LO 1 Establish project aims, objectives and timeframes
P1- Project aims and objectives
At the start of every project there will be a variety of ideas and opinions about the purpose and scope of the project. The project initiation and planning stage is connected with taking these ideas and intentions and developing them into a formal, planned, resourced and funded project. The purpose of the Project initiation and planning stage is to establish the goals and structure for managing the project effort. It is also necessary to develop a process by which the the project objectives can be achieved. This process will typically involve carrying out a number of tasks and producing a number of products during the course of the project. It is also very important to arrange the tasks in a top down structure that specifies the required work in more detail (Lewis, 2011). The project initiation and planning stage must also define what resources and associated time commitment are required to carry out the project. The work breakdown structure provides a basis from which this estimation can be carried out. The resource and time commitment can be used to calculate an end date for the project and an estimate of its cost (Laslo, 2010).
The requirements for setting aims and objectives and will vary according to company named Jupiter Enterprise’s disciplines. There are different type of aims such as:
Service delivery: Making sure that services delivered are customer centric.
Participation: Making sure the young people feel like they are part of something which in turn may strengthen their involvement in their community (Lewis, 2011).
Advocacy: Giving the employees a voice
Partnership: Working as part of a team to enhance the lives of organizational people.
Excellence: Working in order to achieve the best
A business aim is the goal a business wants to achieve. A primary aim for all the business organizations is to add value and the private sector this involves making a profit (Laslo, 2010). More strategic aims include expansion, market leadership and brand building. A business objective is a detailes structure of a step someone plans to take in order to achieve a stated aim (Davidson Frame, 2014). These aims need to SMART in order to progress the organization’s performance:
Specific: Clear and Easy to understand
Measurable: Able to be qualified
Achievable: Possible to be attained
Realistic: ‘not pie in the sky’
Time bound: Associated with a specific time period
Public sector organizations set objectives for service, such as processing customer’s tax returns within the deadline (Lewis, 2011). On the other hand, Private sector organizations set objectives for client satisfaction, effectiveness in handling client order within a given time period (Agile Project Management, 2013). Objectives within an organization are established at a number of levels from top level corporate objectives, down to team objectives, and individual objectives that create a framework for operational activities. These are often translated into targets which help to motivate staff in reaching short-term goals. Objectives therefore provide a clear sketch for all the different activities that a firm carries out. By measuring how well an objective has or has not been achieved, managers can make necessary changes to their activities to ensure progress and achievement of the stated objectives are made within the time frame allocated.
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Initiation is the backbone of a project where goals is set in the life-cycle. In this phase a challenge or an opportunity is identified and solution options are presented (Agile Project Management, 2013). A feasibility study will be conducted to identify the correct solution options for the project. The solution needs to be approved and the project are initialized. A project manager is appointed and the objectives, scopes and structure of the new project is outlined in the project charter.
P2 – A project management plan that covers aspects of cost, scope, time, quality, communication, risk and resources
Aims and objectives should not be too vague, ambitious, or broad in scope. It should just repeat each other in different terms and just be a list of things related to the given research topic. Aims and objectives should not contradict the given methods (Davidson Frame, 2014). They should not imply methodological goals or standards of measurement, poor or generalizability of findings that the methods cannot sustain. Project management is a set of principles to effectively manage the process and activity of planning, organizing motivating and controlling resources and procedures to achieve specific goals in a unique environment. A project management plan should follow some stages like:
- A project plan is critical to the success of the project. It identifies the work breakdown structure of phases, activities, tasks, dependencies and time frames to be under taken to complete the project (Heerkens, 2015).
- Financial plan describes the financial resources required for the project. This would be the total cost of labor, equipment and materials.
- Communication plan describes a schedule of communication events and activities to be provided to all stakeholders to keep the informed of the progress of the project (Ponnappa, 2014).
- The resource plan should give a detailed listing of the resources required to give the Project Manager a complete overview of the resources needed.
- The procurement plan depicts all material and products that needs to be sourced from external suppliers.
- The quality plan list the quality targets that is required for the project. Quality assurance and Quality control are implemented to make sure that the level of quality is achieved (Heerkens, 2015).
- The risk plan identifies all risks in the project and minimize the impact on the project (Ponnappa, 2014).
In execution phase the project team create the physical project deliverables outlined by the project plan. A range of management processes are implemented to monitor and control the result of the project. This is as follows:
- Time Management: Monitor time spends on a project.
- Cost Management: Recording the consumption of the project budget.
- Quality Management: Ensure that project deliverables meet customer’s requirements.
- Risk Management: Monitoring and controlling project risks.
- Issues Management: Involves resolving any unforeseen issues.
- Acceptance Management: Carrying out review to gain customers approval of deliverables.
