Laboratory 1 Initiating a Project

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1 Laboratory 1 Initiating a Project Outline What is a project? What is project management? Initiating a project. Getting Starting with Project 2007? What Is a Project? A project is an activity that has a defined start and a defined finish: produces some measurable result, requires time, money, and resources. Example of projects: building a house, landscaping a parking lot, making a movie. What Is Project Management? Project management actually refers to four activities related to successfully complete a project: 1. Organizing and showing the individual pieces of a project. 2. Showing the timing of tasks: the time required to complete tasks the time tasks start and stop. 3. Identifying and allocating the resources needed to complete a project. 4. Comparing the planned outcome with the actual outcome. Comparisons are usually made in three areas: time spent, resources required, and money spent.

2 Fig.1. Project management phases. Project Initiation Initiation is the time to build a firm foundation for your project. It is the first process in the project scope management knowledge area. The purpose of initiation is to formally launch and authorize a new project or to authorize an existing project to continue into its next phase. Figure 2 shows initiation inputs, tools and techniques, and outputs: Fig.2. Project Initiation. 1. Select a Project - Matching the project to the goals and capabilities of the organization is critical to the success of the project.

3 Guidelines To select a project to initiate, follow these guidelines: Determine the business need, opportunity, or threat the project is intended to address. Inputs to be analyzed include: Description of the product or service of the project. Organization's strategic plan. Any relevant historical information. Organization's project selection criteria. Conduct a feasibility analysis to answer the following questions: Can the project be done given current technological developments? Can the project be done given the organization's technical capabilities? Does the organization have the available resources to successfully complete the project? Has the organization successfully done a similar project in the past? Conduct a cost-benefit analysis to compare the predicted costs and benefits of a project. Does the project meet the financial targets specified in the selection criteria? Apply the organization's project selection criteria to evaluate the project. If the organization has a portfolio of several project alternatives from which to choose, use a project selection decision model to quantitatively compare benefits and risks as well as the value of each project alternative. 2. Project Stakeholders Selection -A stakeholder is a person who has a business interest in the outcome of a project, or who is actively involved on a project. Stakeholders take on various roles and responsibilities on projects. Example Project Stakeholders Example Stakeholder Role and Responsibility Sponsor Signs and publishes the Project Charter. Has ultimate responsibility for project success. Signs off on all planning documents and change requests. Authorizes team to use resources. Champions and mentors the project manager and team. Reviews progress and quality. Cuts through red tape and expedites activities. Customer Takes delivery of the project output. Pays for the project output.

4 Defines needs for the project output. Functional Managers Contribute and control functional resources to project (people, equipment, and so on). Project Manager Works with stakeholders to define the project. Plans, schedules, and budgets project activities with team input. Works with the team to carry out project plans. Monitors performance and takes corrective action. Keeps the sponsor and the stakeholders informed. Requests and documents scope changes. Acts as a liaison between the project team and other stakeholders. Project Team Members Work with the project manager to carry out plans. Interface with sponsor and other stakeholders through the project manager. 3. Project Manager Selection Criteria - Project manager selection criteria are the standards and measurements used to identify the candidate with the right mix of skills, knowledge, attitudes, and experience to fit a particular project. Common categories for project manager selection include: Skills and knowledge. Project management experience. Organizational experience. Personal leadership style. Problem solving skills. 4. Create a Project Charter Once a project has been selected, it is important to let the rest of the organization know about the project and its importance to the organization. The project charter is the most common way for management to communicate the launch of a new project. The project charter is a document that makes the project official and authorizes the project manager to lead the project and draw on organizational resources as needed. Responsibility for the creation of a project charter varies widely from organization to organization. In many companies, the project manager is responsible for its creation. An effective project charter clearly communicates the project's importance to the organization and includes the following elements:

5 The project and authority identification information. 1. Title of the project and the date of authorization. 2. Name and contact information of the project manager. 3. Name, title, and contact information of the initiating authority (usually the customer or sponsor). A clear, concise description of the business need, opportunity, or threat that the project is intended to address. 1. What are the circumstances that generated the need for the project? A summary description of the product or service of the project (refer to the product description which is an input to initiation). 1. What is the required outcome of the project? 2. What are the critical characteristics of the product or service? A description of the project's relationship to the business need it is intended to address. 1. Why is it important to do the project now? 2. How will this project address the business need, opportunity, or threat for which it intended? Any known constraints and/or assumptions. 1. Are there any known time, cost, scope, quality, or resource issues or factors that will limit the way you and your project team can approach the project? 2. Are there any factors or issues that you and your project team will presume to be true, real, or certain in order to begin planning your project? Link: Example Project Charter Example Getting Started with Microsoft Project Microsoft Office Project 2007 is a project management software that contains a set of tools to help managers plan, schedule, and control their projects. This software is used to create an actual project plan that acts as a repository for all project-related information, including the task list, resources, calendar information, and cost data.! When you save a Microsoft Project plan file, the file gets stored with the.mpp extension. Download the sample file ProjectSample.mpp. The Microsoft Project Environment When you launch Microsoft Project 2007, a new blank project file is displayed in the Project application window. In this window, there are various well-organized components

