Project Phases At A Glance
A new project is pending – first ideas come up, the order is approved and planning begins. In order to get an overview of the overall situation in the project, large projects in particular are divided into individual project phases. Over time, these phases are mapped in a project phase model.
Why Project Management Should Set Up A Project Phase Model
The project phase model not only provides clarity about tasks, processes, project progress and schedule , but also offers an overview of the overall situation and all relevant project points . The visualization is a first orientation in the project – especially those involved in the project benefit from the easily understandable overview. In addition, milestones in the project phases help to keep an eye on the progress of the project.
Phase Models In Practice
There is no such thing as a “correct” project phase model – in project management there is a selection of different models that fit the respective project. We show you common models from practice and explain their differences.
1. What Is A Project Phase?
Challenging projects are part of everyday work in many companies. That is why complex projects are divided into several phases and work packages. The advantage: You get an orderly overview of upcoming tasks. The whole project seems more achievable.
Five Classic Project Phases In Project Management
The idea of a project is fixed and the order is released: In the first phase of a project, project goals are recorded, a start and end time are set and a project organization is set up.
The second phase defines basic key figures and available resources. The project plan supports comprehensive planning: project data and description, success criteria and milestones are recorded. In a further step, a stakeholder , SWOT and risk analysis helps to identify internal and external factors.
The project is put into practice: Many teams start with a kick-off meeting to ensure successful admission . Task management then regulates who takes on which task packages.
In the project control phase, planned values are continuously compared with the actual values during project implementation. These include: deadline monitoring, project documentation , progress control and quality assurance as well as a continuous project report .
Project completion is the last phase in project management. The finished product is handed over, experiences are exchanged and saved in the project retrospective, the project documentation – keyword lessons learned – is finalized or archived. The team is then disbanded.
In a phase model or plan, these project phases are delimited over time and displayed graphically, as well as provided with corresponding milestones.
2. Project Phase Models In Project Management
Project phase models differ primarily in their structure and the varying division of the individual project phases. The models range from a simple structure through a three or more stage representation to models with integrated loops.
Simple Phase Model – Often Not Sufficient In Everyday Project Work
The simple phase model is the simplest representation of a project. It has the advantage that the various phases are clear and easy to understand , as they build on one another. It is used for particularly simple or small projects where there are few tasks and processes. Here a new phase begins as soon as the previous one is completed. Since phases often run parallel in everyday project work, this model is often not sufficient.
The Parallel Phase Model Prevents Idling
With the parallel phase model , the rigid process of the project phases is eliminated. This means that a project can be in more than one phase – an ongoing project phase does not have to be completed before the next one starts. Since project participants often work in different phases, idle time is prevented so that time is not wasted unnecessarily.
Iterative Project Phase Model Integrates Loops
Between home office and remote work, agile project management is also becoming increasingly popular in companies. In contrast to classic project management, interdisciplinary project teams work in time-limited cycles (so-called sprints) in order to react more flexibly to new developments.
This agile way of working is supported in the iterative phase model – also known as loop representation. Project managers can continue to react proactively to changes and thus implement customer wishes in a more targeted manner. Because certain phases are run through several times, changes or errors can be corrected more quickly.
3. With PM Software, A Separate Phase Model Becomes Superfluous
Now you might be thinking, “Wait a minute, now the project phase model is suddenly superfluous?” … Yes! When it comes to project management with PM software, there are easier ways of clearly mapping project phases.
Phase-Oriented Project Structure Plan
The project structure plan is a popular tool in project management and the basis for the entire procedure in the project. He creates a logical order of tasks and brings an overview to the project.
In a phase-oriented project structure plan , the top level is divided according to the individual project phases, e.g. B. “preparation”, “implementation” and “follow-up” divided. The levels below can be structured according to functions or objects, for example. At a glance you get tasks or task packages that are pending in the current project phase.
4. Conclusion: Mixed Project Phase Models Are Often Used In Everyday Project Work
Project phase models are there to make projects more tangible . Despite the simple implementation, the most important key points of a project are recorded at a glance. In practice, there are mainly mixtures of the different models tailored to the respective project.