The closure phase ensure that the project criteria have been fully satisfied. All project stakeholders must be informed that the project have been closed and a release plan need to be identified for the project deliverables, documentation, supplier contracts and resources (Ponnappa, 2014). If this planned properly the post implementation review will help to determine if the requirements was met within scope and budget.
Project scope management includes all the essential processes to ensure that the project includes all the work required to complete the project successfully (Cooke, Tate, & Cooke, 2011). It means all the elements that is included in the project. The key scope management processes are:
- Initiation: Commit the organization to begin next phase of project
- Scope Definition: Diving major deliverables in to smaller groups that is easier to manage.
- Scope Planning: Creating a project scope management plan that documents how the project scope will be defined verified, and controlled.
- Scope Verification: Formalizing acceptance of the project scope.
- Scope change control: Controlling changes to the project scopes.
Creating a project plan is the first thing one should do when undertaking any kind of project (Cooke, Tate, & Cooke, 2011). Often project planning is ignored in favor of getting on with the work. However many people fail to realize the value of a project plan is saving time, money and many other issues. A project is successful when the needs of the stakeholders have been met.
P3 Work breakdown structure and a Gantt chart to provide timeframes and stages for completion
The work breakdown structure is a hierarchical list that defines the major elements of a project. It is used to chunk a complex project that might seem overwhelming into manageable parts. Typically the WBS consists of an organized task list with an estimate of the time and resources required and the responsible person (Cooke, Tate, & Cooke, 2011).
Gantt Chart is a project planning tool that is used to represent the timing of tasks required to complete a project. Because this chart is simple to understand and easy to build. This is used by many project managers for all but the most complex project (Maylor, 2010). According to this chart, each task takes up one row. Dates run along the top in increments of days, weeks or months depending on the total length of the project. The expected time for each task is represented by a horizontal bar whose left and marks the expected beginning of the task and whose right end marks the expected completion date. Tasks may run sequentially, in parallel or overlapping. Charts can also show task dependency. As an example Task D must wait for Task A and B to complete before starting. The chart gets updated as the project progress. Through this chart one can get an easy and quick overview of the project progress. In building a Gantt Chart keep the tasks to manageable number so that the chart fits on a single page (Maylor, 2010). More complex project may require subordinate charts which detail the timing of all the subtasks which make up of the main tasks. It often helps to have an additional column containing numbers which identify who on the team is responsible for the task in case of team project. Sometimes the project has important events which one would like to appear on the project timeline, but which are not tasks. There are some guidelines that need to be followed while creating the Gantt Chart:
- Use weeks as the time unit
- Show more detail on the design tasks, less detail on reports/ documents or presentation tasks
- Review and update the chart at least every two weeks.
LO2 Small- scale research, information gathering and data collection
P4- Small-scale research by applying qualitative and quantitative research methods appropriate for meeting project aims and objectives
There are some data collected during the research which will definitely support the aim of the project. Both qualitative and quantitative methods were used to get needed results. Secondary data by an organization’s customers are collected in quantitative method. These secondary data collected with the help of its service history system or by company’s annual report or by its past profit and loss statements. To meet the research scale some steps like questionnaire, surveys and interviews have been taken. The interview is taken from the workers and the management team of the organization. Company’s previous year’s data were asked to them which was regarding their performance and past gross profit. A door to door survey have also been conducted from the consumers of the company where questions related to customer services were asked. Both qualitative and quantitative method is mentioned below:
Qualitative Method: It approaches the data which are extremely varies in nature. It includes virtual information which can be seized but not numerical in nature (Ponnappa, 2014). In-depth interviews such as individual interviews and group interviews are taken in this method. The data gathered from the interviews are recorded in several ways or written notes. As, in-depth interviews are quite different from direct conversation, so here this type of interviews are taken on written notes. Upper management to lower employees of the organization are interviewed under this qualitative method. Survey questionnaire were shared to all of them, so that the reasons behind the company’s loss would be found easily. The employees during the interview faced different queries like are they satisfied with the strategic plan of the firm, what does they think about the behavior of their upper level employees. The purpose of the interview was t get into the ideas and perception of the employees about the sensation of interest.
Quantitative Method: In this method, mathematical and statistical techniques mainly used to analyze data. Political scientists draw a wide range of sketch, including primarily qualitative data like incomplete interviews, documents, participation observation etc (Ponnappa, 2014). They also used quantitative data of sample surveys or aggregate statistics like election results, census materials or cross-national statistic series. So all the data from past years and current years are collected where all the expenses and income of past years are attached.
After calculating all the data of the research work, the project’s aim, scope and objectives are very high that can be achievable with a strong strategic implementation. According to this research it is proved that the company’s base is quite strong but it is not that organized. It can be shattered anytime if the management does not perform in an organized way. The research was mainly done to improve the performance of the management, and its back dated working style.
