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Project management
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

Project management is the discipline of defining and achieving targets while optimizing the use of resources (time,
money, people, space, etc). Thus, it could be classified into several models: time, cost, scope, and intangibles.

Project management is quite often the province and responsibility of an individual project manager. This individual
seldom participates directly in the activities that produce the end result, but rather strives to maintain the progress and
productive mutual interaction of various parties in such a way that overall risk of failure is reduced.

Compare a project to say, a manufacturing line, which is intended to be a continuous process without a planned end.

Typical projects might include the engineering and construction of a building, or the design, coding, testing and
documentation of a computer software program, or development of the science and clinical testing of a new drug. The
duration of a project is the time from its start to its completion, which can take days, weeks, months or even years.

In contrast to on-going, functional work, a project is "a temporary endeavor undertaken to create a unique product,
service, or result" (A Guide to the Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK® Guide, Third Edition, Project
Management Institute, 2004, p. 5). Projects are temporary because they have a definite beginning and a definite end. They
are unique because the product or service they create is different in some distinguishing way from similar products or

1 Approaches
2 The traditional approach
3 History of project management
4 Project Management Steps
5 Process-based management
6 Project management standards and professional certification
7 Case Studies
8 See also
9 External links

Generally, there are two approaches that can be taken to project management today. The "traditional" approach identifies
a sequence of steps to be completed. This contrasts with the agile software development approach in which the project is
seen as relatively small tasks rather than a complete process. The objective of this approach is to impose as little overhead
as possible in the form of rationale, justification, documentation, reporting, meetings, and permission. This approach may
also be called the "spiral" approach, since completion of one of the small tasks leads to the beginning of the next.

The traditional approach

In the traditional approach, we can distinguish 5 components of a project (4 stages plus control) in the development of a

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Project management - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

1. project initiation (Kickoff)

2. project planning
3. project production or execution
4. project monitoring or controlling
5. project completion

Not all projects will visit every stage as projects can be terminated before they reach completion. Some projects probably
don't have the planning and/or the monitoring. Some projects will go through steps 2, 3 and 4 multiple times.

Many industries utilize variations on these stages. For example, in bricks and mortar architectural design, projects
typically progress through stages like Pre-Planning, Conceptual Design, Schematic Design, Design Development,
Construction Drawings (or Contract Documents), and Construction Administration. While the names may differ from
industry to industry, the actual stages typically follow common steps to problem solving--defining the problem, weighing
options, choosing a path, implementation and evaluation.

Project management tries to gain control over five variables:


Three of these variables can be given by external or internal customers. The value(s) of the remaining variable(s) is/are
then set by project management, ideally based on solid estimation techniques. The final values have to be agreed upon in a
negotiation process between project management and the customer. Usually, the values in terms of time, cost, quality and
scope are contracted.

To keep control over the project from the beginning of the project all the way to its natural conclusion, a project manager
uses a number of techniques: project planning, earned value, risk management, scheduling, process improvement.

History of project management

Project management was not used as an isolated concept before the Sputnik crisis of the Cold War. After this crisis, the
United States Department of Defense needed to speed up the military project process and new tools (models) for
achieving this goal were invented. In 1958 they invented the Program Evaluation and Review Technique or PERT, as part
of the Polaris missile submarine program. At the same time, the DuPont corporation invented a similar model called CPM,
critical path method. PERT was later extended with a work breakdown structure or WBS. The process flow and structure
of the military undertakings quickly spread into many private enterprises.

There are a number of guiding techniques that have been developed over the years that can be used to formally specify
exactly how the project will be managed. These include the Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK), and
such ideas as the Personal Software Process (PSP), and the Team Software Process (TSP) and PRINCE2. These
techniques attempt to standardize the practices of the development team making them easier to predict and manage as well
as track.

Critical chain is the latest extension to the traditional critical path method.

In critical studies of project management, it has been noted that several of these fundamentally PERT-based models are
not well suited for the multi-project company environment of today. Most of them are aimed at very large-scale, one-time,
non-routine projects, and nowadays all kinds of management are expressed in terms of projects. Using complex models
for "projects" (or rather "tasks") spanning a few weeks has been proven to cause unnecessary costs and low
maneuverability in several cases. Instead project management experts try to identify different "lightweight" models, such
as, for example Extreme Programming for software development and Scrum techniques. The generalization of extreme
programming to other kinds of projects is extreme project management.

