A project can be defined as a unique and short term or temporary duties which in most cases are implemented to fulfill a particular strategic goal of a company or an organization. Always a project is a line or series of assignments or duties which in the long run turn into the creation or completion of many new products, initiatives and activities by a certain end date. Projects should be differentiated form operations as operations are normal duties carried on an individual in the event of doing his or her work. There can never be a project twice. A project however small it may be it requires a project manager. Project manager therefore use their skills, knowledge, tools and methodologies to; identify the objectives, requirements and limitations of a project, to ensure that there is coordination of needs and expectations, to ensure there is planning, executing and controlling of the tasks, deliverables and tasks of a project and lastly to close the project when finished and accrue the necessary information (Swalbe, 2007).
Any project comes along with various demands. Project managers are therefore responsible for integrating and balancing competing demands in order to implement every aspect of success without failure. The competing demands include; project score refers to the identification of the particular work to be carried out on a project. The other is project time which entails putting up start and finish time and it will also include any interim deadlines for various phases, or development. Project cost involves making calculations and keeping track of the project’s expenditure and more budget. Project’s human resources involve hiring members who will carry out the tasks. Project procurement involves purchase of project materials to help in doing the job. Project communication s another competing demand for the project as it entails conveying updates, assignments, reports and any other information to all the members of the project. Project quality is the identification of the acceptable standards of quality or output for the project objectives and goal. The last competing factor during a project is the project risk which is includes the analysis of potential risks within a project and response planning.
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In my project there are three major competing factors which include cost, time and schedule or scope (Marchewka, 2009).
As from the above triangle it posses that if one increase the schedule, then the cost side of the diagram will increase too. Likewise if the project time is reduced then the project is brought to a finish time and therefore the schedule is decreased. On the other hand the costs are increased due to the addition of resources so as to finish the project very fast. The additional resources may include hiring of more labor than earlier planned for. For my project to successes I have to overcome the three competing demands. For each of the three variables I have a target at the begging of the project. I had planned to complete the project in five months, and spend a total of $ 8,000 on the entire project. At first I viewed these goals as discrete; along the way of the project I made many decisions which affected the accomplishment of the goals. To this effect I had to increase my budget so as to beat time and schedule goals or I had to decrease the schedule in order to meet cost or budgetary allocation and time.
Projects involve a number of uncertainties and also limited resources, therefore projects rarely get completed in accordance to the discrete time, cost and schedule goals as originally set out. It is however, more realistic to set out to set out an array of goals. As for my project I will have a range of time like five to ten months to fish the project. For the project cost, instead of hard line of $8,000 the amount will be flexible in that it will range from $ 8,000 to about $ 12,000 to completely finish the project. These project goals are then realistic as if I do not meet the highest expection then I will be in a good position to meet the average or the least expectation. The bottom line will be that my project is finished on time.
Any project has its challenges or competing factors which may affect the completion of the project. When undertaking a project of any kind and magnitude then one should consider and make a decision on which of the three constraints are important (Garton & McCulloch, 2005). For example if time is very important then the initial costs and schedule are changed to suit the new time line. If the schedule goals are more vital then cost and time of the project should be adjusted to include the changes. In the case where the case where both the cost and time goals are important then the schedule has to be flexible. If it a sponsored project then the stakeholders may want to specify the time, schedule and cost goals then the project manger has to ensure that the three are well balanced all along the project.
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Though the three variables describes the relationship between the three elements (time, cost and scope/schedule), significant roles can be played by other elements. Quality is taken as another key element especially in customer or sponsor satisfaction. A project manager therefore has to ensure that he or she communicates with the sponsor.
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