Project Planning Made Easy: A Guide to Creating a Project Management Plan

The Project Management Plan (PMP) is a document that outlines the plans and decisions for a project that is being executed. It typically includes information on the “4W’s” (Why, What, Who, When) and “1H” (How) of the project.

The PMP is considered a living document because it may need to be updated or changed as the project progresses.

Project management is considered crucial as it helps organizations to effectively and efficiently execute projects.

However, the use of project management tools alone does not guarantee success in a project. Success is more likely if the organization understands the proper use of the tools and has the competence to apply them correctly.

A Glimpse of Project Management Plan

The Project manager develops the project management plan with input from the project team and key stakeholders. This plan is a formal, approved document that outlines how the project will be executed, monitored, and controlled.

It may include summary or detailed information, subsidiary management plans, and other planning documents. The project management plan is used to guide the project team in delivering the intended project scope.

Project Performance

During the project, performance is measured against the performance measurement baseline outlined in the project management plan.

This includes the scope, schedule, and cost baselines. If deviations from the baselines occur, the project manager will make adjustments to correct them. If these adjustments are not successful, formal change requests to the baselines may be necessary.

This project management plan has 3 baselines that will be made into the planning phase:

1. Scope Baseline

The project scope statement describes a product, acceptance criteria, main deliverables, project limitations, assumptions, and limitations about the project.

One thing that must be considered in the blinding of a project is project financing, whether it is limited to direct or indirect project costs.

Indirect costs cannot be traced directly to the project and must be collected and allocated equally. This is due to the many constraints resulting from the limited project budget.

Next, you need to provide a relationship between project components and project results, that is called Work Breakdown Structure (WBS).

Last thing you need to do is WBS Dictionary, that provides detailed information about deliverables and job descriptions for each component in the WBS required to produce each deliverable.

2. Schedule Baseline

Consists of a project schedule with a start date and end date for each activity that has been agreed to be carried out from the start of the project to completion.

3. Cost Baseline

This phase contains the project budget, which is very important in doing a project because it ensures that the project can be completed within a predetermined or agreed budget.

In this case, the project manager will always compare the ongoing projects with the baseline to determine performance and inform stakeholders about project conditions (in scope or out of range).

Any changes to the baseline during the executing, monitoring and controlling period will include these changes in the change control system.

Project Managers

Project managers spend a significant amount of time ensuring baselines are met and that the project sponsor and organization receive the full benefits of the project.

Additionally, they are responsible for controlling the project, ensuring deliverables are on time, and completing the project according to the project management plan.

What Does Project Management Plan Used For?

A well-written and structured project plan document is crucial for gaining a comprehensive understanding of your project.

The project charter, which outlines the high-level strategy for the program, is different from the project management plan.

The project management plan delves into the specific, day-to-day operations of the project, outlining all the steps necessary to achieve the project’s objectives.

The project plan details everything from timeframes, budgets, and resources to deliverables and more, providing a clear roadmap for managing and analyzing the project.

Project Management Plan Components

A project management plan should include an executive summary, timeline or Gantt chart, resource management subplan, risk assessment, communication subplan and team chart. Here is an overview of each of these components:

1. Executive Summary

The executive summary provides a brief overview of the project’s value proposition, the problem it aims to solve, the budget breakdown, key milestones, and deliverables.

2. Timeline or Gantt Chart

Many project management plans include a Gantt chart that illustrates the start and end dates of the project, as well as the start and end dates for each milestone leading up to project completion. It also highlights any dependent or independent activities.

3. Risk Assessment

This section identifies potential obstacles that could negatively impact the project’s completion or the quality of its deliverables. It also outlines the triggers that could cause these risks and strategies for mitigating or avoiding them.

4. Team Chart

The team chart illustrates the individuals involved in the project, their roles, and their communication preferences.

5. Communication Subplan

This subplan outlines the tools used for communication, communication schedules, protocols for stakeholders and team members, and communication preferences.

6. Resource Management Subplan

This subplan lists the resources required to complete the project, such as raw materials, digital tools, and funding.

It includes a breakdown of the materials needed for each milestone, a plan for ensuring their availability, and a way to track resources throughout the project execution.

Tools and Techniques

The manufacture or development of project management requires tools and techniques so that in project management, there are no errors or lack of funds in the manufacturing process.

There are 2 tools and techniques for creating and developing project management, namely:

1. Expert judgment is an assessment technique based on specific criteria or expertise in a product field, a particular discipline, an industry, etc. This knowledge is usually obtained from members of the project team.

2. Facilitation techniques are tools and techniques provided by the project management plan for projects that have been agreed upon.

Other Things You Need to Know

When creating a management plan, several key factors must be taken into account, such as:

1. Project Charters: These are often used as a starting point for initial design and initiating process groups.

2. Outputs from other processes: Outputs from previous processes, such as baselines and subsidiary plans, will be used as inputs in this process.

3. Enterprise Environmental Factors: These include production standards, government regulations, project management information systems, organizational structure, culture, management practices, infrastructure, and personnel administration.

4. Organization Process Assets: This includes standardized guidelines, Work Instructions (WI), performance measurement criteria, project management plan templates, change control procedures, project files from previous projects, historical information, and a knowledge base of lessons learned, and management confirmation knowledge base.

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