Level: Beginner. Reading time: 5 minutes
So you have your project, which will usually deliver a product or service of some type. However some project types will not deliver a product e.g. those which introduce a new working process, make a change due to legal requirements, or move an office.
Regardless of the type of project you should always have someone to manage it. This could be someone who has been given the project to manage as part of their day job, or more commonly a professional Project Manager.
Why do we need a project manager? Well, without someone who is focussed on managing, controlling and organising the work you hugely increase the risk of failing to deliver, going over budget or being late.
The Project Sponsor will usually define the vision, and document this within a business case or other document justifying why the project should proceed. The sponsor will usually hold the budget as well.
It’s the PM’s job to deliver on this vision, which will include:
- Defining what work (deliverables) needs to be done to deliver the scope
- Managing and controlling the budget
- Producing a schedule (plan) and..
- Organising the sequence of tasks to make sure this is met and the work is efficiently done
- Managing the project team and suppliers to ensure they are able to deliver when needed
- Identifing project risks, and provide ways of dealing with these
- Managing issues and problems as they occur
- Communicating with all interested parties (especially the key people – the stakeholders) before, during and after the project
- Making sure the expected quality is delivered