Project Management Aspects to be considered

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By Beti Levensteinas

A project starts when an idea is created, when it has a scope of work and a framework. Some critical aspects to be taken in account in a project are time, scope, quality, cost. Resources, cost, time, scope have to be defined for managing a project.

Management is the technique of understanding the problems, needs and controlling the use of resources, cost, time, scope and quality.
When managing a project, one has to apply knowledge, skills, tools and techniques to project activities in order to meet stakeholder needs and expectations about a project. Stakeholder needs are the stated part of the project while stakeholder expectations are unstated part of the project.
For that purpose, a good idea is engaging stakeholders early in the project, ideally during the planning stage so that everyone can get a common understanding of the scope, the timing, the budget and the resource demands.

Project has to be completed on time and within budget without compromising quality.Companies use project management to handle projects effectively within an organization, to define what the project is and agree with customer, to plan and assess resource needs for the project, to estimate project cost and make proposals, to plan and schedule activities in a project, to allocate the right resources timely, to assess risk and weaknesses and make backup plans to avoid them, to lead a project team effectively and communicate well.

One of the first steps to be taken is to consider the reason for doing the project, business case. It should be set forth a management statement of the success criteria and it should be agreed with the project sponsor, requiring project planning. It should be also defined who will do the work and stakeholder awareness of the project.

Another point to be considered is the schedules, timelines and phasing for the project. The method of project execution and implementation is the project manager vision to implement project from beginning to end. Costs and budgets of the project cannot be forgotten either. All those aspects make up the framework of the project.

Some of current project challenges in translation business are connected with resources, cost, time, scope, communication. For example, inaccurate scope definition or no detailed project plans to achieve it, failure to perform on time, on budget and quality of deliverables due to lack of controls, lack of visibility on project procurement and/or contract management, lack of buy-in due to poor/ no project communication or miscommunication, lack of rigor in risk management, poor or no documentation and records management in place, no or irregular project health checks carried out, inability to review existing projects against changing priorities / conditions, lack of visibility on resource demands and/or loads, scope not tightly controlled leading to return on investment goals unmet, lack of understanding of quality assurance, miscommunication when accepting a project and time factors and procurement are very important.

Millions of dollars are lost due to those challenges and they may be avoided by planning. Planning is the most important phase of the project management. Planning is the art and science of converting a set of objectives to realization through a series of steps executed in an organized and predicted way so that there will be less requirement of changes in the plan later on. When planning, you define aspects of the project. It is important to manage projects, time, delivery, quality, who will deliver project, who will control it and give feedback.

After planning, scheduling should be done. Scheduling phase is the process of formalizing the planned activities, assigning the durations, resources and sequence of occurrence in consultation with the team members. Client’s consultation must be sought in this phase.
Planning and scheduling phases are undertaken before the actual project starts. After those phases, controlling phase is undertaken during actual project implementation. Project controlling is a mechanism established to determine deviations from the project base schedule, to replan and reschedule during implementation to compensate deviations on the basis of commissioning minima, flow of resources like finance, manpower, equipment and application techniques.

The project might have open ends that need to be dealt through a control mechanism. If one schedule is delayed, it can delay the whole process, that’s why control is important.

Once the controlling is done and everything has gone smooth, it is time for the Closing phase, which is the last phase of the project which brings close out of the whole project. Whatever the project requirements are pre-defined, during this phase, the total delivery is made and it is accepted by the customer.

Conflicts can arise in the project during this phase between those who have worked to deliver the outcome (contractor) and those who are accepting the results of the work (customer).

Once work has been done, work is delivered timely and client gives his ok and pay for it as per payment terms agreed in advance, you close the project. Closing only happens after payment.

Contractors have to agree with payment terms, which need to be clear beforehand.
Some major project management points to be considered are cost, quality, human resources, communication, risks, procurement, changes, documents.

Project integration management supports various elements of project management which are identified, defined, combined and coordinated, such as development of project charter (purpose, scope, time), development of project management plan, direction and managing project execution, monitoring and control of project work, integrating change control, project closing.

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