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Project Planning

Project Planning

Author: Jeff Carroll

This lesson provides an overview of project planning. 

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Source: Image of Newton’s cradle, ball, Public Domain, Sparkol VideoScribe Internal Image.

Video Transcription

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Hi, I'm Jeff. And in this lesson, we'll discuss Project Planning. The project plan describes how work on a project will proceed. And how that work will be tracked so the appropriate deliverables are created.

In this lesson, we'll discuss the components of a project plan in general, before going into greater detail about those components in later lessons. So let's get started. There are six main components of a project plan.

As the plan is developed, each component might depend on development of another component. And as each component becomes better defined, related components might need adjusted as well. The first component to be defined is the work breakdown structure, usually referred to as the WBS.

The WBS breaks down the project work into separate, easily manageable tasks-- hopefully so that the completion of each task is easy to execute and track. For example, on a project to construct a building, the rough end of the plumbing would be a manageable task. Once the WBS is complete, then the other components are defined and documented, and multiple components can be developed simultaneously.

The project schedule, this determines the time for the project, including the start and end dates, as well as the end dates from significant phases and deliverables. The tasks from the work breakdown structure are set into the schedule in proper sequence to determine these dates. The resource plan, these are the people and items needed to manage the project or complete the deliverables.

Project budget, the amount of money that must be invested to complete the project is covered by this component. The budget, schedule, and resource plans are tightly interrelated, so changes in one component will require adjustments to the other two. For example, if the schedule increases by one month, then the budget and the resources needed for completion will likely increase too.

The risk management plan, here the risks to a projects success are identified and documented. Plans to mitigate those risks, should they occur, are also covered. And finally, the communication plan.

This component documents the methods used to communicate the project status with stakeholders and team members. Now, each organization might have different methods to develop a project plan. But these six components should be included in every project plan. It's the project manager's responsibility to document each of these components in order to create an effective project plan.

All right, nicely done. In this lesson, you learned what a project plan is. And you learned the six components a plan should include. Thanks. And have a great day.

Terms to Know
Project Plan

Document that provides guidance on how a project will be executed and controlled to ensure successful delivery of project goals and deliverables.

Project Schedule

A sequenced plan that estimates the time required to complete project activities and tasks.

Resource Planning

A process of determining required resources for a project, including people, equipment, and materials.

WBS (Work Breakdown Structure)

A hierarchical structure of work that is required for the scope of a project.