This article looks to discuss Project Methods and Procedures in Project Management. Discussing the methods and procedures as a means to maintain consistency of project management practices within an organisation. Covering the development and maintenance of methods and procedures and the typical contents of a structured method. Then discussing awareness of publicly available methods such as PRINCE2 and the links to governance of project management.

Highly effective project managers are well-versed in various project methodologies. They can easily combine any of these methods to create one that suits their team, the project requirements, the technology available, and the project scope.

While there are still plenty of projects that can be done using a straightforward single-method approach, some others require more than one method to accomplish the goal. Either way, choosing the right method is crucial and is the most important decision a project manager makes.

Project Methods and Procedures: Methods vs Procedures

Methodologies serve as the main guide for the implementation of a project. It determines the work procedure as well as the communication structure between team members and to other teams.

Procedures define how the project moves from one step to the next, by breaking the project down into smaller groups of actionable tasks. The tasks are distributed by stage, segment, or phase, depending on the method being used.

Project Methods and Procedures: The 9 Project Methodologies

There are 9 popular methodologies for project management. Initially, these methodologies are only mainly used in IT project management for software development. Later on, project managers who handle product development projects adapted the practice and developed a set of methodologies that are more suitable for their organisation’s business projects. Let’s take a look at the 9 methodologies below:

  1. Waterfall

Mainly used in software development projects. This method breaks the project down into stages, each containing a set of tasks and requirements that the team needs to accomplish, before they can move on to the next stage. This simple approach is ideal for short-term projects with clear and unchanging requirements. This method is highly structured and documentation-heavy. However, it lacks flexibility that if the project requirements change, the developers will have to start all over again.

  1. Agile

The oposite of the waterfall method. Where the fomer method is inflexible, this method offers flexibility at any point of the project, removing the strict heirarchy of tasks, allowing managers and teams to respond and adapt faster to change. Think about building a single-floor scale model house with Lego blocks, and then adding more rooms and floors to it, bit by bit, in the easiest and fastest way possible.

  • Hybrid aka Structured Agile

Combines the Waterfall and Agile methodologies. This method starts off with planning, just as the Waterfall method does, and develops a structure that allows flexibility, adaptability, and rapid iterations.

  • Scrum

Based on Agile principles, this method gets things done by doing sprints and quick huddles, to ensure that every member of the team is on the same page. Each member shares their task/s for the day and then reports their work progress in the next meeting. While this is based on the Agile principle, Scrum cannot be considered the same as Agile.

  • Critical Path Method aka CPM

This method breaks the project down into actionable tasks and then categorised by per activity related to each of the segments in the project. The time per activity is also determined and the dependencies involved in each task or segment are also stated. This ensures that the work is completed with the specified timeline and that hand-offs are done at the right time, whenever there are dependencies involved. This works best with a project management teams who have high levels of time management and schedule management skills.

  • Critical Chain Project Management aka CCPM

This method focuses on resource management, allowing teams with limited resources to complete a project by using the available resources to work on one task at a time. This methodology considers the end-goal first and then move in a backward direction, while mapping dependencies and the tasks until the mapping reaches back to the first step. This allows teams to map the project out from the end-goal perspective, and in a way shows the team what to expect so that they can set proper expectations with the stakeholders, as well.

  • Integrated Project Management aka IPD

This method is also called Integrated Project Delivery or IPD. This method operates on standardised processes, and these processes are shared across the organisation. This allows teams to follow a standardised workflow as they integrate more parts into a project or a campaign, based on initial planning. This method is often used in marketing.

  • Prism

Prism stands for Projects Integration Sustainable Methods. The approach of this method is quite unique as it extends its lifecycle all the way down to the disposal, sunsetting, archiving, or decomissioning of a product or service. It aims to minimise the environmental impacts of a product during its utilisation all the way to its disposal.

  • Prince2

A portmanteau that stands for Projects In Controlled Environments. This is the most widely used methodology in the United Kingdom. There is a certification process for the mastery of this methodology, which gives the certified project manager an advantage and a higher chance to work in organisations that use this as their official project management methodology.

Some projects can be accompilshed by following a single methodology, while others require a combination of two or more methodologies to meet the desired outcome. As mentioned above, combining methodologies require extensive mastery of how each of these methods work and knowing when to use them and which projects require two or more methods combined.

Some of the methods focus on operating a standardised procedure that is implemented throughout an entire organisation, which is an excellent way to maintain consistency across all teams and projects within the organisation. As such, teams become highly familiar and well-versed with the process, making the work much easier and much faster to accomplish overtime.

Methods that allow flexibility give teams the ability to respond to change faster and impliment changes real time. This is ideal for organisations that focus on product development, marketing management, and software development, as the trends they follow change quickly and do so in a short span of time. Following a more flexible methodology is key to being agile and producing output that is always relevant to the current market trend.

Methods and procedures are put in place so that every project can be assessed before the actual work begins and be evaluated before moving on to the next phase or the next stage. It ensures that everyone participating in the project knows what they’re there for, as well as the dependencies involved in the project.

That said, methods and procedures define the work that needs to be done and makes sure that everyone is given the right instructions at all times.

59 Seconds Training

Prince2 Certification

The purpose of this certification is to ensure that a project manager can work in organisations that use this project management methodology, and is required in the UK and even in Australia. Prince2 has a 4-level training and certification process, and is recognised globally. The methodology is based on 6 aspects that serve as the KPIs, 7 principles that are unmodifiable,  7 themes, and 7 processes. It offers 26 project management products that can be integrated with other techniques and frameworks like Quality Review Technique (quality assurance) and Scrum (agile).

While Prince2 does not a guarantee a 100% success rate for a project, it can dramatically increase quality of the project output and efficiency in the process.

Continue Reading —>

Section 9: Governance of Project Management

Translate »