The project management or project control is a step aiming to structure, ensure and optimize the good progress of a sufficiently complex Projet to have:
to be planned in time: it is the object of the Planification,
- to be budgeted for (prior study of the costs and advantages or incomes n the other hand awaited, of the funding sources, study of the operational and financial risks and the various impacts…),
- to control and control the risks,
- to reach the level of quality wished,
- to utilize many recipients: it is the object of the organizations which identify Maîtrise of work and Maîtrise of work (see also functions of control of work),
- responsabiliser the Project manager or the Directeur of project, to set up a Steering committee,
- to follow operational and financial stakes important,
The objective must be specified in a clear, quantified and dated way. The result must be in conformity with standards of quality and performances preset, for the lower costs and within the best possible time.
When the project management relates to a whole of projects contributing to the same objective, one speaks about Gestion of program.
What is what a project?
See also: Project
One calls project a finalized whole of activities and actions undertaken with an aim of meeting a need defined within allowed time and the limit of the allocated budget appropriation.
A project is a temporary action with a beginning and an end, which mobilizes resources identified (human, material, equipment, raw materials, informational and financial) during its realization, which has a cost and is the subject thus of a budgeting of means and of a Bilan independent of that of the company.
The awaited results of the project are called “deliverable”.
A project, as soon as it is sufficiently complex and has important issues, consists of a whole of actions aiming at a defined, known and measurable result. The project is limited in time and always comprises a concept of innovation and change.
- of the project-work whose result is single (a bridge, a Logiciel),
- and project-product (a new car model, a new drink) whose objective is the development of one or a range of product (S) or service (S), which will be diffused with more or less large scales.
A project can also consist of an internal operation of rationalization complexes, for example the setting in phase of the operation of two companies after their fusion, even of two states as after the German Réunification.
The project is an extraordinary objective (in the literal sense of the word) which combines four aspects:
- Functional: answer to a Technical need
- : respect of the specifications
- Times: respect of the expiries
- Costs: respect of the budget
The project can also belong to a more complex unit, often called program . The program recovers then the whole of the components making it possible to lead to the end result in all its dimensions: Legal, Marketing, Data-processing, technique, staff training, Organization, Logistic, Communication, etc…
The project management is defined by PMBOK, in English Project Management Body Of Knowledge who defines the principal rules governing this field.
Cutting of a project
The project can be broken up into batches or sub-projects or into building sites , in order to obtain subsets whose complexity is more easily controllable.
The cutting of a project in controllable subsets is essential with the control of the project and thus with its good result and its success.
The project division also makes it possible to proceed more easily to its Planification.
The approach by stakes is an act of direction, which makes it possible to structure the project in time well, while bringing there many guarantees for the project superintendent: its progression calendairement is followed better.
The stakes make it possible to give a progress report on the project and to begin the following phase only if all is well. The decisions actées at the time of this review of phase shift are stable elements on which can be built the continuation of the project. The marking out is worried less contents of each phase, than of the appreciation of its result, where the customer (or building owner) is brought to decide.
Preliminary Phase : the reflection on the interest of the project in itself, in strategic term of opportunity, according to the way in which the future…
- Jalon of Launching of the project presents: one decides (at the “political” level) that it is necessary to launch a specific project, and one devotes to it a project manager, a team, means, a person in charge and a budget.
- Phase of Expression of the need: the definition of until one waits (awaited functions), the perimeter, it on what one will evaluate the project, which is important and what is it less.
- Stake of Validation of the need: the customer validates the expression of his needs (thus the evolutions in the approach of the needs could be traced and will justify possible adjustments of the draft plan), it are the bases on which the project will be built.
- Phase of Feasibility : the study of what is technically and economically feasible. Consultation of the possible project superintendents, comparison of the technical and financial proposals of the possible realizers.
- Stake of the Choice of the solution : signature of the contract which specifies what will be made and the manner of doing it.
