A project is a planned series of related activities for achieving a specific business objective. Project
management refers to the application of knowledge, skills, tools, and techniques to achieve specific
targets within specific budget and time constraints. Project management activities include planning the
work, assessing risk estimating resources required to accomplish the work, organizing the work, acquiring
human and materials resources, assigning tasks, directing activities, controlling project execution,
reporting progress, and analyzing the results. As in other areas of business, project management for
information systems must deal with five major variables: scope, time, cost, quality, and risk.
Scope defines what work is or is not included in a project. For example, the scope of a project for new
order processing system might include new modules for imputing orders and transmitting them to
production and accounting but not any changes to related accounts receivables, manufacturing,
distribution, or inventory control systems. Project management defines all the work required to complete
a project successfully, and should ensure that the scope of a project not expand beyond what was
Time is the amount of time required to complete the project. Projected management typically established
the amount of time required to complete major components of a project. Each of these components is
further broken down into activities and tasks. Project management tries to determine the time required to
complete each task and establish a schedule for completing work.
Cost is based on the time to complete a project multiplied by the daily cost of human resources required
to complete the project. Information systems project costs also include the cost of hardware, software, and
work space. Project management develops a budget for the project and monitors ongoing project expense.