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A Guide to Project Management

Of general management application areas are

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Unformatted text preview: ll determine whether the feasibility study is treated as the first project phase or as a separate, standalone project. The project life-cycle definition will also determine which transitional actions at the beginning and the end of the project are included and which are not. In this manner, the project life-cycle definition can be used to link the project to the ongoing operations of the performing organization. The phase sequence defined by most project life cycles generally involves some form of technology transfer or handoff such as requirements to design, construction to operations, or design to manufacturing. Deliverables from the preceding phase are usually approved before work starts on the next phase. However, a subsequent phase is sometimes begun prior to approval of the previous phase deliverables when the risks involved are deemed acceptable. This practice of overlapping phases is often called fast tracking. Project life cycles generally define: What technical work should be done in each phase (e.g., is the work of the architect part of the definition phase or part of the execution phase?). Who should be involved in each phase (e.g., implementers who need to be involved with requirements and design). Project life-cycle descriptions may be very general or very detailed. Highly detailed descriptions may have numerous forms, charts, and checklists to provide structure and consistency. Such detailed approaches are often called project management methodologies. Most project life-cycle descriptions share a number of common characteristics: Cost and staffing levels are low at the start, higher toward the end, and drop rapidly as the project draws to a conclusion. This pattern is illustrated in Figure 2-1. The probability of successfully completing the project is lowest, and hence risk and uncertainty are highest, at the start of the project. The probability of successful completion generally gets progressively higher as the project continues. The ability of the stakeholders to influence the final characteristics of the project's product and the final cost of the project is highest at the start and gets progressively lower as the project continues. A major contributor to this phenomenon is that the cost of changes and error correction generally increases as the project continues. Care should be taken to distinguish the project life cycle from the product life cycle. For example, a project undertaken to bring a new desktop computer to market is but one phase or stage of the product life cycle. 12 NAVIGATION LINKS ACROYMNS LIST ACRONYMS LIST ACROYMNS LIST A Guide to the Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK Guide) 2000 Edition 2000 Project Management Institute, Four Campus Boulevard, Newtown Square, PA 19073-3299 USA Chapter 2--The Project Management Context Cost and Staffing Level Initial Phase Intermediate Phases (one or more) Final Phase Start Time Finish Figure 21. Sample Generic Life Cycle A Guide to the A Guide to the Although many pro...
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