Introduction to Phases of Project Management
A project is a collaborative set of operations involving research or design that is carefully planned to achieve a certain objective. In simple words, a project produces a product or service that is different from the existing one at the end. A project needs to be managed in order to get the desired result. A project and its management undergo a particular procedure to move swiftly by avoiding obstacles of any kind and achieve the predetermined goals. This procedure is called the life cycle of a project. Project management is the application of knowledge, skills, tools, and techniques to project activities to meet the project requirements. It involves initiating, planning, executing and closing of a project.
Top 5 phases of Project Management
Below are the following 5 phases of project management.
1. Project Initiating
The initiating process decides what kind of a project is being taken up and what can be done with it. If it is not taken care of, it is difficult for the project to achieves its objectives. It is important to understand the needs of the business pertaining to the project, and all the measures are taken up to get the best out of it. Any deficiencies should be reported and immediately fixed. A few areas should be taken into account while initiating a project. Project Initiation documents can be prepared to document these areas. Project Initiation documents are a series of meticulously connected documents used to plan the project and its order of duration in a meticulous manner.
- Project Proposal
- Project Scope
- Breakdown Structure of the Product
- Breakdown Structure of the Work
- Assignment of the Responsibility
- Tentative Project Schedule
- Analysis of Business Needs and Project Measures
- Review of the Ongoing Project
- Financial Analysis of the Project and its Budgeting
- Stakeholder Analysis
- Project Charter
- Analysis of strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats to the business
2. Project Planning
After the initiation stage, the project is planned to set all the details in order. The main idea is to plan all the aspects of a project and the available resources so that the work to be done can be decided upon and the risk involved can be managed. As with the Initiation stage, a failure to properly plan immensely reduces the project’s chances of being successful. Project planning generally consists of-
- The methodology of project management should be determined;
- Scope of the project should be developed;
- The project team needs to be selected;
- Breaking down product and work structure as per deliverables;
- Identifying project activities to achieve all the project goals and arranging them according to their sequence;
- Estimating project resource requirements;
- Estimating the project duration and its cost;
- Work schedule development;
- Budgeting of the project;
- Risk management;
- Developing measures to test quality;
- Formal work approval.
3. Project Executing
Execution happens as per the terms and conditions decided in the planning stage. This process ensures that the project planning stage has done justice. In this phase, proper management of all the resources present at one’s disposal takes place, along with financial analysis and budgeting. The output of this phase is the final outcome.
- Project Documentation: Possessing physical documents of everything required for efficient execution of a project helps in making a project successful. It is important to have physical documentation of the project schedule in hand as it helps us to manage the project duration, its scope, effectiveness, and pace. With all the documents in hand, it is easy to check if a project is being correctly implemented or not. This stage, throughout the course of a project, provides a physical reference in case one needs to verify his/her work. In the majority of cases, project documentation is the best way to oversee different project management phases. If followed the way it should be, then it can prove pivotal in the success of a project.
4. Project Monitoring and Controlling
The monitoring and controlling phase deals with the supervision of the execution of the project so that all possible hindrances and hassles can be identified with time in hand and corrective measures can be taken. Most importantly, this involves regular tracking of the project and its procedures on a regular basis to see if anyone is deviating from the project schedule or violating its set terms and conditions. It involves:
- The project schedule needs to be measured;
- The project variables should be measured;
- Corrective measures should be taken to address all the potential hindrances involved in a project;
- Only approved changes should be implemented as improper changes made can affect the entire project.
5. Project Closing
The Closing process involves formally accepting the project and, therefore, marks its ending. Storing the files and noting down lessons from the project is the focus of this stage.
This phase consists of:
- Contract closure: Each of the contracts applicable to the project needs to be completed, settled and closed.
- Project close: All the project activities are needed to be finalized, and then the project needs to be closed.
This phase also likes the review of the project after its implementation. It consists of reviewing the experiences of all the team members irrespective of them being good or bad.
This has been a guide to Phases of Project Management. Here we have discussed the basic concept, Different Phases of Project Management, with detailed explanation. You can also go through our other suggested articles to learn more –