Project management, as the name suggests, is a process that involves phases and steps taken toward the successful completion of projects. There are many different project management processes, each with its own phases. In this blog post, we will discuss the different phases of the project management process and explain how each phase contributes to the success of a project. We will also provide examples of how these phases can be applied in real-world situations.
So whether you are a project manager just starting out in your career or are looking for a quick go-through on the basics, this blog is all for you!
Phases Of Project Management Process: An Overview
Every project goes through phases during its lifetime. The project management process helps ensure that each phase is completed successfully before moving on to the next. A typical project will go through the following phases:
- Initiation: The project is defined and authorized.
- Planning: The project team is assembled, and a plan is created.
- Execution: The project is executed according to the plan.
- Monitoring and Control: The project progress is monitored and controlled.
- Closing: The project is completed and evaluated.
The project management process is essential for ensuring that a project runs smoothly and successfully. By following these processes, project managers can help ensure that each project phase is completed effectively and efficiently. Let’s learn about these phases in detail:
It is the first phase of the project that sets its course. During this phase, the project is defined and authorized. In this phase, a project team is assembled, and a Project Charter is created. The Project Charter outlines the project scope, objectives, and deliverables. It is the phase where the project manager is appointed, and the project management plan is created.
Let’s take an example of a project to build a new house. The first phase would be to contact an architect to get the house plans drawn up. Once the plans are completed, the construction company is hired, and a Project Charter is created. The Project Charter would include the scope of work, objectives, and deliverables. The Project Manager is appointed, and a Project Management Plan is created. The construction of the house will begin once the Project Management Plan is approved.
Processes Involved In Initiation Phase:
The initiation phase is all about completing seven critical phases:
- Project Charter: It is a document that outlines the project scope, objectives, and deliverables.
- Project Definition: The project definition is a document that defines the project in detail. It helps in setting realistic expectations for the project.
- Project Authorization: Project authorization is the process of approving the project. This step ensures that the project has the necessary resources and approval from the stakeholders.
- Project Scope: The project scope is the process of defining the Project Boundaries. It helps understand what is included in the project and what is not.
- Project Objectives: Project objectives are the goals the project aims to achieve. They should be SMART goals (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, and Time-bound).
- Project Deliverables: Project deliverables are the end products or services that will be delivered at the end of the project.
- Project Team: Project team is the group of people who are responsible for executing the project. The team should have the necessary skills and experience to complete the project.
- Project Stakeholders: Project stakeholders are the people who have a vested interest in the project. They include the Project Sponsor, Project Manager, Project Team, and Project Customers.
The planning phase is the second phase of the project management process. The project manager creates a detailed plan outlining the tasks that need to be completed to achieve the project’s goals. This plan is then used to guide the execution of the project.
The planning phase includes several essential activities, such as creating a project schedule, identifying risks and potential problems, and creating a budget. This phase also provides for developing Project Management Plans (PMPs), which offer guidance on managing the project.
After the planning phase, the project manager will clearly understand what needs to be done to successfully complete the project.
For instance, if you’re managing a website design project, the planning phase would involve:
- Creating a timeline for the project.
- Identifying the tasks to be completed.
- Assigning roles to team members.
Processes Involved In Planning Phase:
There are five primary processes involved in the planning phase, taking it towards profitability:
- Defining Project Scope: The first step in the planning phase is to define the project scope. This involves identifying the project’s goals and objectives and the specific deliverables that need to be delivered.
- Developing Project Schedule: The next step is to develop a project schedule. This schedule outlines the tasks that need to be completed and the order in which they need to be completed.
- Identifying Risks and Issues: Another essential activity in the planning phase is identifying risks and potential problems that could impact the project. This includes identifying external factors that could affect the project, such as changes in the political environment or the economy.
- Creating Project Budget: The final step in the planning phase is to create a project budget. This budget outlines the costs associated with the project and ensures enough funding is available to complete the project.
- Communicating Project Plans to Stakeholders: Once the project plans are complete, they must be communicated to the project’s stakeholders. This includes the project’s sponsors, senior management, and other individuals who have a vested interest in the project’s success.
The primary aim of the planning phase is to create a detailed plan that will guide the execution of the project. This phase ensures that all of the necessary tasks are completed and that risks are identified and mitigated.
The executing phase is the third phase of the project management process. In this phase, the project manager and team execute the tasks outlined in the project plan. This phase includes several essential activities, such as managing project resources, tracking project progress, and communicating with stakeholders.
