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Project Closure Report

Project Closure Report.

SK Saxena PMP      

Project Closing

Any project as per its definition is a temporary endeavor and it must be closed for further operations. The project closure signifies the end of project and starting of operation theoretically, but in actual practice the operations team starts taking over the project before its completion, and some cosmetic construction works, or the left-over works continue even after start of operations.

These operations and works are of non-interfering nature and overlapping most of the time. But there must be a dead line for overlapping period in between the two and it is mentioned in the project closure report, if required.

Project Closure is an important part of project management processes but is overlooked by the project team as it has no home or the lack of interest of management, particularly if business expansion is not required especially in small business operations and small organizations. Or the organization is in hurry to take new ventures or the project is not successful to the desired extent. It happens if the objective of the project, gets linked to project deliverable only in reference to cost and time overrun.

Project closing is the part of project management process group and it should be given the same importance as other process groups.

Project if not closed:

1-Reduces the credibility and responsibility of the project team

2-Organisations may not have guidance for its business expansion

3-Related projects may have risks by not sharing the Project Closure report

 There are two process of project closure: The Procurement Closure and the Administrative Closure.



According to A Guide to The Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK® Guide), “The Project Closing Process Group consists of those processes performed to conclude all activities across all Project Management Process Groups to formally complete the project, phase, or contractual obligations. This process group, when completed, verifies that the defined processes are completed within all of the Process Groups to close the project of phase, as appropriate, and formally establishes that the project or project phase is complete”

Some tips for closing project

Project Management consists of managing all process groups of all knowledge areas. All knowledge areas are planned initially and incorporate subsequent amendments in them, if amended during execution. In closing operation, it is to be ensured that project is complete as planned, knowledge area wise.

Project need closure, be it successful or not successful to the desired objective or without achievement of objective. In all these positions it is necessary to know at closing stage the  status of project with respect to baseline.

A closure of the project is a formal orderly end of the project activities. The contents of the closure report are used in taking up the next project or benchmarking the existing project or for providing solution to the ongoing projects. Once the project is closed the formal acceptance is taken from the stakeholders


Closure may be of the phase of project or project.

Closing exercise is done at predetermined time or at the end of processes or project.


Project closure requirements include

Project Audits


Deliverables status

Acceptance status

Closing of contracts

Resources reassignment details

Transfer of Knowledge to operation team


The processes require (as for all processes) the inputs, the tools and techniques, and the outputs, and these depends on the nature and type of the project,  as project is unique.

The process guidelines are addressed in PMBOK Guide and may be adopted and customized as per need. The excerpts from the book are given below:


Project Charter

Project management Plan (all Knowledge Area Plans such as Cost, Time, Quality. Communication. Risk, Procurement and others)

Project Documents

Assumption Log

Basis of Estimates

Change Log

Issue Log

Lessons Learnt

Miles Stone List

Project Communication

Quality Control Measurements

Quality Report

Requirements Documentation

Risk Register

Risk Report

Accepted Deliverables

Business Documents

Business Case

Benefit Management Plan


Procurement Documents

Organization Process Assets

Tools and techniques

Expert Judgement

Data Analysis

Document Analysis

Regression Analysis

Trend Analysis

Variance Analysis



Project Document Updates

Lessons Learned Register

Final Project (Product, Service. Results, Transition Knowledge)

Final Reports

Organization Processes Assets Report


 During the process of project execution, the project documents are maintained and updated as the ongoing works or activities are completed. This is necessary as later it may not be possible to recoup the data and information (the project team may not have a home during completion stage of the project). At the time of closure, the contents of these documents are finalized.

 The lesson learnt during the project execution are also finalized and it becomes an important document of project closure process. The lesson learned contents may include scope management, change controls, issues and their resolutions, risks and other knowledge area controls specifying the important steps taken which were not envisaged during the planning stage.


A project after the closure, is transferred to operations and maintenance team of the customer or organization itself. An overlap in the project and operation team on timeline is desirable, as it facilitates the smooth transition by better understanding the project deliverables and operation requirement.


It describes the business case outcomes, the charter envisaged status, with variations for scope management, cost, time, resources, quality objectives and other Knowledge Area important variations, issues and resolution along with status of Health, Safety, Security, Environment and Corporate Social Responsibility.


Some important terms defined in brief


Assumption Log

The assumption logs are of two types:  high level and low-level assumptions.
Assumptions are anything / parameter in project management / business management, which are not known with definiteness, but these are accepted as true or certain to carry forward planning of knowledge area activities.


These assumptions are verified during project life cycle and as such a log is maintained, so that assumptions are not missed from verification for final acceptance. In business case, the assumptions are considered as high level and in project life cycle are considered as low level.

