Does the thought of managing a corporate project sound like something out of a nightmare? Nobody can blame you! With all of the individual components that must work together to achieve a project’s outcomes, and the need for these to all be managed at the same time, project management certainly isn’t for the faint-hearted. So, what are project management processes? How do they facilitate the successful completion of a project? Let’s find out:
Life Cycle Of A Project
Simply defined, a project management process is an activity falling within one of the five main ‘phases’ or ‘stages’ of a project. These five phases combined make up the project life cycle.
Before a project can get on track, it needs to be sold to the people who will be paying for it. This is known as the initiation process, and it involves the development of two documents:
Business case: This document justifies the need for the project and lays out the potential return on investment.
Feasibility study: This document lays out the project’s goals, timelines, costs, and resources required.
Process number two is all about planning the project for success and is arguably the most difficult part of any project. Here project managers have to assemble the team they’ll need, and conceptualise the project from start to finish – including all other aspects that need to be catered to. A project management plan should include:
Tasks: detail all of the tasks required at every stage of the project.
Schedule: show the duration of tasks and timeframes for each project process.
Cost: formulate a budget by assessing all of the costs involved.
Procurement: choose which activities will be outsourced, and who to outsource to.
Risks: detail possible project risks and possible solutions that can be implemented.
Staff: determine all roles and responsibilities for project team members.
Once everything has been planned and all project aspects are covered, it’s time to start the project. There are two processes which must take place during the execution phase:
Execute the plan: launch the project plan once the entire team understands what is required of them.
Administrate: manage and monitor the team’s tasks, as well as any contracts secured in the project.
A project might be in full swing, but that doesn’t mean project managers can sit back and let the team finish things off. All facets of the project must be closely monitored and managed when required. These processes are required:
Scope: monitor the project’s scope and control changes as they arise.
Reporting: ensure you have a metric to measure the project’s progress by.
Quality: to make sure that the required quality is being met across all processes.
Cost: ensuring that the project does not go off-budget.
Schedule: keep track of delays and adjust the project to ensure on-time completion.
To close things off, once the project has come to an end, project managers should action these final two processes.
Scope: assess whether the project deliverables have been completed as stipulated in the plan.
Administration: close off any admin activities outstanding, including archiving paperwork, paying sub-contractors, etc.
Anyone that’s looked into project management will know that it takes a great deal of time and effort to ensure a project runs smoothly and achieves what it needs to. This is why getting the best qualification backing is critical for any new project manager entering the industry. If this is you, check out our accredited Project Management course and launch your project management career in style!
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