The executing phase is where the project’s goals are actually achieved. This phase requires close collaboration between the project manager and team and effective communication with stakeholders. It is essential to monitor the project closely during this phase to ensure that it stays on track.
The executing phase works towards completing the project within the defined scope, schedule, and budget. Project managers should focus on maximizing efficiency and minimizing waste during this phase. By effectively managing the project’s resources, the team can ensure that the project is completed on time and within budget.
Processes Involved In Executing Phase:
Five significant processes make the executing phase successful:
- Project Resource Management: Project resource management is the process of managing the project’s resources, such as human resources, equipment, and finances. This includes acquiring, allocating, and managing the project’s resources.
- Project Progress Tracking: Project progress tracking is the process of monitoring the project’s progress and determining its progress to meet its objectives. This includes creating and maintaining project schedules, documenting progress, and identifying any issues or risks.
- Project Communications Management: Project communications management manages communication between the project team and stakeholders. This includes creating and maintaining a communication plan, communicating project updates, and resolving any issues or concerns.
- Project Risk Management: Project risk management identifies, assesses, and manages risks that could impact the project. This includes creating a risk management plan, identifying risks, and developing mitigation strategies.
- Project Quality Management: Project quality management ensures that the project meets its quality objectives. This includes creating a quality plan, conducting quality assurance activities, and monitoring project progress.
The executing phase is a critical part of the project management process. By effectively managing the project’s resources, tracking project progress, and communicating with stakeholders, the project manager needs to ensure the project is completed on time and within budget.
Monitoring And Control Phase
After the project execution phase, comes the monitoring and control phase. During this phase, project progress is monitored and compared against the project plan. Any divergence from the plan is detected, and corrective action is taken to get the project back on track. Project managers also use this phase to communicate project status to stakeholders.
The monitoring and control phase is an important part of the project management process because it helps to make sure that the project is realistic and addresses its objectives.
Project managers should also keep in mind that the monitoring and control phase is not a static process. With each progress in the project, the project manager must adjust the monitoring and control activities to ensure the progress of the project.
In conclusion, the monitoring and control phase is a crucial part of the project management process. By monitoring and controlling the project, project managers can ensure that it stays on track and meets its objectives.
Processes Involved In Monitoring & Control
There are four main processes involved in the monitoring and control phase of project management:
- Monitoring Project Progress: This process involves tracking the project’s progress and comparing it to the project plan. Diversions made in the plan are identified.
- Communicating Project Status: This process involves communicating project status to stakeholders. Project managers should keep stakeholders informed of the project’s progress and any possible changes.
- Identifying Project Issues: This process involves identifying any issues that may arise during the project. Project managers should work with the project team to resolve any issues that may come up.
- Taking Corrective Action: This process involves taking corrective action to get the project back on track. If the project is not going according to the plan, project managers may need to make changes to the project plan or take other corrective action.
The monitoring and control phase is an integral part of the project management process. Hence, it is important to pay close attention to the details.
The project closing phase is the last phase in the project lifecycle. In this phase, all activities related to finishing the project are completed. This includes finalizing all deliverables, wrapping up loose ends, and releasing any resources that are no longer needed. Once the project closing phase is complete, the project is considered officially closed.
The closing phase is important because it ensures that all project objectives have been met and that any final deliverables meet the quality standards set forth in the Project Planning phase. This phase also allows for a smooth transition to the next project or initiative if one is planned.
If you’re working on a project and have reached the Project Closing phase, congratulations! You’ve made it to the finish line. Keep these things in mind as you wrap up your project:
- Make sure all Project objectives have been met.
- Ensure that all final deliverables meet quality standards.
- Free up resources that are unnecessary
- Conduct a post-project review to document lessons learned.
Processes Involved In Closing Phase:
Three major processes are followed in the closing phase:
- Project closeout: Project closeout is the formal process of completing all activities related to finishing the project. This includes finalizing all deliverables, wrapping up loose ends, and releasing any resources that are no longer needed.
- Project audit: A project audit is conducted at the end of the project closing phase to verify that all Project objectives have been met and that any final deliverables meet the quality standards outlined in the project planning phase.
- Project review: A project review is conducted at the end of the project closing phase to document the progress and identify areas for improvement on future projects.
As you can see, there are many different project management processes and phases to ensure the successful completion of a project. By understanding and utilizing these processes and phases, you can increase the chances that the project will be timely completed, within the given budget, and to the required specifications.
If you are looking for more information on project management processes and phases, or if you need help implementing them into your own project, you can consider taking our certificate course. Advanced Certificate in Operations, Supply Chain, and Project Management is everything you need to learn about project management.