6 that allow users to access the necessary tools and work with this software easily and efficiently. Interface Component The Standard toolbar The Formatting toolbar The Project Guide toolbar The Task pane The entry bar The active pane indicator The view area The table The field heading The Gantt Chart The Timescale The divide bar Description Provides access to shortcut commands used for opening, closing, and printing a project plan. Provides access to frequently used formatting tools, such as font, indent, and field views. Provides detailed instructions and links on the ways to navigate through a project plan. Appears on the left side of the application window and helps you create a new project from scratch, use an existing project, or create a project from a template. Appears between the Project menu and the Gantt Chart view. It allows you to enter and edit information about project tasks. Appears at the left side of any project view, displaying the name of the active view. Displays project data. The Gantt Chart is the default view. Shows specific information about tasks, resources, and assignments as a set of fields in a view. The task Entry table is displayed in the default view. Appears on the grey area at the top of each column. Shows task information as a sheet in a project. Contains the timescale legends for graphically presented tasks or resources. Separates the table and chart portions of a view. It can be dragged to alter what is visible in the view area.

7 Microsoft Project Views Fig.3. The various components of Microsoft Project Microsoft Project 2007 provides various task, resource, and assignment views. These views display an information subset by using different formats and components. View Type Calendar Gantt Chart Network Diagram Task Usage Tracking Gantt Used To Create, edit, show, or review tasks scheduled on specific days, weeks, or months in a calendar. View tasks and associated information in a sheet, and observe tasks and durations over time in a bar graph on a timescale. Use this view to enter and schedule a list of tasks. This view appears by default in Project. Enter, edit, and review all tasks and task dependencies in a project. Use this view to create and fine tune your schedule in a flowchart format. Review, enter, and edit assignments by task. The sheet portion of the view has tasks listed with their assigned resources, and the timesheet portion contains information about the tasks such as work or costs according to the timescale. Compare the baseline schedule with the actual schedule while implementing a project. In this view,

8 you can view the tasks and task information in a sheet, and a chart showing a baseline and scheduled Gantt bars for each task. Resource Graph Resource Sheet Resource Usage View resource allocation in a column graph format. When the Resource Graph view is used in combination with other views, it is useful for finding over allocation of resources. Enter, edit, and review resource information in a spreadsheet format. Review, enter, and edit assignments by resource. The sheet portion of the view contains a list of resources with associated task assignments, and the timesheet portion details the costs or work for the resources on a timescale. More Views Besides the commonly used views, Project provides other options for viewing project information with the help of the More Views dialog box. Using More Views you can observe relationships across variables such as cost, work, and resources in views such as the Relationship Diagram, Detail Gantt, Descriptive Network Diagram, and Resource Allocation. View Formats Views in Microsoft Project use several display formats to present different kinds of information graphically. View Format Description Sheet Graph Diagram Usage Resembles a spreadsheet or a table of information. Provides an illustration of a project's schedule or progress. Displays the tasks in a flowchart format. This format can be helpful in fine tuning your schedule. Lists task or resource data on the left side and shows time-phased data across rows and columns on the right side. Form Presents and parallelly displays detailed information about a task or resource in a structured format.

9 Exercises 1. How to Display an Existing Project Plan in Different Views Procedure Reference Open an Existing Project Plan To open an existing project plan: 1. Launch the Microsoft Office Project 2007 application. Choose Start All Programs Microsoft Office Microsoft Office Project Or, on the desktop, double-click the Microsoft Office Project 2007 icon. 2. Display the Open dialog box. 3. Find the folder that contains the project plan. 4. In the Navigation pane, in the Folders list, click to open the desired folder that contains the project plan. 5. Open the project plan with the.mpp extension. Procedure Reference Display an Existing Plan in Different Project Views To display an existing project in different views: 1. Open the project file you want to view. 2. If necessary, display the View Bar. From the menu, choose View View Bar. Or, right-click the active pane indicator and choose View Bar. 3. Display the project plan in the desired view. From the View menu, choose the desired view option. Right-click the active pane indicator and choose the desired view option. Or, on the View Bar, click the desired view icon. 4. If necessary, display the project plan using a view in the More Views dialog box. a. Display the More Views dialog box. From the menu, choose View More Views. Right-click the active pane indicator, and choose More Views. Or, on the View Bar, click More Views. b. Display the desired view. In the Views list box, double-click the desired view. Or, select the view and click Apply. References 1. Project Management Professional (PMP ) Certification Preparation - (Second Edition), by: Cynosure New Media, Inc. 2. Microsoft Office Project Level 1 B by: Mughil David and Aparna Venkatesan

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