MAN141 Project Management Tools

1. Introduction

The project aims at conducting a critical analysis of the wind farm of the company, EcoNewWorld and the development of a project management plan for this project. EcoNewWorld is a well-settled energy company that has installed natural energy sources in the UK. Scope, budget, timeline, deliverable and goals of the project are outlined which is necessary to keep the project on track. A project management plan helps in defining how the work of the project is to be executed. The Communication management approach is selected for developing the PMP of this project.

Appropriate project management tools and techniques are also recognised for project management plans in the study. The significance of developing a project management plan is to avoid risk involved in the business. On the other hand, a systematic project management is possible with appropriate collaboration planning and managerial system. The study has focused on the development of project management plan and based on the development of this plan an effective recommendation can be provided.

Critical Evaluation of project briefs

Direction of this project work is based on developing appropriate communication plans and project management plans for EcoNewWorld. Improvement of Eco friendly energy for contributing towards sustainable development is the major focus area of this project. Mission and Vision of the company is pretty clear which is necessary in accomplishment of goals. Vision of EcoNewWorld depicts the fact that company wants to be the largest leader of market in the sector of renewable energy in the UK.

Mission demonstrates to energise the country with innovative and creative products of energy without utilising the harmful fuel that is fossil fuels. Reduction of use of fossil fuels the largest business plan for the production of energy assist in removing changes in the climate (Mikhieieva and Waidmann, 2017). Purpose of the study is to give proper guidance in the project of Wind farm which gives practicable plan of businesses which is backed by vigorous financial plan. EcoNewWorld has ordered the three projects which helps in production of power from the sources of renewable energy.

Project Objectives

  • To explore maximum possibilities of using natural energy for environmental sustainability
  • To develop effective stakeholder communication plan for effective introduction and improvement of company performances
  • To develop potential project management plan for avoiding uncertainty and challenges for achievement of strategic objectives of EcoNewWorld

 

Comparison of projects

The similar project of sustainable energy that can be used for comparison of EcoNewWorld is VineFarm. EcoNewWorld is the sustainable project of the UK whose aim is to produce eco-friendly energy sources. Vinefarm project of German focuses on producing largest solar farm in German so that the people can use sustainable energy sources. The focus of the company is on the sustainability of the country for the belter future.

Vine Solar farm has implemented solar and wind park in the UK which has a total capacity of approximately 260MW. The total capacity of wind farm is approximately 400kw which is lesser compared to the EcoNewWorld. VineFarm project has used Scrum methodology that engages with series of sprints (greenmatch.co.uk, 2021). However, EcoNewWord project is focusing on using Waterfall methodology which is better due to using of modern software and techniques.

Content of APM

Initiating

The first content required in association of project management is initiation towards specific plan of implementation to improve business perspective of the company. Based on the initiated process, EcoNewWorld focuses on development of advanced communication systems for connecting with internal and external stakeholders of the project.

Planning

The planning area of the project management plan based on APM focuses on identification of project missions for developing governance strategy. It also includes risk mitigation planning for reducing possible barriers and challenges (Papke-Shields and Boyer-Wright, 2017).

Executing

Execution is the third important content of association of project management for developing implementation and monitoring strategy. EcoNewWorld focuses on developing a timeline of achieving project objectives to ensure team management and strategic direction.

Project Documentation

Project documentation is an important content considered in association of project management for maintaining legal perspective and keeping records of multiple project management activities. Project managers and operational managers of the wind farm project are going to consider all the legal requirements for proper planning including road map and budget planning (Painter and Martins, 2017).

Monitoring and controlling

Monitoring and controlling of all the activities associated with the project is an important part for tracking the progress. Operational manager is going to focus on observing performance of internal and external stakeholders to achieve project goals and objectives.

Closing

Project closing after fulfilment of all the requirements and important steps mentioned in APM. EcoNewWorld project of wind farm project will be closed after completion of all the phases.

