Project life cycle

of affiliation: The Project Life Cycle (phases) The main goal of the any project manager and the project team is to carry out the project work to meet the pre determined objectives. Every project constitutes a beginning, intermediate period and the ending. A standard project characteristically has four major stages that include: initiation, planning, implementation, and closure (Cobb, 2012). Each of this stage serves to accomplish a unique agenda of tasks and together, these stages are referred to as the project life cycle.
Initiation Phase
As the first stage of the entire process, this phase provides the project objectives that may be a business problem or opportunity. During this stage a suitable response to the problem is documented in a business case alongside recommendations that detail solution alternatives. Feasibility study comes handy to examine if each alternative addresses objectives of the project before making the final recommendation. In the feasibility the team asks the question “ can we do the project?” And in justification the question “ should we do the project?” is asked.
Immediately following the approval of the recommendation, the project is initiated by first appointing the project manager. In addition, the deliverables and the project team is identified.
Planning Phase
Planning is the next stage that serves to further develop the project solution. Here, the team makes a detail study of the work as it identifies the project steps and resource requirements and at the same time come up with a working strategy to help meet the set goals. To accomplish this, the team comes up with an outline of the tasks, activities, dependencies and timeframes. It is this point where the project manager develops the project budget to help control and monitor expenditure during implementation stage. Together all this is referred to as the scope management. The other important consideration is risk management, an aspect which looks into matters that pose possible threats to the whole process. Here, “ high-threat” potential problems are established along with the measures that are to be taken (Kanda, 2011). Finally, the project manager documents a quality plan; detailing on quality targets, control measures, and assurance alongside an acceptance plan.
Implementation (execution) Phase
During this third stage, the project plan is set on motion to carry out the task of the project as the team monitors the progress and make necessary adjustments, which are also recorded as variations from the original plan. In addition, this stage involves reporting on progress through regular team meetings. The information gathered here helps to maintain control over the path taken by the project through analysis of activities performance when comparing the output to the project plan. .
Status reports delivered in this stage should always give weight to the anticipated end point with regard to deliverables quality, schedule, and cost. Each project deliverable established should be assessed for quality and evaluated against the predetermined criteria. In a case where the deliverables produced meet the customer needs, the project can now get into the closure stage.
Closing phase
This stage is also celled the completion phase and it involves: handing over of the final deliverables to the client, release of the project documentation to the business, concluding suppliers contract, handing over project materials and communicating the closing of the project to relevant persons. The very last step involves a move to carry out lesson learned studies that will help establish what went as planned and what did not as measure to enrich future project teams.
Cobb, A. T. (2012). Leading project teams: the basics of project management and team leadership (2nd ed.). Thousand Oaks, Calif.: SAGE.
Kanda, A. (2011). Project management: a life cycle approach (Eastern economy ed.). New Delhi: PHI Learning Private Limited.