Project Management is a process in which a project manager is accountable for planning, organizing, leading, and controlling all aspects of a project utilizing the assigned resources to achieve project objectives aligned with the organization’s strategic goals.
Before jump into details for Project Management Techniques & Tools, let us do a little review to understand things better.
A project is a dedicated unique asset where the organizational resources are applied to get that product on time, on a budget, and without any non-conformity to pre-defined specifications. On the other hand, project management is when a project manager utilizes the tools and techniques to complete it.
Difference between Tools & Techniques?
Tools are things the project manager uses; in the same way, techniques are how the project manager uses them.
Although it looks slightly different, it is in a practical application of project management.
Let’s dig in further as it will help to understand the main concept in a better way.
A tool is a physical device or software like Primavera P6, Microsoft Project, Asta, or Total Station Machine used by surveyors to check the coordinates to maintain a level.
A technique is a procedure or methodology that you need to follow. For example, there are instructions on using those machines or building a plan/ program for your project.
I hope you are quite clear now. If not, please reread it or ask anything in the comments. Or then go ahead only.
Major Project Management Techniques
Master the techniques to grip on your project at the very beginning. It’s hard to get back on track once you lose it. Experienced project managers know better the value of the initiation stage well. Try to perform all the techniques as soon as possible.
Top Seven project management techniques you must perform from the very start to the delivery of the project.
- Clarity about SOW- Statement of Work
- Clarity about the Characteristics of Deliverable
- Proper Planning & Scheduling
- Perform a Stakeholder Analysis
- Defining Reporting Structure
- Procurement Management
- Change Management
Clarity about SoW- Statement of Work
It is one of the first detailed documents of the project having details of all the project aspects. The major components of SoW are the purpose of project key milestones, deliverables, payments, closure, etc. A clear, concise understanding of SoW is helpful to avoid any scope creep or any gold plating.
Read More: Statement of Work
Clarity about the Characteristics of Deliverable
A deliverable is a unique & verifiable product, service, or result produced by complete project management processes in all phases.
As a project manager, it is your duty to understand the deliverable’s final characteristics with the Client.
Proper Planning & Scheduling
You got the project charter and have all the authority to utilize all project resources provided per your understanding to get optimum results. Grab the SoW, contractual documents to fix the milestones and then prepare the WBS-work breakdown structure to the activity level.
Engage all the project teams to define any constraints and, ultimately, the solution or escalate the issue to PMO or higher management immediately.
Fix the baseline and get it approved by the Client – very important!
Perform a Stakeholder Analysis
This is one of the commonly ignored by most project managers. This is one of the most critical for the success of any project. A stakeholder may have a positive effect as well as a negative effect on the project. A single key stakeholder can ruin all the effort.
Do a careful stakeholder analysis to prioritize and keep on the radar all the time.
Defining Reporting Structure
Reporting defines your communication skills. After stakeholder analysis, defines to whom you need to send what. Define different reporting structures for different stakeholders. Like top management, they only need to know to hit on the millstones and any critical item.
Define detailed reports as per demand from the Client or management – Avoid unnecessary information.
You must know how to kneel this camel, or you are simply out of the game.
Always refer to a contract document before raising a change order or accepting any. Also, read details about change order here Change Orders & Variation Orders Overview.
Project Management Institute also talks about this. You can read here Project Management Techniques.
A project is a dedicated result of project management tools & techniques applications. Their project manager should utilize any techniques for the better interest of his/her organization keeping in view the customer’s acceptance criteria.