What does a mandate statement include?

A mandate statement outlines what an organization must do according to its own by-laws and the rules of higher authorities. Mandate statements include both formal restrictions (for instance, requirements of law) and informal restrictions.


Rather than a mission statement, which outlines an organization’s purpose, or a vision statement, which describes an ideal outcome, a mandate statement is a concise explanation of what an organization must do to continue existing.


Once a group’s leaders examine their boundaries and lay out what must be done, they can formulate a mandate statement that meets the needs of the organization.

Formal Mandates

Formal mandates are those laid out by applicable laws or organization charters. For instance, a university might be mandated by its charter to enroll and educate students, hire, train and manage staff, seek accreditation, and engage with the surrounding community.

Informal Mandates

Informal mandates are not enforced by a governing body; instead, they may include cultural norms and traditions that people in an organization must consider in the course of their work.

Formulating a Mandate Statement

Mandate statements should start with a verb and clearly describe what an organization must do. The statement should encompass all of an organization’s mandates.


Health Canada: Community Action Resources: How to Plan

Passia.org: The Mandate, the Vision and the Mission

BVVS Polytechnic: Mandate Statement

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