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Background of the Project Management Plan

Question:

Write an essay on project management plan.
 

Project management plan enables the project managers to plan the entire project effectively, by considering various elements of the project. Here, in this report, an example project is considered to review and analyse the project management plan implemented in the report against the standard frameworks, theories and methodologies developed and existing. The framework of the project management plan theories and methodologies are studied in this report and then are provided a detailed analysis of how apt it is and how it is not. The analysis and detailed deviation is reported by comparing the elements of the plan involved in the general project plan as well as the plan that has been presented in the project, which is considered as an example. The report is structured, starting with the background of the project management plan, which discusses details of the project management plan and its significance in the planning of the project. The example project is discussed in terms of the nature of the venture of the project. In this section, characteristics of the project are identified and then analysed. In the following section, project management plan is considered for the discussed and then the purpose of the project management plan is discussed. The discussion of the project management plan is concluded in the following section.

The report discusses the general stakeholders or audience of the project management plan. The structure of the project management plan is then discussed in detail. In this structure, the example project is considered for the analysis, by addressing the areas that are covered in the project and the areas that are not covered in the report, against the significant elements of the project management plan. Scope management is then addressed. The general contents of the project management plan is addressed in terms of analysis of the content requirement and then through scope of management plan. Finally, the content requirements for the project management plan are discussed.

Project management plan and the relative project management document is simply termed as a project plan. The plan contains the strategy to manage the processes and so the project related to and includes all the project areas, such as scope, schedule, cost, schedule, etc., usually termed as knowledge areas related to the project management. There is a format that needs to be used for every project management plan document that needs to be addressed. The complete format is usually, longer and in detail. However, the entire format is not necessarily used for every project management plan document and it should be tailored based on the unique needs and requirements of the specific project, as every project is unique in the world.

The typical project management approach for any project management plan document is indicating the authority and roles of each of the team members of the project. The report shows the executive summary of the formally designed and developed project management plan.

The example project is The Green ICT Project, which is a science project, which involves the tasks and activities related to performing scientific methods of reducing the greenhouse gas. This is the project, which involves more of intensive activities to be conducted by a team, which involves small number of internal stakeholders and more number of external stakeholders. 

Example Project Characteristics

The project considered as an example case is, The Green ICT Project, which is an engineering project. The primary and major characteristics of the project for analysis can be the following.

  • Scope management plan
  • Schedule management plan
  • Requirements management plan
  • Resource management plan
  • Financial amendment plan
  • Quality management plan
  • Communication management plan
  • Risk management plan
  • Stakeholder management plan
  • Project change management plan
  • Procurement management plan

Ideally, not only the Green ICT project, in fact every sample project has to be prepared to address and cover the above elements in the project management plan and so the same list becomes the reference as the characteristics of the analysis.

The purpose of the project management plan should fulfil and achieve the objective of defining the approach that has to be used by the team of the project, towards the delivery of the project outcomes within the scope defined for the project. Ideally, the project management plan has to answer the following questions.

  1. What?

What are the objectives and what will be the work that has to be performed for the project? What are the primary and major deliverables or products of the project? These two questions are to be posed before making the project management plan and should answer these questions, when the key stakeholders go through the project management plan.

  1. Why?

What is the proposition of the value and problem is to be addressed by the specific project and why the project is being sponsored? These two questions are to be answered in the project management plan towards justification of the project.

  1. When?

What is the schedule or timeline fo the project, to implement each and every task and activity related ot the project and when would the milestone items, which are meaningful points would be completed? These questions are to be addressed to fulfil with the answers in the report.

  1. Who?

Who are the stakeholders of the project and what will be their roles and responsibilities assigned within the project and how would the stakeholders be managed. These are the two questions to be asked and justified with the answers presented in the project management plan.

Every project management plan should be concluded with all the integration management plan, detailing how all the elements and sections of the project would be integrated, towards achievement of the common goal and objective of the project.

The audience fo the project management plan is ideally, all the key stakeholders, who involve in the project, either directly or indirectly, connecting the inputs, processes or outputs of the project. The key stakeholders of any project are the sponsor, project manager, team members of the project, in terms of defining and influencing the success of the project. Other important key stakeholders are the beneficiary from the outcomes and fruits of the project.

Audience of the Green ICT project

The Green ICT project shows the list of the audience, in terms of stakeholders.

SNO

STAKEHOLDER

AUDIENCE

IMPORTANCE

1

Sponsor of the project

Major and key audience, deciding the future of the project with approval or reject

High

2

Project Manager

Report is designed and developed by the manager, so the other project managers, who deal with the other similar projects become the audience

Low

3

Team members of project

Become vital for the success of the project, so become key audience for the project management plan and also learn how they are going to contribute the success of the project

High

4

Other internal stakeholders

Suppliers, human resource contract personnel and other key input suppliers of the project are the audience, who become the audience and play indirect and vital role that influence the final outcomes of the project

Medium

5

Beneficiary

The final beneficiary of the fruits and outcomes of the project are going to be the audience of the project

High

6

Other external stakeholders

The beneficiaries, who enjoy the fruits and outcomes of the project indirectly, become the audience

Low

It is recommended that all the project managers and the aspirants of the project managers can be benefited from the theories, methodologies and frameworks of the project management plan. 

