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Planning and Managing the Project

Creating a Project Plan, Process of project management, Project Management Tips, Communicate constantly, Be proactive, Don't be afraid to ask for help

Planning and Managing the Project

A project plan describes how an undertaking will be executed and controlled. Risk management, resource management, and communication, as well as the baselines for scope, cost, and schedule are all addressed in the plan. Planning software helps project managers produce detailed and comprehensive plans. Known as a project management plan or a project plan, this document gives answers to who, what, where, when, why, and how questions about a project. It's more than just a Gantt chart with tasks and deadlines. Planned execution and control of project phases are the objectives of a project plan. Documents that make up a project plan include those listed below:
  • An overview of the project is described in the project charter. In addition to its goals, objectives, constraints, and stakeholders, it discusses the reasons for developing the project.
  • Statement of work - When you prepare a statement of work (SOW), you outline the scope, schedule, deliverables, milestones, and tasks for your project.
  • The work breakdown structure outlines the phases, subprojects, deliverables, and work packages that will be needed to complete the project.
  • Several sections make up the project plan document. These sections include stakeholder management, quality management, scope management, resource management, risk evaluation, schedule management, and change management.

Creating a Project Plan

A project plan is vital to the success of any project. Without a robust project management tool, project issues such as missed deadlines and scope creep are more likely to occur. It may be time-consuming to write a project plan at first, but it will pay off over the course of the project. Five basic steps can be summed up in a project plan:
  • Your project's scope, quality baseline, milestones, deliverables, stakeholders, success criteria and requirements should be written down. Project charters, work breakdown structures (WBSs), and statements of work (SOWs) should be drafted.
  • Risks should be identified and assigned to your team members who will be performing the required tasks and monitoring the associated risks.
  • Your team members are responsible for assigning roles and responsibilities (customers, stakeholders, teams, ad hoc attendees, etc.).
  • List the materials, salaries, equipment, and personnel required to complete the project, then estimate the costs.
  • Processes and forms should be developed to manage change.
  • Ensure that guiding documents including a communication plan, schedule, budget, etc., are created.
According to the steps we outlined above, each project phase corresponds to one of the five steps, which we will describe in the next section.

Project Life Cycles are divided into five phases.

The complexity of any project, no matter how big or small, cannot be underestimated. The best way to structure your project is to break it down into phases. As a result, you'll have an idea of what all the necessary inclusions are. The Project Management Institute (PMI) has identified five general phases of a project in its Project Management Book of Knowledge (PMBOK):
  • Initiation - A project is started by creating a business case, whose goals and objectives are defined, and by determining the project's practicality through a feasibility study.
  • Planning - An organization's project management methodology is determined during the project planning phase through the creation of a work breakdown structure (WBS). A schedule for the project identifies milestones and task dependencies, along with the cost, quality, and resources involved. The project plan is the most important deliverable at this stage.
  • Execution - Project deliverables must be completed during this phase. The kick-off meeting usually occurs at the start of this phase, followed by team meetings and status reports throughout the project.
  • Monitoring and controlling - After the execution phase, monitoring is conducted. Monitoring the project's progress and performance is essential to verifying that progress is being made.
  • Closure - When the final deliverable is received by the stakeholder, the project is concluded. A contract is signed, resources are released, and assessments of success and failure are ideally conducted.

Managing the Project

New project managers may find project management daunting. Taking on even a small project can be stressful. When a project is broken down into manageable tasks and phases, and when proven project management practices are followed, it can be managed successfully.

Process of project management

Project management is divided into five process groups. These include:
  • Project initiation - After a project has been approved, it becomes an idea. A charter for the project is then developed during this phase.
  • Project planning - The main purpose of this phase is to plan the complete work of the project, including all the tasks, how they will be accomplished, when they will be completed, who will do them, and how you will monitor and control them. This category encompasses the majority of project management processes. A sound planning process is a key ingredient for a successful project, according to most project managers.
  • Project execution - Execution is when the actual work gets done. This will also include managing the project team, communications, and quality.
  • Project monitoring and controlling - It includes all the steps for ensuring that the project follows the plan, which overlaps the other phases. Among those processes are budgeting, scheduling, and scoping.
  • Project closure - The closure process is implemented in this phase after the project has met its objectives (or failed to meet them) and is complete.

Project Management Tips

Here are three additional tips to help you manage projects more effectively and improve your project management skills.

Communicate constantly

It's said that a project manager communicates 90% of their work. Regular communications in the project provide a wealth of benefits. For example:
  • Risk identification and early detection
  • Staying engaged is the key
  • Conflicts and rework can be reduced
  • Achieving alignment between expectations and understandings
If your team is idle, it can lead to an idle individual thinking they're still waiting for someone else to finish what they've already started. The person is continuing to work on an aspect of the design which is no longer necessary due to a change in the scope. Meetings should be scheduled regularly with everyone who works on or directly impacts the project. By doing so, you will be able to share updates and discuss problems in real time. It is also important to inform all stakeholders about the progress of the project on a regular basis. The earliest possible communication should be made with everyone involved if an issue arises or something goes wrong. You don't want people to believe you're hiding a problem if you delay raising it - if you wait too long, it can be more difficult to resolve, and it could affect your standing within the organization.

Be proactive

The best-laid plans rarely work out perfectly, especially when managing projects. Be as proactive as possible so that changes to the project have the least impact. Managing risks is an important component of this. Assess risks early on and review them on a regular basis to determine if they have changed or if any new ones have arisen. Identifying risks is the first step to mitigating their chances of occurring, and deciding what to do if and when it does happen. Prepare for the worst case scenario by considering what might go wrong. If you don’t reach your ‘Plan B,’ what will you do? ’’ The team should also be in the know about milestones and deliverables that are coming up (again, communication is essential). Do not be surprised when a deliverable is due the day before it is due and it will not be ready for two weeks.

Don't be afraid to ask for help

Even though it may seem like it, a project manager isn't solely responsible for its success. Especially when you're new to your role as a project manager, you need the support and expertise of others. Do not be afraid to escalate problems to your sponsor, and make sure that he or she is kept informed. You may not be able to find a replacement for a key resource you just lost easily and quickly if you lost the sponsor's support. Recruiting people who are competent and reliable is the most important thing you can do. Make the most of subject matter experts with previous experience in projects similar to yours.

Asking questions or getting advice is not a sign of weakness. You might wish to research past similar projects in your organization's lessons learned database to learn about best practices, tips, and advice. Alternatively, you can talk to other project managers that have a deeper understanding of a certain area. Using project management templates, tools, and software, you can manage, control, and report on your projects. Time is saved, visibility is increased, and issues are flagged when they arise.
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Ankur Choudhary is India's first professional pharmaceutical blogger, author and founder of Pharmaceutical Guidelines, a widely-read pharmaceutical blog since 2008. Sign-up for the free email updates for your daily dose of pharmaceutical tips.
.moc.enilediugamrahp@ofni :liamENeed Help: Ask Question


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