As a sincere aspirant to become a project manager, you do realize that you are conferred with tons of responsibilities, substantial power to exercise to get the ball rolling and expected to embrace uncertainty with the entrusted power and responsibility
Going as per the books, every project is an impermanent pursuit to achieve certain goals in a given timeline and within a certain budget with the help of collaboration and planning.
To ensure smooth and efficient operations of all the identified components of a project, the resources procured, and the team employed must be viable enough to serve the interests of the stakeholders and individual goals in terms of budget and given timeline.
A project manager is expected to manage and simplify end-to-end procedures for any new venture that an organization plans to realise their long-term vision.
According to The Project Management Institute, the following 6 key knowledge areas have been identified and squeezed into a standardized acronym – PMBOK. It stands for Project Management Body of Knowledge which encompasses all the 6 pillars of a strategically planned and executed project.
- Project Integration Management
This is the first and foremost stage where a document called project charter is created to start the project by entrusting it to the right leader who could execute it in the right direction.
Once created, the project plan is drafted where the significant components and phases of the project are clearly stipulated.
When the plan is ready, it is then presented to the sponsors and stakeholders for approval. Post-approval, the concerned managers monitor the progress of the plan through various project management software.
- Project Time Management
Every component needs a timeframe and some resources to be initiated and completed well in time. To have a clear view of which tasks are to be prioritized, they need to be put in a sequence that highlights the dependencies between them.
After the tasks are in order, the required resources and time are determined and agreed upon among the team members and respective managers.
To ensure the schedule and budget of the project are being adhered to as planned, techniques and tools like Gantt charts and earned value management (EVM) are used to know if the project plan has unfolded itself well in the real world.
- Project Cost Management
To ensure that the project operations are running smoothly without any misuse of the approved funds, a budget must be established for each component and phase of the project.
The concerned managers need to constantly monitor and follow standard procedures to control the funds being used. The stakeholders are also duly informed about the same so that the scope of the project is well-assessed and covered within the approved budget.
Each task requires a certain amount of material, equipment or labour and the cost is estimated accordingly which is controlled through earned value analysis technique to ensure the least gap between the expectations and results.
- Project Quality Management
A project may be executed well in time and within the assigned budget but what if the delivered quality is not up to the industry standards?
As the captain of the project, you don’t want that!
If the quality is not according to the set standards, the project would eventually not meet the expectations of the stakeholders and deliver the expected results. To control the quality, the deliverables must be reviewed at each level to ensure the set standards are met.
- Project Risk Management
Risk management is classified into two categories and performed in a certain sequence– Qualitative and Quantitative.
The risks are identified, categorized and prioritized according to the probability and impact on the project. Based upon the perceived impact and likelihood of the risk, the qualitative risk analysis is performed first. After prioritizing it according to the impact, the quantitative risk analysis is conducted to know what consequences it could have on the budget or schedule of the project.
The identified risks are regularly reviewed by the project manager so that the risks that no longer have an impact on the execution of the project are struck off to control the perceived loss or risk.
- Project Human Resource Management
Having the best team on board and ensuring their satisfaction are the two major responsibility areas for any project manager. It’s really important to track and help them, if needed, with the work entrusted to them. According to the tasks to be delegated, the job descriptions are determined for various open positions.
Those positions are then filled in either by hiring new people or by utilizing staff from within the company. The newly hired team is trained on the essential hard and soft project management skills as per the requirement that makes them fit for the project. Besides their competencies, the project manager is also supposed to take care of the team’s overall satisfaction levels.
The expectations of the stakeholders and team members are really important to be taken care of and therefore prioritizing their concerns is crucial basis the impact they could have on the project.
To ensure that a project is accomplished, all the above aspects are duly taken care of by a project manager so that the organization’s goals are achieved without compromising on the team’s overall satisfaction.
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