Project Management is an approach to manage and control project initiatives of an organization. Different projects are handled in different ways, but they all follow a well disciplined approach accompanied with general management skills. The success of any project always depends on how well it was managed. Therefore, it becomes very important to have knowledge on key elements of project in order to manage it more efficiently.
Project Management Process that broadly involves of five steps. They are:
Initiation: In this stage, ideas of the team identifying the needs of a project are formally accepted. Project Manager identification, Scope Document development, Stating of Project Process and Formulation of Project Team are the major deliverables of this stage.
An approved scope document is an agreement between the project owner and project organization. A scope document that includes project objective, project requirements, project deliverables, significant risks, constraints and cost takes the project one step ahead towards being successful.
Planning: Effective planning is very critical to any project’s success and more so for small projects. It is an ongoing process and never ends during the lifetime of a project. Resources required, Project Plan, Quality Management Plan, Risk Management Plan and Communication Plan are the major deliverables of this stage.
Execution: Putting Project Plan into action is nothing but Project execution. It requires co-ordination among the team members and resources. Visible deliverables of each milestone and the performance reports are the outcome of an excellent project execution.
Controlling: The performance reports derived at execution stage states whether there is any deviation from the actual plan. It is at the controlling stage that corrective action is taken if any such deviation is observed. Like Planning, Controlling is also an ongoing process that ends only after successful closure of a project.
Closure: It is formal acceptance of the project’s final outcome. It consists of documenting the project results and lessons learned.
All of the above tasks to be done require time, expertise knowledge and skills. Therefore, any project whether small or big has some specialized persons handling them and they are called Project Managers. A project Manager is responsible for the five steps stated above that is Initiation, Planning, Execution, Controlling and Closure.