Software Project Team Roles and Responsibilities

Successful development projects take careful planning, a talented team and collaboration of a project’s team members, both internal and external (client representatives). Software projects only move forward when the key team members are in place.

Project Manager

Project manager duties:

  • Develop a project plan
  • Manage deliverables according to the plan
  • Recruit project staff
  • Lead and manage the project team
  • Determine the methodology used on the project
  • Establish a project schedule and determine each phase
  • Assign tasks to project team members
  • Provide regular updates to upper management

Functional manager:

  • Assign project
  • Discuss how well person is doing that work and if person wants to continue doing it (providing opportunities for growth)
  • Gather information from other PMs to write the evaluation
  • Work with employee to set and coach on career goals

Operational Manager

An operations manager is a senior role which involves overseeing the production of goods and/or provision of services.

It’s an operations manager’s job to make sure an organization is running as well as it possibly can, with a smooth efficient service that meets the expectations and needs of customers and clients.

Main Job Tasks and Responsibilities

  • Coordination and Supervision — Coordinate, manage and monitor the workings of various departments in the organization.
  • Financial — Review financial statements and data. Utilize financial data to improve profitability. Prepare and control operational budgets. Control inventory. Plan effective strategies for the financial well-being of the company.
  • Best Practices — Improve processes and policies in support of organizational goals. Formulate and implement departmental and organizational policies and procedures to maximize output. Monitor adherence to rules, regulations and procedures.
  • Human Resources — Plan the use of human resources. Organize recruitment and placement of required staff. Establish organizational structures. Delegate tasks and accountabilities. Establish work schedules. Supervise staff. Monitor and evaluate performance.
  • Production — Coordinate and monitor the work of various departments involved in production, warehousing, pricing and distribution of goods. Monitor performance and implement improvements. Ensure quality of products. Manage quality and quantity of employee productivity. Manage maintenance of equipment and machinery. Provide technical support where necessary.
  • Communication — Monitor, manage and improve the efficiency of support services such as IT, HR, Accounts and Finance. Facilitate coordination and communication between support functions.
  • Sales and Marketing and Customer Service — Manage customer support. Plan and support sales and marketing activities.
  • Strategic Input — Liaison with top management. Assist in the development of strategic plans for operational activity. Implement and manage operational plans.

·Planning and controlling change.

  • Managing quality assurance programs.
  • Researching new technologies and alternative methods of efficiency.
  • Setting and reviewing budgets and managing cost.
  • Overseeing inventory, distribution of goods and facility layout.


The Analyst is responsible for ensuring that the requirements of the business clients are captured and documented correctly before a solution is developed and implemented. In some companies, this person might be called a Business Analyst, Business Systems Analyst, Systems Analyst or Requirements Analyst.

Business Analyst

Business analyst duties:

  • Assist in defining the project
  • Gather requirements from business units or users
  • Document technical and business requirements
  • Verify that project deliverables meet the requirements
  • Test solutions to validate objectives

QA Manager

The QA role works with the Functional Analyst (FA) and the Solutions Architect (SA) to convert the requirements and design documents into a set of testing cases and scripts, which can be used to verify that the system meets the client needs. This collection of test cases and scripts are collectively referred to as a test plan. The test plan document itself is often simple providing an overview of each of the test cases. The testing cases and scripts are also used to validate that there are no unexplained errors in the system.

The test plan is approved by the Subject Matter Experts (SMEs) and represents the criteria to reach a project closing. If the test cases and scripts in the test plan are the agreed upon acceptance criteria for a project then all that is necessary is for project closure is to demonstrate that all of the testing cases and scripts have been executed successfully with passing results.

A test case is a general-purpose statement that maps to one or more requirements and design points. It is the overall item being tested. It may be a specific usability feature, or a technical feature that was supposed to be implemented as a part of the project.

Test scripts fit into the test cases by validating that case. Test scripts are step-by-step instructions on what to do, what to look for, and what should happen. While the test cases can be created with nearly no input from the architecture or design, the test scripts are specific to how the problem was solved by the software development team and therefore they require an understanding of not only the requirements, but also the architecture, design, and detailed design.

