Project Management is the business process of creating a unique product, service or result. A project is a finite endeavor having specific start and completion dates undertaken to create a quantifiable deliverable. Projects undergo progressive elaboration by developing in steps and predictable increments that are tied to benchmarks, milestones and completion dates.
This finite characteristic of projects stands in sharp contrast to processes, or operations, which are permanent or semi-permanent functional work to repetitively produce the same product or service. In practice, the management of these two systems is often found to be quite different, and as such requires the development of distinct technical skills and the adoption of a separate management philosophy.
The primary challenge of Project Management is to achieve all of the goals of the project charter while adhering to three out of the four classic project constraints sometimes referred to as the “triple constraints.” The four constraints are defined as scope, time, cost and quality.
The more ambitious goal of Project Management Professional is to carry the project through the entire Project Management life cycle. The Project Management lifecycle consists of five phases called Project Management Process Groups: Project Initiation, Project Planning, Project Execution, Project Monitoring and Control and Project Closeout.
Each Project Management Process Group utilizes nine Knowledge Areas which are: integration management, scope management, time management, cost management, quality management, human resource management, communications management, risk management and procurement management.
Project management is composed of several different types of activities such as:
1. Analysis and design of objectives and events
2. Planning the work according to the objectives
3. Assessing and controlling risk (or Risk Management)
4. Estimating resources
5. Allocation of resources
6. Organizing the work
7. Acquiring human and material resources
8. Assigning tasks
9. Directing activities
10. Controlling project execution
11. Tracking and reporting progress (Management information system)
12. Analyzing the results based on the facts achieved
13. Defining the products of the project
14. Forecasting future trends in the project
15. Quality Management
16. Issues management
17. Issue solving
18. Defect prevention
19. Identifying, managing & controlling changes
20. Project closure (and project debrief)
21. Communicating to stakeholders
22. Increasing / decreasing a company’s workers