The report discusses the meaning and concept of the term Project. It also illustrates the meaning of Project Management along with the stages and strategies that are involved with the same. A real life task has been and related with the methodologies that come under Project Management. The benefits and challenges of the Project Management for the organizations have also been discussed in the report.
A project is defined as an activity or a one-time effort that is complex and non-routine in nature and is bounded by schedule, budget, resources and performance specifications. It is always designed to meet a set of objectives that define the customer needs.
- Project Life Cycle
The life cycle of the project is composed of four phases.
This is the first phase in the project life cycle and includes the task of defining the goals, specifications, activities to be carried out and the responsibilities.
After the definitions are completed, planning of various elements necessary during the project such as budget, schedule, resources, staffing and risks is carried out.
This is the third phase in the project life cycle which includes the practical application of the tasks and gives the outcome in form of status reports, changes, quality checks and forecasts.
The last phase in the project life cycle includes the conduction of training sessions along with preparation of transfer and release documents. An account of the lessons learned during the project timeframe is also made.
Project Management and its methodologies have been greatly put in to practice by the organizations in the present era. Some of the factors that have led to the same are corporate downsizing, increased customer attention, knowledge explosion and minimization of the product life cycle.
- Project Governance and Integrated Management of Projects
Project Management comprises of a lot many activities and the integrated management of the projects includes the following three pillars.
- Strategic Alignment
It is extremely essential for the project to be in a constant alignment with the strategy behind the same. Any changes in the strategy are bound to directly affect the project progress. The strategy for the project should focus upon the immediate customer and solution of the issues associated with the same. Also, project managers must ensure that the strategic management of the project does cover the following:
- Project is linked with the strategy
- Proper allocation of resources and responding to the changes in the strategy in a timely manner
- Missions, goals, objectives, execution, implementation and strategy should be closely linked with each other
The four activities that must be completed by this process are shown below.
Activities of Strategic Alignment and Management
Also, the objectives associated with a project and an organization must be SMART (Specific, Measurable, Assignable, Realistic and Time related) in nature.
Project Portfolio Management
This element of the integrated project management helps in bridging the implementation gap between top and middle level managers and also helps in conflict resolution along with dealing with the organization politics.
It also aids in the accurate resource allocation, risk assessment and improved communication.
The design of the portfolio project management includes the following activities.
Portfolio of the projects is also determined by type, for instance, strategic projects, compliance projects and operational projects.
Project Selection Models and Screening
Portfolio Management System includes the selection models and multi-weighted scoring models for the selection process.
Selection models include financial models such as payback model and Net Present Value method. It also covers non-financial models which are based on the project strategy. Multi-criteria selection includes checklist created on several parameters and question and the multi weighted scoring model.
- Overall Project Management
The integrated project management includes the third activity which looks after all the sub-activities during the project lifecycle.
Challenges of Project Management
The incorrect selection and choice of the Project Manager may adversely affect the management and project progress.
Absence of right resources may lead to existence of outstanding issues and also increased likelihood of the risks.
Benefits of Project Management
It streamlines all the activities that take place during the project life cycle.
The risks that may occur during the project can be handled in a better way and also if such an event occurs then the project management suggests several methods to deal with the same.
The validation between the project progress and the requirements is made on a timely basis.
The project sticks to the schedule as well as to the budget and any deviation is reported timely to deal with the same.
Real Life Example – Project Management
The task of taking down the notes in a class is common and experienced by all the students. The practice of Project Management will streamline the simple task in order to have the better results in place.
The task will have the objective of scoring good grades in the examination by writing down well in the term paper. It will include a number of sub-activities as per the project management guidelines. The project strategy would be to maintain a regular copy of the class notes. The first phase will include defining of the goals and objectives which is as stated earlier. The student and the teacher will be the prime resources along with fellow students. Planning phase will include the schedule of the classes and the role of the teacher in explaining the subject and that of the student to grasp and take notes. Execution phase will include taking down of the notes by the student in a notebook with or without the assistance of the fellow students. The same can be reviewed by the teacher as well. The last phase that is closing will bring out the well-written and correctly described notes for each class attended by the student and will also cover the lessons learned during the same.