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Project management - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Project Management Steps

Project Management is basically divided into five parts

1. Requirements analysis 2. Engineering and Design 3. Procurement 4. Development or Construction 5. Maintenance or

Post Development System (or Software) Support

Requirements analysis begins the process by defining the requirements and specifications, first in coarse terms, followed
by increasingly refined terms, until a clear concept of operation and design can emerge. It is critical to the remaining steps
that this step be complete and not changed, because the cost to make changes to the requirements is exponential as one
moves from step to step.

The basic design, conceptualization and Engineering comes under the category of Engineering Works.

Procurement is the purchase of raw material like Brought Outs, Materials, Tools and Tackles, etc required for the project.

Construction includes implementation, installation or construction project including testing...

Process-based management
Also furthering the concept of project control is the incorporation of process-based management. This area has been
driven by the use of Maturity models such as the CMMi (Capability Maturity Model integrated) and ISO/IEC15504
(SPICE - Software Process Improvement Capability dEtermination). Both of these models have been successfully adopted
by organizations all over the world in an effort to have better control over projects. With a view to improving accuracy of
estimation, reducing costs and preventing defects. CMMi is widely used in the defence industry and their subcontractors
in the USA and Australia, and SPICE is growing in use in the private sector in Europe.

The main thrust of process management is the concept of knowledge management. It is the experience of companies that
use these models that the creation of a set of defined processes detailing what the company actually does has enabled them
to achieve consistency across project teams and projects. They have also found that, when it is defined, their ability to
track and monitor performance with a view to improvement is far more successful.

Project management standards and professional certification

There have been several attempts to develop project management standards, such as:

ISO 10006:1997, Quality management - Guidelines to quality in project management

Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK)
PRINCE2 (Projects IN a Controlled Environment)
V-Modell (German project management method)
ISEB Project Management Syllabus (

See also: An exhaustive list of standards (maturity models) (

So far, there is no known attempt to develop a project management standard available under the GNU Free
Documentation License. There is a proposed Project Management XML Schema
( .

Case Studies
Salvage of the Port of Massawa, Eritrea, 1942. The port was a chaotic mess. Access had been blocked with
scuttled ships and port facilities had been wrecked. Captain Edward Ellsberg, a US Navy salvage expert, rapidly

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salvaged scuttled ships for service in the Allied merchant fleets. He also salvaged a large floating dry dock and
returned port shops and facilities to operation. Ellsberg had very limited resources and poor administrative support.
Ellsberg's efforts show that a project oriented expert can accomplish a nearly insurmountable task. Interestingly,
Ellsberg had virtually no support staff. He planned and managed the entire project by himself with the assistance of
a few skilled workers. Ellsberg, an accomplished author, documented the case in Under the Red Sea Sun (New
York: Dodd, Mead & Company, 1946).

The Great Escape, 1944. The escape from Stalag Luft III in 1944 is documented in The Great Escape (New York:
Norton, 1950) by Paul Brickhill. In this case, a large, highly-decentralized organization worked toward the goal of
a mass escape over a long period of time. This shows how an ad hoc group can use diverse talents to accomplish a
difficult task under very adverse circumstances. This highly dramatic episode lent itself dramatization in the movie,
The Great Escape, in 1963.

See also
Building construction
Capability Maturity Model
Construction Management
Critical chain
Critical path
Earned value management
Functionality, mission and scope creep
Gantt chart
Project accounting
Program management
Project management software
RACI diagram
Work Breakdown Structure

External links
Project and Commercial Management Services (
Construction Law, Contracts & Commercial Consultants (
International Project Management Association (
Association for Project Management (
The Project Management Institute (
Project management on Open Directory
( .
page on project management standards (
Wideman Comparative Glossary of Project Management Terms (
Software process bibliography (
news://alt.projectmng (Via Google Groups ( )
news://alt.comp.project-management (Via Google Groups
( )
EServer TC Library: Project Management (
- Project Magazine ( - IT Project Management Resources (
The Project Management Center (
Project Management Tutorial (
Project Planning (
Project Management Methodology for Shutdowns, Turnarounds and Outages
Turnaround Project Management Primer

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Project InVision - Project and Process Management Software (

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This page was last modified 13:36, 24 August 2005.

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