Stages of Project Management for IT
Project management for IT can often involve a very lengthy and detailed lifecycle. To make tasks more achievable and attainable, IT projects are broken down into more manageable stages. These stages are unique to each other, but also related – helping to guide projects to completion in the most effective and efficient way possible.
Stage 1: Initiation
It all starts here. This is where the project is created. The goal, or goals, and objectives are determined, and a feasibility study should be performed to verify whether or not the project is advantageous to the organization, and to the bottom line.
Stage 2: Planning
Here, each phase of the project should be meticulously mapped out with razor-sharp precision. Resources are allocated, tasks and responsibilities are assigned, and deliverables are developed. This stage itself can often be done in smaller stages as well, given that project management for IT projects can require regular updates depending on the chosen methodology, the development of new technologies, unexpected priority changes, and other factors. Proper and effective planning in this stage can help minimize errors, challenges, and corrections that could occur in later stages.
Stage 3: Execution
In this stage, the project management team is led through each step of the project’s plan, where they complete tasks and move the project step-by-step toward implementation. Whether a product, service, installation, or other, the end-goal in this stage is to produce the defined deliverable(s) – within the defined scope and terms.
Stage 4: Monitoring and Controlling
Arguably the most important stage, the work must be significantly monitored and controlled to ensure adherence to budget and time requirements, as well as project quality, risk management, resource allocation, and more. Increased collaboration, workflow updates, and timeline tracking happens here to help the project stay within scope until completion. Planning for unforeseen events should also occur, to help make sure that any potentially sudden emergencies or incidents have minimal impact on completion.
Stage 5: Closing
This final stage is where all work is verified as completed and approved per the defined deliverables. Targets should have been achieved within the stated time, quality, and budget parameters. Ownership of the project would transfer from the project team to operations.