Change Control Board/change manager

The Change Control Board is usually made up of a group of decision makers authorized to accept changes to the projects requirements, budget, and timelines. This organization would be helpful if the project directly impacted a number of functional areas and the sponsor wanted to share the scope change authority with this broader group. The details of the Change Control Board and the processes they follow are defined in the project management processes.


This is the people (or groups) that are the direct beneficiaries of a project or service. They are the people for whom the project is being undertaken. (Indirect beneficiaries are probably stakeholders.) These might also be called “customers”, but if they are internal to the company, LifecycleStep refers to them generically as clients. If they are outside your company, they would be referred to as “customers”.

Client Project Manager

If the project is large enough, the business client may have a primary contact that is designated as a comparable project manager for work on the client side. The IT project manager would have overall responsibility for the IT solution. However, there may be projects on the client side that are also needed to support the initiative, and the client project manager would be responsible for those. The IT project manager and the client project manager would be peers who work together to build and implement the complete solution.

Solution team/software architect

  • define, document, and communicate it
  • make sure everyone is using it, and using it correctly
  • make sure that it comes out in stages in a timely way so that the overall organization can make progress before it’s complete
  • make sure the software and system architectures are in synchronization
  • act as the emissary of the architecture
  • make sure management understands it (to the detail necessary)
  • make sure the right modeling is being done, to know that qualities like performance are going to be met
  • give input as needed to issues like tool and environment selection
  • identify and interact with stakeholders to make sure their needs are being met
  • make sure that the architecture is not only the right one for operations, but also for deployment and sustainment
  • resolve disputes and make tradeoffs
  • resolve technical problems
  • maintain morale, both within the architecture group, and externally as well. The latter is done by providing a sound design, when needed, and providing good presentations and materials to let everyone know the organization is on the right track.
  • understand and plan for evolutionary paths
  • plan for new technology insertion
  • manage risk identification and risk mitigation strategies associated with the architecture

Process Analyst:

The process analyst leads and coordinates business use-case modeling by outlining and delimiting the organization being modeled; for example, establishing what business actors and business use cases exist and how they interact. The business process analyst is responsible for the business architecture. He/she is shown below as responsible for Artifact: Business Object Model because of this overall architectural responsibility, even though Role: Business Designer creates and maintains it.

Main Duties

Commonly, the main duties of this role include:

Duties :

  • Assess the situation of the target organization where the project’s end-product will be deployed.
  • Understand customer and user requirements, their strategies, and their goals.
  • Facilitate modeling of the target organization.
  • Discuss and facilitate a business engineering effort, if needed.
  • Perform a cost/benefit analysis for any suggested changes in the target organization.
  • Discuss and support those who market and sell the end-product of the project.

Test analyst/Tester/test Engineer

The Test Analyst role is responsible for initially identifying and subsequently defining the required tests, monitoring the test coverage and evaluating the overall quality experienced when testing the Target Test Items. This role also involves specifying the required Test Data and evaluating the outcome of the testing conducted in each test cycle. Sometimes this role is also referred to as the Test Designer, or considered part of the Tester role. This role is responsible for:

  • Identifying the Target Test Items to be evaluated by the test effort
  • Defining the appropriate tests required and any associated Test Data
  • Gathering and managing the Test Data
  • Evaluating the outcome of each test cycle

Software Architecture:

The basic objectives of a solution architect could be as following.

* Be mindful of the scope of the project

* Across the SAP modules, he would do the followings.
— Understand client’s requirements and its business viabilities
— Determine the gaps between requirements and SAP functionalities and define workable solutions to bridge the gaps
— Design the solutions in detail with the help from the consultants and business
— Plan the closure of the solutions and see through the implementation of the solutions

Database Administrator

A Database Administrator is a specialist that models, designs and creates the databases and tables used by a software solution. This role combines Data Administrator (logical) and DBA (physical).