There is a chart mentioned below which shows the questionnaire that has been used to collect key data. It also shows the profit, expenses and loss of Jupiter Enterprise from the year 2001 to 2016. According to the chart, it is clear that in the past few year the profit was quite high. Expenses from 2001 to 2007 are very rare but from 2008 to 2016 the amount of expenses increased gradually which caused the loss in that year. It can be concluded that the expenses will overcome on profit in upcoming years and loss will be more. On the other hand through qualitative method primary data can be collected through question airing, by doing survey or taking interview of the staffs. The questionnaire survey is as follows:
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Q1. Are you satisfied with the company’s service towards its employees?
Q2. Are you happy with your pay scale?
Q3. Do you feel secure in the company?
Q4. How do you feel about the behavior of the staffs?
Q5. What do you think about the company’s current strategies?
Q6. Is the relation between seniors and juniors are good?
Q7: Is there any conflict between the upper and lower class employees?
Q8: Give any recommendation about the company?
After finishing the survey it was clear that all the employees gave different answers to the questions. Everyone is having different opinion and recommendations. So it is proved that there is something wrong within the organization and its management, which needs to be rectified as soon as possible otherwise the company may face a huge loss.
LO3 Presentation of the project and appropriate communicative recommendations based on meaningful conclusions drawn from the evidence findings and /or analysis
P5 – Analysis of research and data using appropriate tools and techniques
The management and new technology can make an important role in achieving the organization’s aim. Not only that but the use of new technology can change the idea of every staffs when they adopt it. Management is the backbone of an organization, and without a organized management a company can never manage any plan or strategy. Hence, educated and intellectual staffs must be essential for the development and the progress of the firm, because intelligent and hard-working team are the best option to support a company in achieving goals and meet the challenges. Leadership style also need to be organized in terms of motivating the staffs.
P6 – Appropriate communicative recommendations as a result of research and data analysis
After studying the histories of some organizations like Virginia mobiles, Vodafone UK and Samsung the first recommendation would be to rebuild the structure of the company to take this out from its dark site. It defined promotion path as well. There will be a huge requirement of specialist managers. Employees will be very loyal to their respective departments within the organization. Some training centers or workshops will also be there in future to make the workers skilled in their respective fields. That’s how the workers will be very useful to the company and will help it to meet the targets. There will be no waste of time for a company as it can get its qualified workers from training center. It is also recommended that the company can use suitable media to advertise their services, as advertisement is the best way that can reach a large number of people. There are so many other options or alternatives that can also support the aims. Its aims are to beat and clean out their rivals and want to spread out of its business zone., so for before giving anyone its branch first they have to see whether the other party is eligible for taking the responsibility or not. New technology can also help them to rebuild their reputation in the market.
LO4 Reflection on the value gained from conducting the project and its usefulness to support sustainable organizational performance
P7 Reflection on the value of undertaking the research to meet stated objectives and own learning and performance
After analyzing the research I come on a point that poor management is the loss portion of the company. My investigation by taking interviews and surveys shows that the company named Jupiter Enterprises got loss due to poor management. The way management implicates on the strategy is really bad. I have investigated that there is a big gap between upper and lower employees. There was a lack of communication between upper and lower class employees. And the main criteria are the management which is less trained, that’s why the company was poor in following its strategies. Because of a disorganized management the lower employees don’t have the ability to deal with the customer and because of this there became a gap between the departments of HR and Marketing Department. There was not any workshop in this company where a new can employee can train himself. Company wastes a lot of time because it does not have any work shop or a training center where a new employee can easily get the skills or experience. New employees waste one or two months in company for getting some skills and used to the working style (Brody, & Ryan, 2012). It was a huge drawback. Secondly, I found out through my research that there was not any time table in this company. Employees were coming to the office in different time. Some of them always comes late and there is no one to rectify this issue as the management staffs also comes late. There was no check and balance system. Through my research I showed that there are very low quality instruments provided to the staffs from the company. I have seen that there are a lot of rivals who are coming to the same field and improving their performance. Another thing is that we must need a strategic plan and implication of the same in order to improve its gross profit. That can help them in the future. I hope this analysis will help the organization and its employees to recover from its dark site.
- Agile Project Management. (2013). 1st ed. [Place of publication not identified]: J. Wiley & Sons.
- Brody, D. and Ryan, C. (2012).Citizen involvement in environmental bureaucratic decision-making. 1st ed.
- Cooke, H., Tate, K. and Cooke, H. (2011).Project management. 1st ed. New York: McGraw-Hill.
- Davidson Frame, J. (2014). Reconstructing Project Management.Project Management Journal, 45(1), pp.e2-e2.
- Heerkens, G. (2015).Project management. 1st ed. [Place of publication not identified]: Mcgraw-Hill Education.