Alternative name(s)
Iter4 FlyEmirates.jpg
Source: Google Images (2013)

Product sponsorship; Project directorship, project ownership (PMI, 2008)


The project sponsor sustains executive approval for the project, they offer supports for gaining timely resources and strategic direction (Project Connections, 2013). According to Thomsett (2009), project sponsorship is based on the powerful concepts: taking time in the sponsor’s diary, one to three hours once a week for meeting project managers, stakeholders and team members to understand the project progress; paying more attention on the project and making significant decisions throughout the project life cycle; adopting face-to-face conversation.

Also, project sponsorship is a vigorous position; the success of the project depends on the selection of project sponsor. For numerous projects, project sponsorship provides opportunity to achieve from the knowledge, experience and links of a good number of senior work forces. For the successful Information systems development and its implementation, it is considered to be dependent on project sponsorship. Therefore project sponsorship is important in deciding the success of information systems development (Liu & Yetton, 2010).

Agile values

Communication: Project sponsorship is nothing but the ownership of the project on behalf of client organization. Therefore one of agile values relevant to project sponsorship is communication as the project sponsor may communicate with the project management team asking for few modifications on the final end product.

Feedback: The client is always given importance in any project as the project team has to deliver the final end product according to client’s requirements. Therefore in project sponsorship, where the sponsor will be the owner on behalf of the client organization, will give feedback to project management team to deliver the end product according to the client’s requirements

Agile principles

The below principles are from agile manifesto principles:
Customer satisfaction: Project sponsorship is important in supporting the project team to reach the given target by the customer and the project sponsor has to provide the necessary support to the project team in order to satisfy the customer.

Build projects around motivated individuals: In project sponsorship, it is not only giving the financial support, but there should also be motivation provided to the project team and the trust they need to get job done well before the specified time.

Welcome change; every project undergoes change , therefore project sponsorship also provides the client organisation with option to undergo change provided it does not go against the contract and project sponsor will allow changes as per the customer requirements even in late development.

Agile practices

XP Metaphor - a shared story:
For XP (extreme programming), project sponsor plays significant role in value-based investment decisions, if project sponsor does not execute accountability to consider entire business value, inappropriate strategic decisions will be produced by project sponsor. Eventually, project sponsorship cannot direct project team to achieve intended objectives of the project (Yap, 2008).

XP On-site Customer - available full-time:
In order to address this problem and make effective decisions, Yap (2008) deemed that scarce development resources are assigned to the projects to offer the highest value. Also project sponsorship will require project progress report and financial feedback associated with business value. First of all, project sponsor is charge for on-going development costs to eliminate the fixed cost nature of development (Yap, 2008). Then, when project scope is increased, it is necessary to notice project sponsor of the additional changes immediately (Yap, 2008). Finally, any potential slip in project schedule should be balanced against the cost of delaying future projects due to scope changes (Yap, 2008).


In terms of traditional method, such as Waterfall, project manager prevent information openness and freedom. Fear as one of reasons that it will lead to chaos. Moreover, project managers control information, and teams often feel like that they do not understand what is going on. Only project managers have opportunities to interact with project sponsor (CCPACE, 2011).

On the other hand, in the Agile world, project sponsor executes their responsibilities and provides knowledge and experience to champion the project. For instance, XP promote openness to make every team member to access information and data such as using Story Cards, and make them to contribute the project (CCPACE, 2011).

Links from this KA to other KAs

There is a number of Knowledge Areas associated with Project Sponsorship, namely Project Leadership, Project Scope Management, Sponsorship and Strategic Decision Management.


Bryde. (2007). Perceptions of the impact of project sponsorship practices on project success. International Journal of Project Management. 26 (3), 801-804.Online available at: [Accessed 26 march 2013]

CCPACE (2011) Agile Project Management. Available at: [Accessed: 26 March, 2013].

Google Images (2013) AC Milan Away & Third Shirt 2012/2013 Available at:
1360& [Accessed: 28 March, 2013]

Liu, L. & Yetton, P. (2010). Sponsorship and IT vendor management of projects. Journal of Information Technology. 25 (3), 56-57.Online available at:[ Accessed 26 march 2013]

PMI (2008). A Guide to the Project Management Body of Knowledge. 4th edn. PA: Project Managment Institute [Online] Available at: [Accessed: 22 February, 2013]

Project Connections (2013) Project Sponsor Roles and Responsibilities. Available at: [Accessed: 25 March, 2013].

Thomsett, R. (2009) Sponsoring Agile: Loosening Rigidity Around Business Cases. Available at:
[Accessed: 25 March, 2013].

Yap, M. (2008) Implementing Value-Based Extreme Programming. Available at: [Accessed: 26 March, 2013].

External links Being an Effective Product Owner Scrum and Project Governance Building Your Project Using Extreme Programming