Controlling system

Quality control system after project completion is associated with regular auditing of project outcomes for identifying its benefit and required attention.

Project management plan

Areas Initiation Planning Executing Duration
Scope management Identification of project objectives Development of project mission and governance strategy Development of project phase and timelines based on objectives 1 month
Risk management Identification of risk of the project Development of strategy in the mitigation of risk Implementation of the strategies that are planned in the management of risk based on the objectives 2 months
Cost management Identification of cost required in the completion of the project Proper planning of raw materials and other objects that are required for the project helps to manage the cost of the project In the part of execution, the budget that is estimated is used for the proper running of the project 1 month
Communication management Effective communication with the team members and stakeholders understanding their needs and necessity Planning the procedures, rules and process of doing the project through the communication strategy Execution of the plan and strategy that are developed within the members of the project during the planning process 1 month
Why To development proper communication amongst project stakeholders and achieved project objectives
When After development of project planning and identification of scopes
Who Key project stakeholders including CEO of EcoNewWorld, Operation manger and project manager
How much £1,00,000
Where Project development, Sustainable approaches, and infrastructure and operational activates.
How Through the adaptation of Waterfall project management methodology

Financial breakdown

Areas Budget
Project budget £ 30,000
Annual maintenance cost £ 15,000
Operational cost £ 20,000
Resources cost £ 25,000
Employee cost £ 10,000

Table 1: Project Management plan

(Source: Papke-Shields and Boyer-Wright, 2017)

Project Management element for the P3M best practices EcoNewWorld

P3M refers to project, programme and portfolio which are concerned with the management of several packages of work to accomplish the purposes. The aim of the P3 management is to provide the needed objects to the key stakeholders in a much-planned manner. The purpose of the project, programme and portfolio manage and govern the methods that convey the objectives or purposes of the project effectively and efficiently.

EcoNewWorld uses the P3M practices for their management of projects as it maximises the accomplishment of desired outcomes and makes sure to have effective and efficient utilisation of resources. As cited by Zohrehvandi et al. (2018), the practices of P3M that are used by the company in the management of the project satisfy the requirements and necessity of various stakeholders that are involved in the project.

Project and Programme in the P3M are almost alike which is undertaken to accomplish the set concluded objectives. The differences between the two are not much which is mainly created towards accommodating the various degrees of the scope’s complexity. The core elements of the project and programmes in the project management help in securing the liquidity of fund for the completion of the work (Gonzalez-Rodriguez, 2017). It also focuses on the preparation of business cases to describe that work is viable and achievable. The elements of P3M monitor and control the scope, finance, resources and risks and also develop and implements the plan of management plans.

The management of the portfolio mainly centred on maximising the efficiency and effectiveness of the programme and project management across several projects with liberated objectives.

The central component of the management of the portfolio is defining the methods and procedures of the management which is to be utilised consistently across programmes and projects. According to the view of Rolik (2017), it helps in the implementation of infrastructure to sustain the programmes and projects. The coordination of the limited resources in this management of P3 matches the supply and demand and optimises the assignment of the resources that are available.

The approach of the project includes the risk appetite, maturity level and uncertainty expected of the organisation. The approach of the project identifies the changes that are needed to be made in the project which includes the P3M that is project, programme and Portfolio. Several approaches are considered within the lifecycle of the project and the three typical ones are the agile approach, lean approach and waterfall approach (Cuadros López et al. 2017). Quality management in the initiation of a project is considered in the management of project includes the expectation of customer quality and the criteria of acceptance.

2. Communication management approach

Role and significance of communication in project management

The communication management approach refers to the guidelines or instructions that are created by the project manager before starting a project. The main purpose of making such guidelines is to prevent any kind of confusion in the project management operation and accomplish the project within the given deadline. It helps to deliver the right messages to the right people associated with the project management team (Painter and Martins, 2017).