The Green ICT project is structured in a logical sequence of what is required to know primarily by the audience and what is required secondarily, about the project.

Scope Management

Initially, the problem statement is defined, which includes the causes of the greenhouse gas emissions and the contribution of ICT for the same. Then the objectives of the project are defined towards investigation of the carbon dioxide footprint of ICT, exist within the Australian National University, identifying the ways to reduce it, working the with the stakeholders for contemporary trends for reduction, identifying relevant government incentives, increasing awareness of the stakeholders and reducing the targeted percentage of the emission within a time limit.

The scope management plan is described through utilization matrix. The scope is clearly mentioned what outcomes are within the scope and what are not within the scope of the project. The basic steps are also given through SIPOC diagram. This management plan also addressed the constraints, assumptions, Critical to Quality matrix, project lifecycle in detail, so that the scope and objectives are justified for the project.

The following section, time management plan includes defining and developing the main milestones to implement the tasks of the ICT Green project. The milestones are addressed with detailed starting dates to commence the tasks. Gantt chart that illustrates the detailed schedule of the project is presented with key milestones and dates.

Cost management plan is the following section, in which the budget details are given, however this section is poorly covered as the details of the budget estimation and budget items are unspecified.

The quality management plan is started with the definition of the key performance indicators of the project and measuring them, against the quality standards of the project. It specifies clearly, how much carbon reduction is expected, within what time, and establishment of the sustainable ICT policy as well as the working group.

The following section, human resource management plan has been specified hierarchically, starting from governance and engagement towards the project executives and project team. The roles and responsibilities of the key stakeholders are clearly specified with the RACI matrix, addressing the motivational factors. This section is covered effectively with better analysis. Communication management plan is the following section and it specifies the meetings to be conducted along with the key questions, of what, where, who and when to achieve the objective of the meeting. The  risk management plan is addressed covering most of the risks associated with the project at all levels, higher, medium and lower probabilities.

Finally the structure of the project management plan is completed with the procurement management plan, which detailed about how the procurement must be arised along with respective approvals needed. 

The Green ICT project has covered some of the sections and elements fo the project management plan very effectively, like scope management, human resource management, schedule managemtn, quality management and risk management. However, the other sections, like cost management plan, procurement management plans are poorly covered, towards completion.

The following content is usually required towards completion of the project management plan document.

Scope of management plan

The project scope statement is to be included in the project management plan, in the section of project charter. The scope statement must be the first or starting point. It usually includes what must be included in the project and what should not be included in the project, in terms of out-of-scope and in-scope.

The plan ideally should include the list of the milestones.  The milestones are the stop points that would help in evaluating the so far progress of the project. The list of milestone should include the name of the milestone, its description and expected date to be completed.

For every project management plan, the following elemnets and items of planning are essential and should be addressed to its possible and relevance extent. 

 

Conclusion

Project management plan is discussed in terms of its purpose, framework, methodologies, like PMBOK, PRINCE, though their names are not directly addressed. The given project management plan is considered as an example and analysis is conducted and presented. The findings from the report are that the project management plan, creates virtually viable path to the final outcome and objective of the project. 

References

A Guide to the Project Management Body of Knowledge, copyright page, edition 2

Body of Knowledge, 2006, Association for Project Management, 5th edition.

Cattani, G., Ferriani, S., Frederiksen, L. and Florian, T. 2011, Project-Based Organizing and Strategic Management, Advances in Strategic Management, Vol 28, Emerald,

Hamilton, A, 2004, Handbook of Project Management Procedures. TTL Publishing, Ltd.

Harrison, F. L., Lock, D, 2004, Advanced project management: a structured approach. Gower Publishing, Ltd.ject Management Institute.

Kousholt, B, 2007, Project Management –. Theory and practice.. Nyt Teknisk Forlag.

Kwak, Y, 2005,  "A brief History of Project Management". In: The story of managing projects. Elias G. Carayannis et al. (9 eds), Greenwood Publishing Group, 

Lewis, J, 2000, The project manager's desk reference: : a comprehensive guide to project planning, scheduling, evaluation, and systems.

Nathan, P, Jones, G, 2003, PMP certification for dummies.

OGC (Office of Government Commerce), 2009, Managing Successful Projects with PRINCE2 (2009 ed.). TSO (The Stationery Office).

 Paul C. Dinsmore et al, 2005, The right projects done right!John Wiley and Sons,

Phillips, J, 2003, PMP Project Management Professional Study Guide. McGraw-Hill Professional

 PMI, 2012, A Guide to the Project Management Body of Knowledge, 5th Ed.

Serra, C. & Kunc, M., 2014. Benefits Realisation Management and its influence on project success and on the execution of business strategies. Also, no. International Journal of Project Management, Issue

Snyder, C, Parth, F, 2006,  Introduction to IT Project Management.

Stevens, M, 2002, Project Management Pathways. Association for Project Management. APM Publishing Limited.

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