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The Five Project Management Lifecycle Models: their vulnerabilities to failures and risks and the mitigations strategies

to minimise the risk of occurrences of these failures John Constance MSc in Project Management, University of Liverpool Overview of PMLC Models The project management lifecycle model is linked to project management process groups (Scoping, Launching, Monitoring and Controlling, Closing); built around Goal and Solution variables, Clear and Complete and Not Clear and Complete values (Wysocki, 2009 pp.299). The Five PMLC Models are linked Traditional Project Management (TPM) approach, Agile Project Management (APM) approach and Extreme Project Management (xPM) approach. The TPM approach is for project with no expected changes and includes the Linear PMLC model in which the five process groups are each executed once with no going back to repeat a process group and the knowledge gained from one process group is not used to change from a previous completed process group to an ongoing process group (Wysocki, 2009, pp.328); and Incremental PMLC model where partial deliverables are released according to schedule, all incremental happens in a linear fashion, and the project ends with the same deliverables at approximately the same time (Wysocki, 2009, pp.328). The APM approach includes two models, the Iterative PMLC model wherein the project solution is unclear, change is expected and the process repeats itself until either the project owner is satisfied and has no further changes (Wysocki, 2009, pp.332); and the Adaptive PMLC model wherein there is incomplete and limited understanding of the solution and the model accommodates a higher level of uncertainty and complexity (Wysocki, 2009, pp.404). The XPM approach also includes two models, the Extreme PMLC and the Emertxe PMLC which are identical models. The Extreme PMLC model is high-risk, high-change and high-speed projects whose solutions and goals are not known or clearly defined. The Emertxe PMLC on the other hand has known solutions but unknown goals having each phase as a complete project in its own right (Wysocki, 2009, pp.335) Below is a more detailed description of the 5 PMLC models, its characteristics, applications, vulnerabilities in terms of failures and risks, the situations where failures are more likely to occur and the mitigation measures to apply in order to minimise the risk of occurrences of these failures.

PMLC Models

Definition

Characteristic

Vulnerabilities in terms of failures and risks


Potential for change

Situations where failures are most likely to occur


client upgrading, improvement in technology, etc design changes long deliverable production period

mitigation strategies to minimise the risk of occurrence of these failures

TPM-Linear

Scope, Plan, Launch, Monitor & Control, Close Project Clear Goal & Solution Must be complete before the Process Group can begin

Complete & clearly defines goals, solution, requirement, functions & features Few expected scope change request Routine & repetitive activities Use of established templates

adopt a efficient

High Costs

Over Scheduling

process for change order approvals establish contingencies for time and budget creep deadline for design review and input concise cash flow projection document complete tasks defined team and task scheduling strict timelines and deadlines in schedule checking good communication plan

TPMIncremental

Scope, Plan, Launch

Increment 1,2,n, Monitor & Control Increment 1,2,n, Close Increment 1,2,n, Close project Solution is not functional Consist of dependent increments completed in a prescribed sequence

APMIterative

Scope, Plan Iteration, Launch Iteration, Monitor & Control Iteration, Close Iteration, Next Iteration, Close Project Most of the solution is clearly known Likely to be multiple change requests More complex Scoping phase Two levels Planning phase Small launching team, most skilled, co-located, senior and unsupervised More informal reporting Client specified Closing Phase

Complete & clearly defines goals, solution, requirement, functions & features Few expected scope change request Routine & repetitive activities Use of established templates Need to release deliverables in a more aggressive schedule Solution is known but not to expected depth Use of iconic or simulated prototypes to discover the complete solution

Limited team interaction Schedule and budgeting Team co-location

Design development Client input communications

Client input Co-location team

Planning process schedule communications

Clear team and client role defined process schedule good communication plan

PMLC Models

Definition

Characteristic

Vulnerabilities in terms of failures and risks


High level of client involvement Unclear solution

Situations where failures are most likely to occur


Client input Proper funding in place

mitigation strategies to minimise the risk of occurrence of these failures


defined process schedule concise budgetary estimates

APMAdaptive

xPMExtreme

Scope, Plan Cycle, Launch Cycle, Monitor & Control Cycle, Close Cycle, Next Cycle, Close Project Most of the solution is not known High-level Scoping phase activity High-level Scoping phase High-level Planning phase Small launching team, most skilled, co-located, senior and unsupervised Informal Monitoring and Control Documented Closing Phase Scope Phase, Plan Phase, Launch Phase, Monitor & Control, Close Phase, Next Phase, Close Project Most complex of all PMLC models Unclear goals and unclear solutions

Iterative structure Just-in-time planning Critical mission Projects Changes through learning and discovery

High speed High change High Uncertainty

Undefined goals or solutions High risk of failure

Progress status Contracts deliverables

Keep client aware of lost of funds until clear solution is found Find problems early in the process Contract clauses to include possibilities and acceptance of failures

Conclusion Project Management must be approached based on the specific project situations. The role of the project manager is to have a clear understanding of the landscape or management methodology needed to successfully complete the project. Project management involves both internal and external factors regarding implementation and the landscape must be approached with the best-fit PMLC model suited for each and every proposed project. It has been my experience that the TPM approach always seems best-fit with engineering projects and the APM approaches are most fitting research and survey projects.

Bibliography
Robert K. Wysocki, Effective Project Management Traditional, Agile, Extreme, 5th ed, pp 283-292 J. J. Khul (Project Lifecycle Models: How They Differ and When to Use Them, business-esolutions.com, 2002