Project management is the discipline of organizing and managing resources to create a unique product or service, which brings about beneficial change or added value to an organisation. Typically a project is delivered within defined scope, quality, time and cost constraints.
There is no magic formula for ensuring that a project is successful, but there are well proven techniques available to help plan and manage projects.
Good project management helps to ensure that risks are identified and managed appropriately, and objectives and benefits are achieved within budget, within time and to the required quality.
To aid the successful delivery of projects many project management methodologies have been developed which incorporate best practice. The formal project management methodologies combine a framework or approach with a set of project tools and guidelines. Project management methodologies vary in scale and complexity but all are based around a small core of common sense principles.
The project management methodology that is commonly used in the public sector is PRINCE2 (PRojects IN Controlled Environments). This methodology is approved for use in public sector projects and was originally designed to aid the development and implementation of information systems.
The are a number of project management methodologies in use in the world today, however for many PRINCE2 is the standard method for project management, not least because it embodies many years of good practice in project management and it provides a flexible and adaptable approach to suit all needs.
PRINCE2 provides a framework covering the wide variety of disciplines and activities required within a project.
A PRINCE2 project typically has the following qualities:-
- A finite and defined life,
- Defined and measurable business products,
- Activities to achieve the business products,
- Defined resources,
- An organisation structure, with defined responsibilities, to manage the project.