Chapter 4. Project Planning and the Project Scope
4.0 Learning Objectives and Overview
- Describe the importance and purpose of project planning.
- Identify the basic processes and activities required in the planning phase.
- Explain the main components of requirements elicitation.
- List the main components of a project management plan.
- Describe the process to develop a detailed description of the project.
- Elaborate on the WBS structure to subdivide project deliverables and project work into smaller, more manageable components.
- Practice on Microsoft Project to create a WBS.
After the project charter is approved by the sponsor, the project manager is appointed as the primarily responsible authority to utilize the budget and resources, define the primary components of the project such as scope, cost, schedule, quality, and risks, manage, control and monitor project activities, and finally close the project. From now on, the project manager is ready to enter the second phase in the project management life cycle. This is referred to as the planning phase, which directly follows the initiation phase. The planning phase involves creating a set of plans to help guide the team through the execution and closure as well as the monitoring and controlling which occurs throughout the whole project. The plans created during this phase help the project manager and the team manage triple (iron triangle) constraints, which are scope, schedule and cost, and other constraints such as quality, resources, and risks, and other related issues and knowledge areas (e.g., integration, procurement, stakeholders, communication). They also help the project manager lead the project team and work with external suppliers to ensure that the project deliverables can be delivered on time, within budget, and with the desired functionality.