Week 2a: Project Management Processes

In this week of the course we look at Project Management Processes, which are detailed in this posting , and Project Management Methodologies, which are detailed in the post Week 2b.

Project management continues to be problematic. Statistics show that a high percentage of projects fail. 51 % of enterprise resources planning systems are considered a failure. 47 % of customer relationship management projects go live and the technology aspects are considered a success but business change and adoption fail. There are many other examples of project failure, including this SAP project:

Another example is the “Confirm” project which was undertaken by a consortium comprising Hilton, Marriott, Budget Car Rentals and American Airlines to create an advanced resrvation system combining travel, lodging and car rental, which was can celled after 5 years and after going millions of dollars over the initial budget.

Project Management Processes

The frequent examples of project failure have led to a recognition that projects will benefit from the application of a consistent methodology. In the Project Management Body of Knowledge a set of processes have been outlined that can be used in projects. These group processes around key aspects of project management:

1. Initiating Process Group

2. Planning Process Group

3. Executing Project Group

4. Monitoring and Controlling Process Group

5. Closing Process Group

It is important to understand that there are interactions between the processes both within each process group and between the process groups themselves. The following video explains the PMBOK project management processes:

The PMBOK states that the project manager should use the processes that are appropriate for the project that they are engaged in. They should not apply all of the PMBOK processes to every project. They describe PMBOK as “good practices most of the time” so ,again, it is the role of the project manager to decide on the applicability of the PMBOK processes to their project. The following video considers the historical position of project management in the world:

The project management process groups overlap and interact – every process group can be used at every process stage as project management is iterative – processes are often repeated. This iterative process uses the Plan Do Check Act cycle that is evident in other areas of operations management.

The PMBOK is the methodology for project management that has been created by the Project Management Institute. It is used as an example of a methodology in this course. In posting Week 2b, other methodologies are outlined. The final video for this posting highlights the importance of the use of a formal methodology:

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