakeholders are, it is now time for you to measure their power over your work. Look into your stakeholders based on their interest, power, ability to influence, and project involvement. These items can enable you to manage and monitor your stakeholders closely as well as keep all of them satisfied and informed.
Step 4: Further Understand Your Stakeholders And Analyze Their Participation or Involvement With Your Project
You have to know what motivates your stakeholders. Aside from this, it is important for you to consider their efforts and look at how they can affect your project. Being able to understand your stakeholders accurately can give you an idea on how you can satisfy them without neglecting your project requirements, needs, and demands.
Step 5: Provide Stakeholder Analysis Results
The results of your stakeholder analysis can be used for project plotting and stakeholder planning. Make sure to come up with a presentable stakeholder analysis report that you can utilize for the betterment of your relationship with your stakeholders. Review and evaluate the initial draft of your stakeholder analysis. Be thorough with your assessment so you can change any content or features that need to be updated, removed, or edited.
Advantages of Using an Impressive Stakeholder Analysis
Do you know how stakeholder analysis can affect you and your project? Identifying the benefits that you can get out of developing and using a stakeholder analysis is very important as this can motivate you to create a powerful document that you and the project team can optimize. Below are the advantages of using impressive stakeholder analysis.
Dos and Don’ts for Creating an Effective Stakeholder Analysis
Aside from the procedure that you need to follow so you can have the best possible stakeholder analysis for your project, it is also important for you to know a number of tips that can give you a more efficient time during the development of the specific document. Some of the guidelines that you can follow once you decide to create an effective stakeholder analysis include the following:
1. Do Consider the External Environment of the Project
The internal stakeholders of your project include your project team members, the sponsors who will provide and/or help you get the resources that you need, the departments that are tasked to execute their deliverable based on project requirements, the owners of the project, and the management of the business. Aside from these stakeholders, it is also important for you to look into the external environment or the entities that can also affect your project results. Your project analysis should also consider the community where your project is at, the competitors that you need to stand out from, your target audience, the government, and/or the media.
2. Do Ensure That You Will Clarify the Expectations and Requirements of Your Stakeholders
A part of your stakeholder analysis is to know how you can properly interact and communicate with your stakeholders. Hence, it is imperative for you to ensure that you have a clear understanding of what your stakeholders expect and require from you. Your stakeholder analysis must enable you to build rapport with the different stakeholders of the project and knowing their needs and reasonable demands are some of the things that you have to consider within the actual process of your analysis.
3. Do Define The Participation and Interest of Your Stakeholders to the Project
Your stakeholder analysis should be straightforward in terms of providing an idea about your stakeholders’ level of participation. This can enable you to know how interested they are to support the project and how willing they are to use their power and resources to positively impact potential project results.
1. Don’t Make Your Stakeholder Analysis Vague
Do not let your stakeholder analysis be open for other kinds of interpretations. You have to be clear, transparent, and direct to the point when developing the content of your stakeholder analysis. Developing a vague stakeholder analysis can bring you no good as this can only confuse your target audience on how your stakeholders can affect your project based on the measures that you have set.
2. Don’t Develop a Stakeholder Analysis Without a Purpose
Know the main reason why you are developing a stakeholder analysis. Knowing where you will use the stakeholder analysis and how you can effectively use it can make it easier for you to optimize and maximize the document’s availability. You have to list down the purpose of your stakeholder analysis so you can let your team become more particular on how they can incorporate the results shown by the document to their project plans of action.
3. Don’t Start Your Stakeholder Analysis Without Proper Stakeholder Identification
To begin your stakeholder analysis, it is important for you to truly know the entities who are involved in the project. The proper identification of your stakeholders can enable you to assess the right individuals or groups who can impact your project based on their power, interest, and actual involvement.
A stakeholder analysis is relatively easy to execute. With this, there is no need for you to be intimidated with the steps that you need to take leading to the creation of the stakeholder analysis that your project needs. Do you need additional help with the development of your stakeholder analysis document? We recommend you to download our printable templates and samples so you can find it easier and faster to come up with the output that you aspire to have for your stakeholder analysis processes.