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Project Management: Approaches for Decision Making

Assignment Details: 

In this assignment, the teams select a decision-making situation where a decision should be made about a project. In this assignment, the team needs to study the literature and find the best practice to analyse the situation. The team should also consider, other than cost consideration, to deliver a project from the perspective of sustainability. Further details on the assignment will be provided in the OLS.


Answer


Project Management

Introduction

Today, with advent of new technologies, it is found that the organizations need to implement project management tools and techniques through which they can achieve desired success in a given work environment. They need to overcome workplace challenges, manage workplace conflicts and subsequently achieve objectives of the organization (Kalogerou & White, 2014). However, they need to deploy each of the stages of project management so that all the tasks assigned are completed within the timeframe and as per the budget directed toward each task. 

This paper will discuss project management initiatives and approaches in the organization. It will consider a situation of decision-making wherein the tools of project management will assist in making the right decision. However, it is advised to the team taking decision to implement performance measures through which they can evaluate the decision. 

It is important to follow the project charter once the project gets initiated in a given working environment. Also, it is the responsibility of the project management team to check and make sure that all the stages of project management are successfully managed. Only then the decision taken for the purpose of given project will work as per the expectations.

Phases of Project Management

There are several phase of project management that include - conception and initiation, definition and planning, launch and execution, performance and control, and project closure. Each of these phases is associated with certain activities that need to be completed during the given phase. For example, the conception and initiating stage will comprise of preparing project charter and project initialization activities. 

Similarly, in the definition and planning stage, the focus will be on activities related to scope defining, budget preparation, work breakdown structure, Gantt chart, and risk management. The launch phase will comprise of status tracking activities and defining Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) (Ge & Ho, 2014). The next phase of performance and control will comprise of quality deliverables, and measuring overall performance. 

project management


Finally, the project closure phase will discuss reporting phase of the project. It will determine up to what extent the project is successfully completed in a given scenario. The role of the project manager or the team leader is vital across the entire given project. He first performs important activities that include - estimating data, expert judgment in decision making, bottom-up estimating, and carrying out alternative analysis. 

Also, his role is important as he needs to manage the entire team in a given working environment. The project manager needs to prepare the design of the project. Based on which, the team will conduct developmental activities associated with the project. He then needs to analyze each of these activities carried out and then evaluate the overall performance.

The project manager also needs to overcome conflicts between the group members to take important decisions for the project. He first needs to identify the source of conflict and accordingly determine ways through which conflicts can be managed. Further, he can implement conflict resolution techniques such as - team collaboration, conflict resolution, conflict management, conflict avoidance, and compromise strategies so that not only the conflicts can be resolved but also the work assigned can be completed within given stipulated time. 

To enhance decision making and also to improve efficiency of all the project process, the organizations have implemented application systems in the organization. They first list down the needs of the project, checked for project management techniques and then complete them through the use of technological platforms (Ge & Ho, 2014). 

project manager competencies

It thereby helps in saving time, efforts, and extra costs associated with given project processes in a given work environment. However, one should note that the project manager should have different competencies such as - planning, goal setting, communication, judgment, decision making, and motivation. It will thereby assist him in achieving desired project management goals at the given workplace in the organization.


Analyzing Decision Making Situation

In a given case scenario, the team needs to take decision on whether they should implemented Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) systems in the organization or not. At present, due to data redundancy and manual working approach, the company is facing a lot of issues (Godlewski, Lee, & Cooper, 2012). 

The productivity of the employees has decreased and also they are not able to deliver within the given time. Further, there are several confiding issues due to data redundancy in the system. As a result, it becomes difficult both for the project leader and the manager to handle the given project. 

There are already costs issues associated with the given project. It is thereby recommended by the project team to implement ERP system in the organization and achieve the associated advantages. It will not only reduce the workload, but will overcome data redundancy problems in the organization (Tsolas, 2013). 

Further, it will improve forecasting techniques of the organization and as a result they will be able to complete the assigned tasks before time. The team will be able to collaborate with other departments of the organization that will subsequently improve scalability of the project as well. 

With the help of ERP systems, the project team will be able to save on the costs and will also be able to streamline all the processes in the organization. Further, they will be able to integrate all the business processes and will subsequently improve the reporting structure of the organization (Tsolas, 2013). 

The employees will be following all the respective regulatory compliance that will improve the efficiency of the project. Thus, before taking the final decision, the project manager and his team need to understand the problem at the workplace. They need to eliminate unimportant alternative decisions and focus on the most feasible decision. They can discuss the options with the team and carry out feasibility analysis of each of them. 

They can further deploy project management structured approach to arrive at the most optimized decision. Finally, they can select the best solution and apply it in their project plan. However, they need to monitor and evaluate the performance and modify the project management strategies wherever required. They can communicate about the decision to the team members, project manager, and the top-level management to avoid any communication gaps in the future. It will subsequently help them in taking the decision on the given problem of installing ERP system in the organization.

Project Management Techniques

There are first project management methodologies through which the entire project can manage. These include - waterfall model, critical path method, critical chain project management, agile method, Scrum, Kanban, and Adaptive Project Framework (Tsolas, 2013). There are then project management techniques available for completing the assigned tasks of the given project. 

These include - planning the project, work breakdown structure, schedule planning, financial planning, and work authorization success. The planning of the project approach will focus on several aspects of the project such as scope, budget, schedules, and technical objectives. The work breakdown structure on the other hand will determine all the work activities and will divide them based on the different phases of the project (Ren, Cao, & Han, 2015). 

Each of these tasks can then be completed through scheduled planning approaches such as Gantt charts, Line of balance method, and Critical Path Method. Further, the team also needs to consider aspects such as financial planning as every project will be related with availability of funds, capital investment, profit plans, and retention of project services.

It is further important to note that there are several risk factors associated with the given project. For example scope is limited, costs forecasts are inaccurate, change management is overloaded, and communication gaps, lack of resources, and lack of stakeholders approach in completing the given project. 

Thus, it is important for the project management team to understand the problem, identify the needs and requirements, define the constraints, validate operational mechanisms, integrate support, and sanction the final design to complete the project on time. It is thereby important to implement several concepts of project management that will assist in managing the project successfully and thereby achieving the objectives as per the expectations (Brookfield et al., 2014).

Conclusion

Project Management is a discipline and a concept as well wherein the project managers need to understand the need of the project and then apply project management methodologies and techniques (Renuka, Kamal, & Umarani, 2017). This report provided valuable information on project management techniques and approaches in a given workplace environment. Second, it also identified major principles related to project management. 

Further, it discussed the case scenario of taking effective decision with the help of project management techniques. The project managers are thereby recommended to follow these instructions and complete the assigned project on time. Also, they need to overcome the challenges, issues, gaps, and other hurdles that can disrupt the path to achieve desired success. 

He needs to improve communication, manage the team, manage conflicts, overcome workplace challenges, and subsequently take effective decision through a team-based and collaborative work approach to achieve desired outcomes. He then needs to monitor the project in the post-project implementation phase to ensure successful running of a given project.

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