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Handbook of Project Management

Handbook of Project Management

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Useful book on Project Management and its application, with incisive illustrations and practical examples.
Useful book on Project Management and its application, with incisive illustrations and practical examples.

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Published by: G on Sep 17, 2009
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Project Integration

If there is a single word that characterizes project management, it is integration. It is the responsibility of the
project manager to integrate the efforts of the varied human resources; the variety of equipment, supplies, and
materials; and the technologies to produce the product of the project in conformance with the
requirements/specifications, on schedule, and within budget.

The project environment is inherently dynamic. It is impractical, if not impossible, to predecide all aspects of
the project, and inevitably things do not always go as planned. The project manager is the focal point for
gathering the relevant information, making adjustments in plans, and communicating the new plans to all
concerned. Project management is, by its very nature, a challenge to conceptualize, plan, implement, and
close out the project within the triad of cost-schedule-performance.

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AMA Handbook of Project Management, The

by Paul C. Dinsmore

AMACOM Books
ISBN: 0814401066 Pub Date: 01/01/93

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Strategic Planning

The integration process is facilitated by having an overall strategy for the project: a strategic vision. Such a
vision, if adequately communicated to the project team, can be the theme for subsequent integration and
control actions. Strategic planning and the subsequent integration operate on at least three levels: technical,
human, and schedule.

1. At the technical level, it involves combining the product components in a manner that best achieves
the requirements. For example, in assembling a stereo system, the system performs up to the level of
the most limiting component. This is true of any project.
2. At the human level, it is necessary to deal with concepts and work efforts. A well-defined strategic
vision of how the project is to be carried out aids in achieving a common concept of the project for all
team members. This is essential to ensure that all efforts are directed toward the same objectives in a
consistent manner.
3. At the schedule level, the strategic vision aids in ensuring that all elements of the project are
completed when required. And yet they should not be completed too early lest they have to be redone,
become damaged, or get lost, not to mention the extra interest on the money expended to do the task if
it is done too early. This vision is made explicit in this regard through the network plan for the project.

Control requirements and procedures need to be well designed and in place before substantial efforts on the
project proceed so the records can be complete from the beginning. Valuable time and effort can be consumed
in retracing the records after the fact, and control can be lost before the project really gets started.
Furthermore, legal tests of prudency, common in the utility industry, are better dealt with when accurate and
complete records of the project are available.

Resource Allocation

This is an essential process that both determines the cost of the project as defined and provides control over
the project participants. Viewed simply, it is the budget. But even managing the budget per se neither brings
the project in under budget nor on schedule. The project manager must ensure that the allocation of specific
resources is adequate but not excessive and that the right resources are assigned to the right tasks. This is not a
simple procedure because of the number of activities that can be in process simultaneously. Fortunately,
modern project management software provides considerable assistance by identifying those activities which

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are most critical, the number of units of resource required by day for a given schedule, and the activities on
which a critical resource is required. Nevertheless, having identified the critical decision areas, human
judgment is still required to evaluate and make the final decisions.

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