Managing projects effectively is like directing a play. There is a lot of effort “behind the scenes” to make the show happen. Directors need to select the right actors, rehearse and work with designers and technicians. But what happens if the play is a failure? Then all the pre-planning and rehearsals no longer matter. Project managers face the same challenge.
Project managers are great planners and communicators. They specialize in coordinating tasks across teams, developing processes, and tracking progress. But if the project is not implemented correctly, all the hard work goes to waste. Running as planned is often more complicated than you might think. Don’t waste your work. We’ve prepared this project implementation manual that covers everything project managers need to know.Are you ready to take your work—from planning to execution and beyond—to the next level?
Understanding implementation in project management
Leading the successful implementation of a project requires understanding all phases of project management. Some project managers claim there are five distinct phases — while others say there are three. The number of phases depends on the type and complexity of the project. To explain better, we will deal with the five phases. Each of them has a specific set of requirements that help guide the project through to its implementation.
In the first phase, project owners and managers launch, name, and define a project. In some cases, stakeholders carry out feasibility studies and analyzes to understand its complexity.
Project managers present the scope, cost, required resources, and potential risk of projects. They also define the goals, timeline, deadlines, and how the team and stakeholders will keep up to date.
Implementation consists of executing the project plan. At this point, the deliveries are ready, and the technical implementation is in progress.
Monitoring and control phase:
This phase runs parallel to the implementation. Here you assess whether the final product meets the objectives of the initial project plan. Use predefined metrics. You will also assess key performance indicators such as progress, cost and time. If results deviate from planning, use corrective measures to get the project back on track.
While some projects will continue as new processes, others will come to an end. Projects that end must have a formal closure. This is where you finalize work with external providers and reward team members. Without clear goals, planning, resources and communication, implementation is unlikely to succeed. To avoid failures, take the time to map out what needs to be done in each phase.
2 types of bottlenecks in project execution
Bottlenecks are issues that arise during the course of the project—such as the introduction of new constraints or the loss of a necessary resource—and delay its implementation. They can be short term or long term.
This could be a technical failure, a supply chain mishap, staff shortages, or the absence of a key project partner. Often, short-term bottlenecks arise unexpectedly but are corrected as planning improves. Some quick ways to improve your processes are:
Elimination of non-essential steps
Using automation platforms to perform more time-consuming manual work
Establishing better communication to avoid misunderstandings and misalignments
Long-term bottlenecks: These pose a serious threat because they are more difficult to resolve. Capacity is the most common long-term bottleneck. When employees working on projects have many other tasks to manage, they have less time to focus on project-related tasks. A real life example? Companies that want to release more features but don’t add programmers will face a bottleneck when employees reach capacity.
Unresolved bottlenecks sometimes compromise the entire project. The key to avoiding them is predicting their emergence. While you are in the planning phase of your project, take some time to think about potential short-term and long-term bottlenecks. Think about what solutions will be needed to avoid or contain them.