Zayed University’s Financial Support Project Management

Project Management Fundamentals

The success of a given project depends on the efforts and competencies of the manager. A project manager should organize, guide, and empower members of the team to deliver the intended outcomes. The team should be equipped with the right resources and guidelines throughout the phases of the project. Competent managers create a vision and communicate it to every stakeholder.

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The project’s objectives should act as guiding principles throughout the process. There are key management competencies or knowledge areas that must be developed by the project leaders. These fundamentals include integration, quality, scope, time, human resource, communication, procurement, and risk management (Junior & Carvalho 2013). The purpose of this paper is to give a detailed analysis of a project that has been undertaken at Zayed University.

Selected Organization and Project

The selected organization for this exercise is Zayed University. This institution has been on the frontline to develop powerful initiatives and programs that can support the changing needs of its students. The institution attracts many learners from different parts of the United Arab Emirates. The university embraces new practices to promote quality and engage in continuous improvement. The approach explains why the institution remains a leading player in the country and across the region. The organization has been adopting new ideas depending on the changes experienced in the global academic environment (Lehmann 2016).

Zayed University is looking for new ways to meet the needs of students who need financial support. The Smart Financial Aid Application (SFAA) is a project that has been ongoing in the institution within the last year. The main purpose of the app was to transform how needy students used to apply for financial aid. Initially, parents or students were required to collect various forms from the institution and return them after several days. The process used to be tedious for many individuals living in different regions across the nation (Silvus & Schipper 2014). Many students were unable to get any form of assistance due to the complexity associated with the application process. The success of the SFAA program, therefore, explains why it has been selected for this discussion.

Fundamentals of Project Management

Project Approval

A formal selection process was undertaken before the SFAA project was approved by the learning institution. The first plan was to examine the university’s guidelines needed whenever planning to implement a new project. The project manager was keen to focus on the institution’s procedures to ensure every step was completed as required. The manager focused on the formal selection process before announcing the project’s mission.

During the process, the manager received the right information from various decision-makers in the university. Issues such as cost, features, support systems, and resources needed to sustain the project were clearly outlined to make the selection process successful (Silvus & Schipper 2014). These initiatives were undertaken to support the formal selection process. This move made it possible for the involved personnel to gain approval from the key decision-makers and funders in the university. The project manager outlined a clear map matching the intended objectives with the strategic goals of Zayed University. The success of the formal selection process led to the approval of the project.

Business Case for the Project

The leaders at Zayed University have been working hard to support the educational needs of every student. This explains why the institution has a powerful vision that resonates with the need for quality education for all. The SFAA was identified as a critical project that would make it possible for more learners to access financial aid from the institution. Students whose financial needs are met can find it easier to pursue their educational objectives. Consequently, the idea would contribute to the university’s strategies and goals (Junior & Carvalho 2013).

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Review of Processes and Expectations

Several processes were taken seriously to make the project successful. The first phase was to develop a strategy for the project. A business case was completed to ensure the app supported Zayed University’s objectives. Upon approval, the leaders designed the best plan to ensure the project was executed successfully. The design entailed a wide range of activities that brought together programmers and app developers.

The process was guided by a timeline to ensure every phase was completed in a proper manner (Silvus & Schipper 2014). After completing the design, the developers went ahead to test the application. The targeted individuals were then informed about the app and its unique benefits. The project was then closed after the app was launched successfully.

The completion of these processes has led to various expectations. It is anticipated that more students will use the app to apply for financial aid. The expenses that have been incurred by learners before will be dealt with (Solis-Carcano, Corona-Suarez & Garcia-Ibarra 2015). More parents and students will benefit significantly from the SFAA app. The SFAA program is expected to increase the number of individuals who have been getting financial assistance from the university. Students whose applications are rejected can identify the reasons immediately and make informed decisions. The app will make it easier for the institution to continue sustaining the financial needs of more students.

Dividing the Program into Smaller Projects

The SFAA could not be subdivided into several smaller projects. This was the case because it was not a complex project. The program could have been managed successfully by a small number of professionals. The important thing was to attract, guide, and empower the players using adequate incentives and resources. The important thing was to get the required approval from the university’s top management (Silvus & Schipper 2014).

The approval would then make it easier for the project manager to support the development of the new app. The possession of various project management dexterities delivered tangible results without subdividing the program.

Project Stakeholders

Several stakeholders were involved throughout the project implementation period. Zayed University was the main stakeholder because it financed and eventually benefited from the new app. The targeted students and parents were the second group of stakeholders. These individuals would benefit from the SFAA and meet their educational objectives. The project manager, the targeted followers, and app developers were the pioneers who supported the development of the program (Lehmann 2016). The successful completion of the project would eventually support the objectives of every stakeholder involved or targeted by the SFAA.

Project Charter

Project Overview
Program Name: Smart Financial Aid Application (SFAA)
Project Manager: [student to insert name]
Timeline: October 2016 – December 2017
Status: Completed and approved
Requestor: Zayed University
Proposed End Date: January 2018
Project Details
Description
  • The SFAA program will make it easier for students to apply for financial assistance using their smartphones or via the internet.
  • The app seeks to minimize the time taken to complete the application process.

Purpose

  • The contemporary application process for financial assistance was manual.
  • The SFAA program was aimed at improving the application process.

Goals and Objectives

  • Pursue the university’s academic goals
  • Support more learners with financial needs
  • Make the application process for more parents and students

Stakeholders

  • Students
  • Zayed University
  • Web and app developers/programmers
  • Communities/parents

Constraints and Risks

  • Tight timeframe for the project
  • Ensuring that the app is compatible with different devices such and operating systems
  • The need to develop a user-friendly app

Assumptions

  • The project is founded on the assumption that Zayed University plans to become successful.
  • The app is assumed to encourage more students to apply for financial assistance.

Benefits

  • The administrators can monitor the approval or rejection of every application.
  • The application status is communicated to every student automatically.

Criteria and Recommendations

The designed app will make it easier for more students to apply for financial assistance. The app is critical since it echoes the technological changes experienced across the world today (Lehmann 2016). Notably, more students have been finding it hard to apply for financial assistance due to physical distance. The app is therefore a revolutionary strategy that will modify the situation. The app is designed to be used on personal computers (PCs) and smartphones. This makes it exemplary and reliable. The main recommendation is for the app to be integrated with the university’s website. This move will encourage more needy students to apply for financial assistance from Zayed University.

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Reference List

Junior, R & Carvalho, M 2013, ‘Understanding the impact of project risk management on project performance: an empirical study’, Journal of Technology Management & Innovation, vol. 8, no. 1, pp. 64-78.

Lehmann, O 2016, Situational project management: the dynamics of success and failure, CRC Press, Boca Raton.

Silvus, A & Schipper, R 2014, ‘Sustainability in project management competencies: analyzing the competence gap of project managers’, Journal of Human Resource and Sustainability Studies, vol. 2, no. 1, pp. 40-58.

Solis-Carcano, R, Corona-Suarez, G & Garcia-Ibarra, A 2015, ‘The use of project time management processes and the schedule performance of construction projects in Mexico’, Journal of Construction Engineering, vol. 1, no. 1, pp. 1-9.

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