Project management is the discipline of planning, organizing, motivating, and controlling resources to achieve specific goals. A project is a temporary endeavor with a defined beginning and end (usually time-constrained, and often constrained by funding or deliverables) undertaken to meet unique goals and objectives, typically to bring about beneficial change or added value. The primary challenge of project management is to achieve all of the project goals and objectives while honoring the preconceived constraints. The primary constraints are scope, time, quality and budget. The secondary —and more ambitious— challenge is to optimize the allocation of necessary inputs and integrate them to meet pre-defined objectives.
The initiating processes determine the nature and scope of the project. The initiating stage should include a plan that encompasses the following areas: * analyzing the business needs/requirements in measurable goals * reviewing of the current operations
* financial analysis of the costs and benefits including a budget * stakeholder analysis, including users, and support personnel for the project * project charter including costs, tasks, deliverables, and schedule
Planning and design
The main purpose is to plan time, cost and resources adequately to estimate the work needed and to effectively manage risk during project execution. Project planning generally consists of
* determining how to plan (e.g. by level of detail or rolling wave); * developing the scope statement
* selecting the planning team;
* identifying deliverables and creating the work breakdown structure; * identifying the activities needed to complete those deliverables and networking the activities in their logical sequence; * estimating the resource requirements for the activities; * estimating time and cost for activities;
* developing the schedule;
* developing the budget;
* risk planning;
* Gaining formal approval to begin work.
Executing consists of the processes used to complete the work defined in the project plan to accomplish the project's requirements. Execution process involves coordinating people and resources, as well as integrating and performing the activities of the project in accordance with the project management plan. The deliverables are produced as outputs from the processes performed as defined in the project management plan and other frameworks that might be applicable to the type of project at hand. Execution process group include:
* Direct and Manage Project execution
* Quality Assurance of deliverables
* Acquire, Develop and Manage Project team
* Distribute Information
* Manage stakeholder expectations
* Conduct Procurement
Monitoring and controlling
Monitoring and controlling consists of those processes performed to observe project execution so that potential problems can be identified in a timely manner and corrective action can be taken, when necessary, to control the execution of the project. The key benefit is that project performance is observed and measured regularly to identify variances from the project management plan. Monitoring and controlling includes:
* Measuring the ongoing project activities ('where we are'); * Monitoring the project variables (cost, effort, scope, etc.) against the project management plan and the project performance baseline (where we should be); * Identify corrective actions to address issues and risks properly (How can we get on track again); * Influencing the factors that could circumvent integrated change control so only approved changes are implemented. In multi-phase projects, the monitoring and control process also provides feedback between project phases, in order to implement corrective or preventive actions to bring the project into compliance with the project management plan. Project maintenance is an...