Project Management is One of Those Things that Looks Easy — Until You Try It.
Advantages of Project Management
Project Management is a structured approach which can provide many benefits to a business:
- Reduce the chance of a project failing
- Ensure a minimum level of quality and that results meet requirements and expectations
- Free up other staff members to focus on their area of work to increase efficiency on the project and within the business
- Make things simpler and easier for staff with a single point-of-contact running the overall project
- Encourage consistent communications among staff and suppliers
- Keep costs, time frames and resources within plan and budget
Importance of Project Management
Projects are naturally chaotic. The primary business function of project management is organizing and planning projects to tame this chaos. It’s hard to think of any complex business endeavor that was ever achieved without organization and planning. Project management is the organization, planning and control of projects.
Any good project has plenty of risk. After all, the nature of business is taking risks. Risk is a fundamental part of business strategy. However, risk needs to be managed. Risk is that chance of a negative event or loss. Uncontrolled risk taking culminates in complications. Project management identifies, manages and controls risk.
Quality is the value of what you produce. There’s not much sense producing something that has no value. Leaving quality to chance is analogous to producing something of random value. Project management identifies, manages and controls quality.
Projects don’t happen in a vacuum. They need to be integrated with business processes, systems and organizations. You can’t build a sales system that doesn’t integrate with your sales process and sales organization. It wouldn’t add much value. Integration is often key to project value. Project management identifies and manages integration.
Projects always happen in an environment in which nothing is constant except change. Projects are always a moving target. Managing change is a complex and daunting task. It’s not optional. Unless you can put your business universe on pause, change happens whether you manage it or not. Project management manages change.
Business initiatives typically encounter regular issues that must be managed to achieve objectives. Project management plays a critical role in identifying and clearing issues.
Projects generate knowledge. Knowledge represents a significant asset for most businesses. However, left unmanaged, knowledge tends to quickly fade. Project management ensures that project knowledge is captured, managed and documented.
Keeping an Eye on the Ball
Projects have a plan, time frame and a budget — or at least they should. For a project to succeed it is critical to monitor, track and report progress. Project management reduces the chance of failure by allowing you to focus on achieving your project goals within the set time and cost boundaries.
The Goal of Project Management is to Produce a Successful End Product.