The Need For Project Management
Project management is the application of knowledge, skills, tools, and techniques to project activities to meet the project requirements. The processes comprise of initiating, planning, executing, monitoring and controlling, and closing. Managing a project typically includes: identifying requirements, addressing the needs, concerns, and expectations of the stakeholders, balancing the competeing project constraints including but not limited to; scope, quality, schedule, budget, resources, and risk.
Projects are typically authorized as a result of one or more of the following strategic considerations; market demand, strategic opportunity/business need, customer request, technology advance, and/or legal requirements.
The project manager is the person assigned by the performing organization to achieve the project objectives. The role of a project manager is distinct from a functional manager or operations manager. Depending on the organizational structure, a project manager may report to a functional manager. In other cases, a project manager may be one of several project managers who report to a portfolio or program manager that is ultimately responsible for enterprise-wide projects. In this type of structure, the project manager works closely with the portfolio or program manager to achieve the project objectives and to ensure the project plan aligns with the overreaching program plan.
Many of the tools and techniques for managing projects are specific to project management. However, understanding and applying the knowledge, tools, and techniques that are recognized as good practice is not sufficient for effective project management. In addition to any area-specific skills and general management proficiencies required for the project, effective project management requires that the project manager possess the following characteristics; knowledge, performance, and personal effectiveness.
Projects and project management take place in an environment that is broader than that of the project itself. Understanding this broader context helps ensure that work is carried out in alignment with the goals of the enterprise and managed in accordance with the established practice methodologies of the organization. The basic structure of a project as well as other high-level considerations including how projects impact ongoing operational work, the influence of stakeholders beyond the immediate project team, and how organizational structure affects the way the project is staffed, managed, and executed.
The application of knowledge requires the effective management of appropriate processes. A process is a set of interrelated actions and activities performed to achieve a pre-specified product, result, or service. Each process is characterized by its inputs, the tools and techniques that can be applied, and the resulting outputs. The project manager must consider organizational process assets and enterprise environmental factors.
(Project Management Institute, Inc., 2008)