Project Management Overview

Project Management Overview

What is Project Management?

Project management is the application of processes, methods, knowledge, skills and experience to achieve the project objectives.

A project is a unique, transient endeavour, undertaken to achieve planned objectives, which could be defined in terms of outputs, outcomes or benefits. A project is usually deemed to be a success if it achieves the objectives according to their acceptance criteria, within an agreed timescale and budget.

The core components of project management are:

  • defining the reason why a project is necessary;
  • capturing project requirements, specifying the quality of the deliverables, estimating resources and timescales;
  • preparing a business case to justify the investment;
  • securing corporate agreement and funding;
  • developing and implementing a management plan for the project;
  • leading and motivating the project delivery team;
  • managing the risks, issues and changes on the project;
  • monitoring progress against plan;
  • managing the project budget;
  • maintaining communications with stakeholders and the project organisation;
  • provider management;
  • closing the project in a controlled fashion when appropriate.

Project management is no small task. It has a definite beginning and end, and is not a continuous process. Project management uses various tools to measure progress and track project tasks. Projects need ad-hoc resources, as opposed to businesses that have dedicated full-time positions.

Project management methodologies consist of four to five process groups, and a control system. Regardless of the methodology or terminology used, project management uses the same basic processes. Process groups typically include:

  1. Initiation.
  2. Planning and Design.
  3. Execution.
  4. Monitoring and Controlling.
  5. Closing.

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Kate Hamblin

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