Chapter 4. Project Planning and the Project Scope
4.6 Key Takeaways
- The project planning phase is often the most challenging phase for a project manager, as the project manager is often required to make educated guesses about the team members, resources required for all the activities, and the schedule and budget needed to complete the project.
- Thorough and proper planning helps project managers and teams have a smoother execution process with a better prediction level and a higher probability of project success. Developing a project management plan involves creating a set of plans to help guide the team through the implementation and closure phases of the project.
- Project managers identify the work to be done for the project in collaboration with the stakeholders including the project sponsor, team members, relevant functional departments of our organization, end-users, customers, regulatory organizations, and government agencies.
- A project manager must assure that requirements are defined in a way that project activities can be determined and sequenced, and hence, a schedule and budget can be created.
- A requirement represents something that can be met by a product, service, or process, and can address a need of the business, person, or group of people. Business requirements are developed based on the business needs (problems or opportunities) that an organization is striving to find a solution to overcome the problem or exploit the opportunity.
- Requirements can be categorized as business, stakeholder, solution, and transition requirements.
- In order to elicit the requirements, a team should dig deep by implementing various techniques such as interviews, surveys, focus group meetings, observations, and document analysis.
- Requirements traceability matrix is used to link the requirements to the activities and deliverables that satisfy them during the project.
- Planning starts with developing a scope management plan that documents how the project and product scope will be defined, validated, and controlled.
- The project scope statement describes the project scope, major deliverables, assumptions, constraints, acceptance criteria, and project exclusions (what the scope doesn’t include).
- The WBS (Work Breakdown Structure) breaks the project scope down into components that can be scheduled, estimated, and easily monitored and controlled. The lowest level of a WBS is called a work package.