Projects are executed following a series of independent processes. These processes comprise the project life cycle. A project life cycle begins with scope definition (initiation) followed by planning, execution, and finally delivery (Cadle & Yeates, 2001). An important aspect of project management, which cuts across all these phases, is project evaluation to establish whether various objectives and goals of the different stages of project execution process are realized. This paper develops processes for the networking technology project. Initiating, planning, executing, project monitoring and controlling, and closing are discussed as five essential components of the project processes.
The project initiation phase is the first stage in any project. It also provides a broad definition of a project (Cadle & Yeates, 2001). The current project entails the development and installation of networking technology that is capable of supporting 500 employees to attend to the needs of customers who are situated in various floors for J. Smith & Associates in Scottsdale, Arizona, division, including various satellite divisions that rely on the head office for resolution of customer needs. During the initiation stage, project definition is important to help in determining the appropriate capital and human resource capabilities for the completion of a given project.
The phase involves the establishment of goals, specifications, tasks, and responsibilities in a given project. The goal of the project is to enhance the capacity to resolve customers’ problems and concerns, especially those that relate to the services and products offered by the company. This goal will be accomplished by ensuring full integration of customer-related data such that there is no need to make references to different data concerning one customer, but residing in different computers, whether in the same floor, different floors, or indifferent satellite divisions.
Upon conducting feasibility studies, the initiation stage declares the technology-networking project realistic. The stakeholders exercise their due diligence by deciding that the project needs to proceed. This stage is followed by the issuance of the Project Initiation Project (PID). This document needs to lay out the requirements and purposes for the project so that contractual relationships are based on the terms, conditions, and specifications.
Project planning establishes the road map, which all people within an organization follow. It initiates by the establishment of goals according to the CLEAR or SMART criteria. In this technology-networking project, SMART criterion is adopted. The project will be implemented in the new J. Smith & Associates headquarters in Scottsdale by specialists who will execute the work on its behalf starting from the second week after signing of the contract.
The work will be executed following the specifications provided by the IT department of J. Smith & Associates. It will include the Contractor Designed Portion (CDP). The head of IT who is the administrator of the contract may also issue various instructions during the time of development and execution of the project. DNS servers and bandwidths should have reliability and dependability of more than.0.78 at peak time. At its full capacity, all users should have a waiting time of less than two seconds to access their user types, including DSL, VPN, and domain names. The contractor will submit his or her work breakdown structures as part of the CDP.
Project execution involves the issuing of status reports, updates on project developments, and performance reporting (Zekic & Samarzija, 2012). The actual implementation of the project began with the initiation of hardware and software development/procurement processes. This stage demands a good management process to ensure compliance with the correct software and hardware specifications. Project progress status reports are supplied to the company’s CEO. The reports help in ensuring the project is delivered according to the specifications. Work teams will be developed, resource (time and money) assigned, systems for tracking established, and modification to initial project plans conducted.
Monitoring and Control
During the execution process, management and project monitoring are inevitable to ensure that a project does not slip from the right path. In the case of J. Smith & Associates’ project, monitoring and controlling of the gathered data provide the means of forecasting the capacity of the project to comply with the performance thresholds upon its completion as anticipated in the planning phase. Forecasting will ensure that the project meets the reliability and dependability deliverables. Forecasts will also aid in ensuring that project risks are appropriately mitigated. In this phase, system performance, reliability, and availability tests will be conducted. Where defects are identified, a schedule of defects is prepared and the rectification period agreed with the contractor before a certificate for any complete section can be issued.
When a project is declared complete, project managers compile and release different documents, which detail different resources utilized by the project. The documents are then handed to the sponsors of a project (Dessler, 2004). The technology-networking project then acquires legal and administrative acceptance subject to its capacity to deliver its agenda.
Upon acceptance, the contractor relieves all the staff members of their responsibilities and duties, as the project now no longer exists. The project owners or sponsors take over the project operation. However, Dessler (2004) asserts that it is necessary to train the project owners’ staff on how to operate the project.
Before making a declaration that the technology-networking project has been completed, it is necessary to provide information on the levels to which the stakeholders are satisfied by its actual deliverables. Determination of whether the project meets its specifications that were declared at the definition phase and later reviewed during the execution process will be done. J. Smith & Associates and the contractor may then declare the project closed. A completion certificate is issued to this effect.
Cadle, J., & Yeates, D. (2001). Project Management for Information Systems. Malaysia: Pearson Education.
Dessler, G. (2004). Project Management Principles and Practices. Journal of Project Management, 3(2), 345-357.
Zekic, Z., & Samarzija, L. (2012). Project Management of Dynamic Optimization of Business Performance. International Business Research, 5(12), 99-111.