Project Execution In A Nutshell

A project is an exercise done once and varies in duration. It is carried out to meet the specific need of an organization, which may be to provide a service, create a product or even to change the process of a business. Execution of a project involves tracking and managing the project. At the start of the project is the use of a PD report (Project Definition Report) to create the project plan.

 

Project-execution-in-a-nutshell

 

The PD is an indication of how to go about the project. It is more of a summary of the project which is the central document that is used to manage the project for its duration. It helps get agreement and acceptance from all members of the team on aspects such as the project milestones, phases and tasks, as well as who is responsible for each task, associated timelines and what deadlines are to be met.

The essence of the PD is to allow for the successful execution of the project. Once done effectively, executing the project follows. The stages of executing the project are Risk Management, Quality Control, Progress Control and change control.

Risk Management

Managing the risk associated with a project is very important as they may impact the successful completion of the project if not factored in. Here, anything that could have a negative impact on the project is put into consideration. It could be in form of illness or attrition which might cause losing a member of the team, annual leave of team members, the possibility of recruiting new members and training them, delay in delivery of necessary equipment or contractors running out of business.

A risk log is used to record and grade risks and carries an associated action plan to minimize the identified risk. Issues of the management is an also to be considered, it refers to concerns related to the project which are raised by any stakeholder.

Quality control

This is mostly the job of the project manager. It involves a series of regular reviews made in a formalized meetings to ensure that the output of the project is reviewed against specific pre-defined standards.

Progress control

This is another responsibility of the project manager. It encompasses monitoring the project and generating regular reports on the progress of the project. The report is so as to be able to relay the progress to the higher management.

There are cases of projects not going exactly as planned, progress control helps keep an eye on the direction the project is headed. It helps monitor the degree to which the project execution follows the plan, also to take appropriate action if there are deviations from the original plan. In essence, project control allows the regular tracking of the project.

Having regular checkpoints while the execution of the project is on helps achieve adequate progress control. This can be made a weekly activity and doing so helps monitor, control and capture statistics of each member of the team. It also helps in making estimates on timeframe for completion and start of the next round of tasks.

Change control

By the nature of most projects never going exactly to plan, changes will need to be made to the length, direction and type of tasks carried out by the team. This has to be fully documented by the project manager in the form of ‘change control’.

Change control involves the project manager in documenting requests for change, identifying the impact on the project if the change is to be implemented (e.g. will it affect the finish time of the project, will the project run over budget, are there enough resources) and then informing all stakeholders of the implications and alternatives that the request for change has identified.

The execution phase ends once the project has achieved its goals and objectives as underlisted by the key success criteria in the PD Report.

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