Project management is a very important business concept because it is in place to ensure that projects are completed in a timely fashion as well as to the best of the company’s ability. Project Management is basically the discipline of making goals and reaching those goals. Usually, the entire scope of project management is taken care of by an individual project manager.
Definition of a Project
A project can be several things. Generally projects involve engineering or the construction of a product, but they do not always have to. A project is the way through which one will achieve a result. Quite simply, a project is a task and at the completion of the project is the result.
Two Approaches to Projects
There are two approaches to projects and project management. The traditional approach sees the project as a process. There is a beginning, an end, and everything in-between. The non-traditional approach, called the agile software development approach where the project is viewed as relatively small tasks. One approach is to view the entire project (traditional) and the other approach is to view each individual step as a small task (agile software development).
Project Management History
Project management ideas have been around for quite sometime, but it was not isolated until after the Sputnik crisis of the cold war. Project management arose because the United States Department of Defense needed to develop their military faster and more efficiently. In order to do this, the Department of Defense invented the Program Evaluation and Review Technique (PERT). At the exact same time, the DuPont Corporation invented something similar called the critical path method (CPM). These were the foundations of modern project management.
Techniques for Project Management
Project management usually involves setting up a timetable. There are pre-determined goals that need to be met at certain times. Ideally, the project is well organized so that the manufacturer and/or business can plan on the project being completed at a certain time. Project management aims at being efficient, and still producing high quality. By setting specific dates and having the entire project sometimes over-seen by a project manager generally makes employees work more efficiently.
The project manager is the single most important part of project management. The project manager makes sure that everything in the project is moving smoothly. He or she is usually very organized and makes sure that the employees meet the requirements at the specified time intervals. Project managers usually have the most accurate idea of the project destination.
Project management may not be a terribly difficult concept to understand, but it is very important. In any business (especially manufacturers) completing a product or reaching a goal is the life-blood of that business. Project management serves to insure that everyone working on a project is on the same page and understands the goals and timetable. Project management is also an ongoing process throughout the entire project. Project managers serve to ensure that projects run smoothly and are completed efficiently.