Planning & managing projects

Article by Atdhe Buja
Published on
working groups during study in Japan for PMP

The purpose of this article is to provide a clear overview of the project planning and management processes and to see enough the importance of applying guidelines and standards for successful project management. Here is also used some of the experience in project management in our Kosovo country to express a realistic situation of project failures cases and the organization’s impact on the project.

Standards as the main objective are to provide a common language so that buyers, suppliers, developers, managers and technicians involved in software development can understand.

Cases of project failure

We know that the project has its 5 stages of development and rigorously followed by all project managers, such as initiation, planning, execution, development, closure, and monitoring and control. In most cases, projects fail or result in success because of the lack of definite definition of the first phase of planning, where most of the processes should be developed and taken into account in this part of the phase, the third phase of monitoring and control and closure of The project that is not given the importance of execution according to the plan or the adequate project management planning standard by the project manager. Due to the fact that these two phases do not give importance to defining and executing processes, especially at the planning stage, and since all international standards are considered as the most important key to success, the projects escalate in time and cost and do not yield Concrete product or service.

Project planning and management

The rules to be respected for the project management process, from phase 0 (zero) specifications to project closure, are presented below. First, we need to understand the software development models that represent different processes and methodologies that are selected for project development, depending on the purpose and objectives of the project. Referring to the BABOK or ISO / IEC 12207 guidelines, we have the following software development models: Waterfall, V, W, Incremental, RAD, Agile, Iterative, Spiral.

Initiation phase

Represents the process of document preparation that officially confirms the project and the project manager gives authority to use the resources of the organization / institution to develop project activities known as Project Charter. Following this phase, identify stakeholders and document all the information on participation, their impact on the success of the project.


Planning is one of the most important stages of the project and most of the processes are developed during this phase. The success of this phase is to clearly define the project management plan which clearly defines all project work.

Project Management Plan

The content of this document is presented as follows: scope of the management plan, agenda (program), cost, quality, human resources, communication plan, risk, procurement, stakeholder and project, expenditure, agenda, and scope.

Project Scope

Includes the necessary processes to ensure that the project contains all the necessary work and only the job required to successfully complete the project. Scope management is needed to clarify what is involved or not in the project and to control it. Defining the scope is the key to this process describing the product or service by determining which of the requirements collected will be excluded from the scope of the PMBOK project. Creating a Work Breakdown Structure (WBS) is a process of splitting project work into smaller, more manageable, component activities. The work accomplished must be the same as set out in the WBS.

Agenda plan

Time management is an important factor in project implementation. The project agenda is a story about the execution / implementation of the project, a tool in which the activities are carried out, the progress plan achieved is realized and the meaning disseminated to the stakeholders. The purpose of the agenda plan is to realize the project according to the planned activities. Use of the Agenda Plan helps to evaluate the objectives whether they are achieved or not, to see progress and project status and stakeholder information.

Defining activities, evaluating resources for the realization of each activity (material, human resources, equipment), estimating the time needed for work in the realization of individual activities in relation to the resources where the main benefit of all this process is to break down the packets Work in activities that provides an assessment, execution, monitoring and control of project work.

Cost plan

The important thing of this process is to help as a guide on how to manage, projected project costs during its implementation. Resources (number of human resources, equipment / materials), cost (direct / indirect), time required to perform the activity.

Quality plan

Quality assurance means that the project fulfills the requirements for which it has started, this is started by identifying the requirements or standards for project quality by referring to the ISO 9000 & 9001, 2000 Edition standard. The cost of defect prevention is lower than their improvement. Quality is achieved by doing detailed planning and design, but not by examination. ISO / IEC 25010 provides a quality model for software systems and products, this standard of quality assurance sees through 8 key features, most importantly said to be Software Maintenance and Documentation.

Human resource plan

The main goal is to organize, manage and lead the project team. Through this process, the definition of roles and responsibilities in the team is realized.

Communication plan

The communication plan involves the necessary processes to provide timely and timely planning access to project information. Developing a proper approach or plan of communication in the project based on the information and stakeholder requirements and the available assets of the organization provides a successful implementation of the project. In most cases project failure is closely related to the lack of project management communication. Below is an example of a communication plan:

Stakeholder Content Communication format Time
Team members Project progres Email / meeting Weekly

Risk management plan

Risk is an uncertain event or circumstance that may affect the project as in time, expense, purpose, and quality if it occurs. Applying risk management plans helps greatly in identifying, preventing or treating risks and provides risk control options. By identifying all risks both positive and negative in the risk register, it is possible to design reaction strategies against all risks, thereby reducing threats to project objectives. Below is an example of a risk response plan:

Prority Risk Impact Probability Action/ Strategy Response
1.         Finance delay H H Mitigate Finding fonds

Procurement plan

The procurement plan management involves the necessary processes for purchasing or securing the product, the service that is needed outside the project team. Planning at this stage also foresees the choice of the type of contract we want to use:

  • Fixed price contracts
  • Cost reimbursable contracts
  • Time and material contracts.

In procurement decisions does not mean that project managers are not responsible for the work that will be carried out from abroad, they should plan, execute, control and close the procurement process. The contract is a very important tool for managing the procurement plan and should be careful in selecting the type of contract. We need to keep in mind some important points when we are in the procurement process stage, such as: explaining the scope of work that is being carried out from abroad, defining the contents of the contract, prioritizing the price quality.

Stakeholder plan

Given the importance of stakeholder involvement throughout project planning and implementation, it is necessary to develop a proper strategy for effective stakeholder involvement management throughout the project development cycle. In the PMBOK guide is the process (13.1) identifying stakeholders in the initiation process group, meeting stakeholder requirements should be addressed and managed as a key target in the project.

Approval of project management plan

The final step in the preparation of the project management plan is the approval and continuation of the implementation phases.

Execution, Monitoring and control of project

The execution phase, monitoring and control or as known through the definition. Project Operation Processes, contains a long process of time that starts from initiating, scheduling, and executing and closing processes by always using the PDCA method. The purpose of all this important phase for successful project implementation and conforming to standards is to control and monitor project progress in relation to the plan and at certain times when it is necessary to intervene to eliminate / prevent problems. All this stage to accomplish is assisted by many tools, analysis techniques, various project measurements and work such as: Work Performance Data, variance analysis, EVM, Pareto Diagram, CCB etc.

In most cases before we know the projects fail to fail because of ignoring the execution phase, monitoring and project management control according to plan or standard.

Project closure

This stage implies closing the procurement process, closing the project or phase. At this stage it is necessary to prepare a checklist if all service requests are made to the client, maintenance requirements are considered, the document is officially accepted, the updated project management document and the latest version, etc. .

Organization impact on project management

The project and project management occupy an environment that is broader than the project itself. When the project involves outsiders, the project is influenced by more than one organization. Therefore, the project manager should understand that the model and culture of different organizations / institutions can affect the project. The project manager should know which individuals in the organization are decision-making or influencing and collaborate with them to enhance the project’s success opportunities. The success of project management depends largely on the effective communication model in the organization / institution.

Stakeholders may be an individual, group or institution that may influence, influence or perceive themselves that may be affected by the decision, activity, or outcome of the project. The project manager should manage these impacts from different stakeholders in relation to project requirements to ensure a successful outcome. The project outcome must always meet customer requirements.

To ensure the success of the project, the methodology standards should be established / applied, and the best known in modern project management is PMBOK 5th.

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