 When going for planning knowledge areas, for so many actions, parameters are assumed for planning in first stage and later when the assumption is not found correct, it is rectified to the desired extent during the project life cycle, be it in business case or project definition.

Expert Judgement


Expert Judgement is a technique, in which judgement is provided for process development, based on available specifications, expertise in product development and is valid for processes of the project management.

 The environment considers the education, the knowledge, the skills and experience of the work force involved for project operations.


The judges  team may consist of specialists, journalists who provide judgement for all knowledge areas, based on organizational strategy, project requirement, best practices of the related projects, etcetera for management fields, such as analysis of data and information, outputs, and best management practices of business industry and technical knowledge.

Data Analysis

Data collection and analysis provides  information for knowledge and actions, and is done for all types of data such as for costing, quality, and variances etcetera, for decision making.
    Also the type of analysis may  includes the existing project documents ( both during planning and generated during execution stage).  The document selected depends on the type of the processes involved.


They refer to the outcome of the project and establishes that products, service or results are to the satisfaction of customer (As agreed for business) and as such the project deliverables must be acceptable to the customer. Acceptance of deliverables is a requirement for project closure.

Issue Logs

Problems are continuously faced during project life cycle and if solutions are not provided, these becomes issues to be taken up at project at higher level for solutions. The issues are due to gaps in planning or project operations not sincerely taken up or may be due to unknown risks and may include health, safety, security, environment and corporate social responsibility issues.

Project Document Updates

Updates are provided to all formerly control documents throughout the life cycle of the project. The updates to the documents are the changes and as such these should be the part of the change log. These documents include


All generated documents during project life cycle

Joint Inspections

Testing records


Project history

Operation and Maintenance Manuals

As executed drawings

Quality and HSSE manuals

Contract task performance list

Benefits transferred in stages of the project

Construction Manual

Corporate social responsibility performance report

Requirement Documents

The Requirement documentation is a documentation of all the business requirements, starting from high level in business management to low level in project management. It is part of scope management. The requirements may be categorized. The fulfilling of requirements adds to business value and as such all the requirements from start to end in the project life cycle are tracked with requirement traceability matrix

Activity List

Activity list is the list of activities required to be taken up from project activities. Each activity is defined with work description so that it is understood by the project team and the constructor.

The milestones are tools in project management that mark points on the project timeline, that depicts required agreed outputs. These points are to be achieved in project as per the timeline. And if not, the actions are taken in project execution process for stressing that these millstones remain as scheduled.

Basis of Estimation

Time duration of the project is an important aspect, and it needs to be maintained to avoid time overrun and then the cost overrun. The time duration derivations must be based on tested procedures and based on time durations estimation. The document may include


Estimation details
Assumptions if any
Constraint considered
Risk associated with duration estimation

The basis of estimation must inform the confidence level of estimation and the range of variation of duration.

Project Business Documentation

The documents include the project business case and the project benefit management plan. Project Manager must have the thorough study of the documents to align the project development with business.

Quality Control Measurements
Project Quality is assured in quality management document with formats approved for measuring the control quality actions.
Any variation in excess to specified variances must be discussed and new formats be got approved if required.

Project Communications
It is most important project management part and is taken up with verbal and nonverbal means. The purpose is to appraise the stakeholders about the progress of the project milestones, deliverables, cost and time overrun etcetera important for assessment at the high level, and at the low level, that is within the project, the communications necessary for all project process execution,

Risk Register

Risk register it is a key planning tool for risk management plans. The risk assessment is based on probability and it may be true or false. Utmost care is needed to monitor the identified risk timely. The risks are documented in Register along with their attributes. Format of register may contain details as
Risk priority
Risk category
Risk Trigger
Response strategy
Risk owners
Risk period and response date

Agreement is a negotiated and usually legally enforceable understanding between two or more parties. The standard documents are available for agreements which can be customized for desired use. (A contract is a specific type of agreement that, by its terms and elements, is legally binding and enforceable in a court of law.) FIDIC and world bank contract document guidelines may be adopted 

Procurement documentation
These documentations includes relevant document of pre-tender stage, tender finalization stage and contract administration period. Procurement document closure is necessary before the project closure. Documents in litigation process may be an exception.



Project Closeout begins with a Post-Implementation Review (PIR). The PIR is done after getting feedback from the

Project Team



All-important key stakeholders

Other stakeholders


The feedback taken on the desired project scope / requirements is evaluated and discussed in meetings.

The outcome of the meetings is


Finding the good practices

Identify the Lessons learnt

Deposited them in repository for future use


Closing includes the formal acceptance of the project and the ending thereof. Administrative activities include the archiving of the files and documenting lessons learned.


Please refer to format for  Project Completion Report Blog on TechConsults. (