The designer is responsible for understanding the business requirements and designing a solution that will meet the business needs. There are many potential solutions that will meet the client’s needs. The designer determines the best approach. A designer typically needs to understand how technology can be used to create this optimum solution for the client. The designer determines the overall model and framework for the solution, down to the level of designing screens, reports, programs and other components. They also determine the data needs. The work of the designer is then handed off to the programmers and other people who will construct the solution based on the design specifications.


The Developer is responsible for the actual building of the solution. For more information on this role,

Project Team

The project team consists of the full-time and part-time resources assigned to work on the deliverables of the project. This includes the analysts, designers, programmers, etc. They are responsible for:

  • Understanding the work to be completed
  • Planning the assigned activities in more detail if needed
  • Completing assigned work within the budget, timeline and quality expectations
  • Informing the project manager of issues, scope changes, risk and quality concerns
  • Proactively communicating status and managing expectations

The project team can consist of staff within one functional organization, or it can consist of members from many different functional organizations. A cross-functional team has members from multiple organizations. Having a cross-functional team is usually a sign that your organization is utilizing matrix management.

Sponsor (Executive Sponsor and Project Sponsor)

This is the person who has ultimate authority over the project. The Executive Sponsor provides project funding, resolves issues and scope changes, approves major deliverables and provides high-level direction. They also champion the project within their organization. Depending on the project and the organizational level of the Executive Sponsor, they may delegate day-to-day tactical management to a Project Sponsor. If assigned, the Project Sponsor represents the Executive Sponsor on a day-to-day basis and makes most of the decisions requiring sponsor approval. If the decision is large enough, the Project Sponsor will take it to the Executive Sponsor for resolution.


These are the specific people or groups who have a stake, or an interest, in the outcome of the project. Normally stakeholders are from within the company, and could include internal clients, management, employees, administrators, etc. A project may also have external stakeholders, including suppliers, investors, community groups and government organizations.

Steering Committee

A Steering Committee is a group of high-level stakeholders who are responsible for providing guidance on overall strategic direction. They do not take the place of a Sponsor, but help to spread the strategic input and buy-in to a larger portion of the organization. The Steering Committee is usually made up of organizational peers and is a combination of direct clients and indirect stakeholders. Some members on the Steering Committee may also sit on the Change Control Board.

Subject Matter Expert

A Subject Matter Expert (SME) has superior (expert) knowledge of a discipline, technology, product, business process or entire business area.

SME Duties:

  • Review test cases for integration testing associated with the inventory management system.
  • Help validate user requirements for payroll application.
  • Conduct code walkthrough for accounts payable interface to legacy system.
  • Review requirements traceability matrix, and ensure that requirements have coverage.
  • Help refine and determine feasibility, correctness, and completeness of end-user’s requirement.
  • Provide input for the design and construction of test cases and business scenarios.
  • Help answer questions associated with the design of the status quo application, its features, and its capabilities.
  • Validate executed test results.

Suppliers / Vendors

Suppliers and vendors are third party companies or specific people that work for third parties. They may be subcontractors who are working under your direction, or they may be supplying material, equipment, hardware, software or supplies to your project. Depending on their role, they may need to be identified on your organization chart. For instance, if you are partnering with a supplier to develop your requirements, you probably want them on your organization chart. On the other hand, if the vendor is supplying a common piece of hardware, you probably would not consider them a part of the team.


The Tester ensures that the solution meets the business requirements and that it is free of errors and defects.


These are the people who will actually use the deliverables of the project. These people may also be involved heavily in the project in activities such as defining business requirements. In other cases, they may not get involved until the testing process. Sometimes you want to specifically identify the user organization or the specific users of the solution and assign a formal set of responsibilities to them, like developing use cases or user scenarios based on the needs of the business requirements.

Thank you to Faryaha Sharmin for gathering the information

1) Roles in Agile Software Development Teams By Yael Dubinsky & Orit Hazzan

2) Succeeding with Agile: Software Development Using Scrum 1st Edition by Mike Cohn (Author)

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