Project Management is the discipline of planning, monitoring, and controlling software projects, identifying the scope, estimating the work involved, and creating a project schedule. Along with it is also responsible for keeping the team up to date on the project’s progress handling problems and discussing solutions.
The Project Management Process consists of the following 4 stages:
- Feasibility study
- Project Planning
- Project Execution
- Project Termination
Feasibility Study: A feasibility study explores system requirements to determine project feasibility. There are several fields of feasibility study including economic feasibility, operational feasibility, and technical feasibility. The goal is to determine whether the system can be implemented or not. The process of feasibility study takes as input the required details as specified by the user and other domain-specific details. The output of this process simply tells whether the project should be undertaken or not and if yes, what would the constraints be. Additionally, all the risks and their potential effects on the projects are also evaluated before a decision to start the project is taken.
Project Planning: A detailed plan stating a stepwise strategy to achieve the listed objectives is an integral part of any project. Planning consists of the following activities:
- Set objectives or goals
- Develop strategies
- Develop project policies
- Determine courses of action
- Making planning decisions
- Set procedures and rules for the project
- Develop a software project plan
- Prepare budget
- Conduct risk management
- Document software project plans
This step also involves the construction of a work breakdown structure(WBS). It also includes size, effort, schedule, and cost estimation using various techniques.
Principles of effective project planning:
The project should be effective so that the project begins with well-defined tasks. Effective project planning helps to minimize the additional costs incurred on the project while it is in progress.
- Planning is necessary: Planning should be done before a project begins.
- Risk analysis: Before starting the project, senior management and the project management team should consider the risks that may affect the project.
- Tracking of project plan: Once the project plan is prepared, it should be tracked and modified accordingly.
- Most quality standards and produce quality deliverables: The project plan should identify processes by which the project management team can ensure quality in software.
- Description of flexibility to accommodate changes: The result of project planning is recorded in the form of a project plan, which should allow new changes to be accommodated when the project is in progress
Project Execution: A project is executed by choosing an appropriate software development lifecycle model(SDLC). It includes several steps including requirements analysis, design, coding, testing and implementation, testing, delivery, and maintenance. Several factors need to be considered while doing so including the size of the system, the nature of the project, time and budget constraints, domain requirements, etc. An inappropriate SDLC can lead to the failure of the project.
Project Termination: There can be several reasons for the termination of a project. Though expecting a project to terminate after successful completion is conventional, at times, a project may also terminate without completion. Projects have to be closed down when the requirements are not fulfilled according to given time and cost constraints.
Some of the reasons for failure include:
- Fast-changing technology
- The project running out of time
- Organizational politics
- Too much change in customer requirements
- Project exceeding budget or funds
Once the project is terminated, a post-performance analysis is done. Also, a final report is published describing the experiences, lessons learned, and recommendations for handling future projects.
Project management is a systematic approach to planning, organizing, and controlling the resources required to achieve specific project goals and objectives. The project management process involves a set of activities that are performed to plan, execute, and close a project. The project management process can be divided into several phases, each of which has a specific purpose and set of tasks.
The main phases of the project management process are:
- Initiation: This phase involves defining the project, identifying the stakeholders, and establishing the project’s goals and objectives.
- Planning: In this phase, the project manager defines the scope of the project, develops a detailed project plan, and identifies the resources required to complete the project.
- Execution: This phase involves the actual implementation of the project, including the allocation of resources, the execution of tasks, and the monitoring and control of project progress.
- Monitoring and Control: This phase involves tracking the project’s progress, comparing actual results to the project plan, and making changes to the project as necessary.
- Closing: This phase involves completing the project, documenting the results, and closing out any open issues.
- Effective project management requires a clear understanding of the project management process and the skills necessary to apply it effectively. The project manager must have the ability to plan and execute projects, manage resources, communicate effectively, and handle risks and issues.
Advantages of the project management process:
- Provides a structured approach to managing projects.
- Helps to define project objectives and requirements.
- Facilitates effective communication and collaboration among team members.
- Helps to manage project risks and issues.
- Ensures that the project is delivered on time and within budget.
Disadvantages of the project management process:
- Can be time-consuming and bureaucratic
- May be inflexible and less adaptable to changes
- Requires a skilled project manager to implement effectively
- May not be suitable for small or simple projects.
Responsibilities of software project manager:
-Proper project management is essential for the successful completion of a software project and the person who is responsible for it is called the project manager.
-To do his job effectively, the project manager must have a certain set of skills. This section discusses both the job responsibilities of a project manager and the skills required by him.
Job Responsibilities :
-Involves the senior managers in the process of appointing team members.
-Builds the project team and assigns tasks to various team members.
-Responsible for effective project planning and scheduling, project monitoring, and control activities to achieve the project objectives.
-Acts as a communicator between the senior management and the other persons involved in the project like the development team and internal and external stakeholders.
-Effectively resolves issues that arise between the team members by changing their roles and responsibilities.
-Modifies the project plan(if required)to deal with the situation.
- “A Guide to the Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK Guide)” by Project Management Institute. This book provides a comprehensive overview of project management, including the project management process and the best practices used in project management.
- “Project Management: A Systems Approach to Planning, Scheduling, and Controlling” by Harold R. Kerzner. This book provides a comprehensive guide to project management, including the project management process, tools, and techniques used in project management.
- “Agile Project Management: Creating Innovative Products” by Jim Highsmith. This book provides an overview of agile project management, a popular approach to project management that emphasizes flexibility, collaboration, and adaptability.
Project management is a procedure that requires responsibility. The project management process brings all of the other project tasks together and ensures that the project runs smoothly. As a result, the project management team should have a thorough awareness of all project management procedures as well as the tools that can be used for each one.
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