- Phase of Development : the project superintendent coordinates work on the “product paper”, to specify what must be made to the last bolt.
- Stake of Launching of the building site (possible): when the “product paper” is sufficiently defined, one can take stock before launching the initial work.
- Phase of Realization: the building site is launched, work advance to transfer the “product paper” in reality.
- Phase of Checking (which can start very early, on the “product paper”): on the real product or the product paper, one checks (or one calculates) that the awaited characteristics are well with go (with the possible variations, that it is then necessary to manage).
- Stake of Qualification : after checking, the definition of reference of the product is the good one and will not be modified any more (at least, not also easily).
- Stake of Delivery (and receipt) still called Acceptance: one gives the product between the hands of the customer, who becomes owner about it (and can issue reserves on the noted variations). It is the end of the project itself.
- Production run , which generally starts with the lifting of the reserves, and sees the end of the contractual relation.
Some complementary remarks:
- the names can be very variable from one culture to another;
- the phases and stakes are sometimes intermingled, each time it is necessary a little to prepare work of the following phase, to balance what was not finished at the time of the preceding phase, to even correct what was considered to be unsatisfactory.
- There are of course adaptations according to whether it is a question of assembling a suspended bridge, an opera, a party… For example, for a Turn operator, it is about a performance of service, whose customer consumes the product progressively his production.
Cutting in phases
See also: Development cycle, Cycle out of V
A method commonly employed in order to lead a Project to its term by respecting the requirements of quality, cost and time is the project division in phases. Each phase is accompanied by a fine of stage intended to formalize the validation of the phase run out before passing to the following phase.
Usually, the following phases are found (but names vary according to the context and the methods):
Preliminary study (or precondition known as also of feasibility or of opportunity)
This stage, the goal is to determine the perimeter of the project and its feasibility, i.e. to define what will be included in the objectives of the project, which will not be it and if the project must be launched well.
On the one hand, it is estimated if the awaited benefit will be in proportion of the committed investments and the estimated cost of the project. For many projects, one determines the Return on investment thus discounted (or more exactly: payback). It should however be noted that all the projects inevitably do not aim at reaching a financial profit: one can launch a project with an aim of improving the service with the users of an administration, or to improve the social climate of a company - in these cases, the return on investment is not necessarily quantitative.
In addition, the feasibility study also determines if the organization is well able to conclude the project its. One seeks in particular to know if it has of competences, the resources and the required funds.
- risks to make: which are the difficulties for which one has to expect in the course of the project and the means of preventing them,
- and risks not to make: which are the stakes for the company or the organization if the project were not launched and were not carried out in the long term.
The project is truly launched only if this first phase is conclusive.
Launching or initializationThis phase of launching is the occasion to define:
- the organization of the project, i.e.:
- the composition of the project team to be mobilized,
- various experts to request, if necessary the Subcontracting to which to appeal,
- the Directing Project manager or of project to be named, the letter of assignment to be written,
- the Steering committee to be constituted.
- the planning of the tasks to be realized with their scheduling, their duration, their assignment of resources and average the techniques necessary, the various stakes (Bar chart, PERT).
- possible technical environment to prepare.
- the budget of the project to be engaged.
- means of controlling the results.
General study and detailed study (or specifications)
See also: Specification
The goal of this phase is to conceive or to specify what must be carried out or manufactured to achieve the goal (one writes possibly a Schedule of conditions). These studies associate the Maîtrise of work and the Maîtrise of work.
One speaks sometimes about expression of needs or general specifications when these deliverable “functional” and is expressed by the users, and one holds then the term of specifications (or specifications detailed) to more technical documents, or in any case which detail more the inner working of the awaited software.
Seek and determination of solutions for the manager of projectThis phase consists in studying various solutions or technical and functional architectures according to constraints of competences, equipment, times as well as financial aspects and marketing. The choices must be then validated by the realization of models or prototype and possibly the launching test. The measured variations make it possible to rectify the choices.
