Jo Anne Bishop
Project Planning and Management
Dr. Caroline Howard
October 14, 2012
Effective project management is crucial to the success of any project regardless of the size or complexity. Project management experts Karen Tate and Paula Martin said, “Trying to manage a project without project management is like trying to play football without a game plan” (Martin & Tate, 2001, pg 9). Project managers have a difficult job. Their jobs are often times made more difficult by the dynamic environment in which they must work. Project managers must take a project through the entire project management life-cycle, ...view middle of the document...
The second phase, the project planning phase, includes defining the objectives for the project. The third phase is the execution phase of the project. The fourth phase, the monitoring phase includes monitoring and making necessary adjustments. The final phase is the closing phase. In this phase, the products are delivered and the project manager completes all final documentation tasks. These five phases allows the project manager to ensure that each step of the project supports the customer requirement and is completed in a timely manner.
The initiation phase of project management is the official start of a project. During this phase customer requirements are reviewed and project objectives are determined. The project manager and project stakeholders will meet during this phase to develop the project charter and project scope. Some of the items that will be identified during this phase are the budget, the overall timeline for the project and the measures for successful completion for each of the objectives. It is important for these to be clearly identified during the initiation phase so that the project manager and stakeholders have the same understanding of the ultimate goals for the project.
During this phase of the project, the project manager will develop the specifics for the project. The project team is formally established during this phase. This phase oftentimes can be very time consuming; project managers should never rush through the planning phase as many very important aspects of the project can be overlooked if this phase is not carefully and conscientiously completed. Small errors in the planning phase can snowball into sometimes insurmountable issues in the execution phase. It is during the planning phase where the broad tasks are identified. Once the tasks are identified, schedules, budgets, risk analysis, contingency plans and work breakdown structures can be developed. The importance of this phase cannot be overstated. When this phase is complete, the project manager will schedule and conduct the official kick off meeting to communicate and review the project with the appropriate personnel (Barkley, 2006, pg 238).
The execution phase, sometimes called the implementation phase, is when the team begins work on developing the deliverables. Depending on the complexity of the project, this phase can last weeks or years. During the implementation phase, the deliverables are produced using the plans that were created in phase two. The project manager must spend a great deal of time ensuring that all elements of the project are being completed as planned. Each team should be executing their assigned tasks according to the schedule. Once each of the deliverables are completed and checked for quality, they can then be presented to the customer for acceptance.
This phase is often thought of as a part of the execution phase. It is...