In the past, large projects would be often managed by the company implementing the project. For example, a construction project would be managed by an architect or construction company responsible for designing or building the project.
However, partly due to the complexity of many modern projects and partly due to the expertise developed by some project management services, many projects are supervised by a business specifically concerned with providing project consulting services. For example, the American construction industry employed over eight million people in 2017. Industrial construction projects can encompass many people and fields, such as building construction, electronic communication and security, data services, and procurement and installation of machinery and equipment. When coordinating so many different services and service providers, it is often a full-time job to just manage the project. Here is a brief overview of five steps used in project management services:
A project is initiated by setting out the end goal of the project and determining its feasibility. By defining the ends of the project, a plan to reach those ends can be laid out. The project proposal also sets out the project budget and project schedule. Moreover, a project proposal outlines the responsibilities for various tasks in planning, executing, documenting, and monitoring the project.
For example, the project proposal may include such high-level plans as the location and size of the factory, as well as the equipment and machinery to be outfitted in the factory. The project proposal may establish that the factory will cost $X million and be completed within 14 months. At this early stage of the project, any further details often have yet to be developed.
Project planning is the stage where the high-level goals from the project proposal are refined down to specific tasks, schedules, budgets, and who will complete each one. In projects that involve third parties, bids may be solicited and contracts may be negotiated and signed. While planning is an essential stage in project management between initiation and execution, it is also repeated iteratively as the project progresses and additional steps, needs, or problems are encountered.
For example, the project plan may designate a specific person or department within a business to handle soliciting construction bids and negotiating construction contracts. While the project plan may set out the budget and schedule used in those negotiations, it may also set out the procurement and installation schedule and budget for outfitting the factory with machinery and equipment.
If a project is well planned, the execution of the plan is relatively straightforward. However, even though following the plan is relatively straightforward, execution is not necessarily easy.
For example, executing on a plan to construct a factory includes coordinating the construction of facilities, installation of utilities and services, procurement of equipment and machinery, and installation of equipment and machinery. Moreover, this aspect of project management must prevent these tasks from interfering with each other or the ultimate goal. For example, if machinery and equipment are delivered before construction is completed, the machinery and equipment must be stored or sit on an uncompleted construction site.
While not directly related to execution, documenting a project is important for a number of reasons. Documentation exists…
- To ensure the goals of the project proposal and project plan are met.
- To ensure all the deliverables within the contract are fulfilled.
- To provide instruction on how to use, maintain, and repair the facilities.
- To provide a road map for other facilities or future projects.
Project management is not a linear process. Rather, it is iterative, with the quality of the project dependent on monitoring the project to identify problems and potential issues, planning how to address those problems and potential issues, and executing on the plan to resolve those problems and potential issues.
When you want a project management group you can trust, rely on The Project Group Consulting today.