In the computing projects, this phase takes into account the concerns of urbanization and architecture.
At the time of a choice of existing solution on the market (case of the software package in particular), this phase is articulated around a Invitation to tender.
Realization and control or manufactureIt is at the time of this phase that the project is carried out or manufactured, i.e. the tasks making it possible to implement the new product, well or service are carried out. In the computing projects, it is this phase which allows the construction of the Logiciel. To control the advance of these tasks and the respect of the deadlines one uses management tools of project in particular software which allows, in the event of delay or going beyond of the deadlines, to plan the continuation of the project again.
In this phase the tests are also carried out: unit Test, Integration test, Benchmark.
ReceiptAs of the provision or the reception of deliverable, it is necessary to carry out checks so as to control the conformity of the result manufactured with the order which had been placed at the time of the specifications. Controls are carried out in the form of rigorous tests starting from the books of tests which were prepared.
At the conclusion of the phase of receipt an official report of final acceptance is signed.
According to the complexity of the project, sequences of total checking can prove to be necessary.
When it was called upon a subcontracting, the end of the receipt marks a big step because it starts the period of legal guarantee during which the applicant can be turned over against his person receiving benefits.
Diffusion or deploymentThe product is placed at the disposal of the market or of the users, it is here that enters in action the political of Communication and in a manner more general than one indicates by the accompaniment of the change.
Follow-up of the performances and qualityThe tools of follow-up were established as of the preparation of the project, at the same time as were defined the objectives of performance and quality.
Cutting in tasksAnother manner (complementary) of approaching the cutting of a project in elementary subsets consists in cutting out the project in subsets of activity to simple function: the tasks .
Each task is characterized by raw materials which are necessary for him: they are the entering or preliminary objects (a document, a specification, a machine placed at the disposal, a standard, a trained and operational operator, a test deck,…) and it provides one or more products results, they are the outgoing objects or deliverable (a Logiciel, an advertizing plate, a support of training course, a data sheet,…). The entering objects can be already at disposal or are the outgoing objects of another task intended to produce them. The outgoing objects can be employed again by another task.
This method (carried out for example by interviews of the various implied actors) makes it possible to highlight the preparatory tasks and to materialize the dependences between tasks (for example to formalize a Réseau PERT).
Cutting in activities WBSA third approach, known under the name of method WBS (Work Breakdown Structure), carries out a static cutting (analytical) in activities (one finds here a concept close to that of tasks ) with entries and results identified as well as a responsibility entrusted to a named person, and this up to the level of decomposition optimal necessary for:
- to control the duration of an activity,
- to know the required resources,
- to know the cost of an activity.
See also: Management
The led project, in general, is entrusted to a Directeur of project or a coordinator of project, or to a Project manager. This person in charge of the project returns account to a Steering committee.
With regard to the psychosocial aspect of the management of a project team, Maders distinguishes five successive phases:
- the stage of observation corresponds to the meeting of the members of a project team.
- the stage of cohesion must make it possible to constitute a welded team.
- the stage of differentiation makes it possible to benefit from the differences between the members of the team.
- the stage of organization uses the traditional techniques of the project management to formalize the stock management, to plan and control the risk.
- the stage of production describes the effective operation of the project team. It is on this level that the various theories of the Management and the Leadership are most relevant.
Approaches by reason for designThe project management is a difficult art in which the Project manager must improvise as well as possible. Also, to decrease the risks or to maintain the Entropy project on a reasonable level, the experiment highlights large Principe S. Alan Davis indexed 201 principles which apply to the software projects.
In addition, James O. Coplien offers an aspect of the Phénomène of Project management centered on the practices. A practice is a formal application of a principle which is comparable with a Motif of design used in software Développement. In this direction, the method Extreme programming proposes it also practices such as:
- the Programming in binomial,
- the Test in first,
- … as well as ten others.
These practices come to provide guides around selected organisational cutting. According to
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