This approach can help in establishing good relationships among the internal and external stakeholders of an organization. Good relationships among the stakeholders and effective communication among them can help an organization to earn huge profits from its business. Methods of communication can be verbal, non-verbal, written, listening and visual which helps in interaction with others. Approach of communication management helps to communicate with the authorities and members of the team regarding confusion and disruptions. In a team, an approach of the communication management is necessary or else the delivery of project can be failed.

MAN141 Project Management Tools

Figure 1: Communication management in project management

(Source: Mikhieieva and Waidmann, 2017)

The communication management approach in project management helps to address how information regarding the project has been shared among the stakeholders. Effective communication among the project management team is necessary so that the project management team can prevent any constraints to generate in the project. The success of the project depends on various stakeholders of an organization and for this reason; effective communication among the stakeholders is essential.

Stakeholders are supposed to communicate through various communication tools and techniques that can be verbal and non-verbal. According to the view of Mikhieieva and Waidmann (2017), using tools and techniques for communication helps an organisation to maintain transparency in the communication and confusion can be mitigated easily.

Transparency in communication must be there within every department of project management which can be beneficial for delivery of projects and accomplishment of goals. Several roles and significance of communication management in the project management team have been discussed below:

MAN141 Project Management Tools

Figure 2: Roles of communication management

(Source: Andersson, 2019)

Relaying information: A proper communication among the internal and external stakeholders can help the project management team to exchange accurate information. Accuracy of the information is a necessary factor as any mistake in delivering the message can cause project failure (O’Connor and Shumate, 2018). Failing in managing the employees or accomplishing the project within the given deadline can hamper the organizational reputation.

Additionally, in the future, the organization can face issues in getting any project from the clients. This suggests that proper relationships are supposed to be maintained by the project management team to accomplish the project within the given deadline. It is the role of the project manager to ensure that the employees and the stakeholders have received the accurate information that was expected.

Receiving information: Making sure if the delivered information among the project management team is correct or not is the due responsibility of the project manager. As stated by Arop et al. (2018), the delivery of wrong information regarding the project instruction can mislead the employees which can cause loss regarding time and budget.

Making such a loss can not only consume time but also budget and in terms of preventing this proper communication is necessary among the project management team. Focused communication in project management is necessary as regular updates about the progression of the project need to be delivered to the stakeholders and clients. In this case, proper observation is recommended as it can help the stakeholders to get regular updates about the project.

Change in the situation: In a project, situational changes can be required at any time for many reasons, for example, clients can change their minds and ask to change the project structure accordingly. Proper communication can mitigate such issues as the project management team will be informed of the obtained changes in the project (Femenia-Serra, 2018).

In this aspect, the unexpected occurrence of hindrances can be avoided in a project management team. The project manager needs to organize weekly meetings to understand the growth of the project. Proper updates about the project’s current status can help in accomplishing the project within the given deadline.

Discussing problems: Proper communication in a project management team can help to discuss problems in the project. As suggested by Zhao et al. (2017), fishbone diagrams, infographics, linear or bar graphs, pie charts, comics, and others can help to discuss issues regarding the project. Understanding the main reason for the issues and their sources can help the project manager to solve the issues through discussion.

In this regard, the project managers can use various communication tools, project management tools, and techniques to observe the current state of the project in the organization. Based on proper identification of problem the project manager can take effective step and will be able to omit problem in communication systematically.

Mitigating language barrier: In an organization, mostly in a multinational organization, cross-cultural team members face issues due to the language barrier. Different countries have different languages and different styles of working that can create issues and conflicts in an organization (Alaloul et al. 2017). To prevent such issues from impacting the entire project management structure of an organization, the project manager needs to make a bridge between the language barriers.

Purpose of communication plan

A communication plan is important in a project management team in terms of accomplishing a project within the given deadline. According to the view of Marlow et al. (2018), a project communication plan helps in making references documentation that help the project management team to follow for the project. A communication plan is beneficial to set the expected time to contact the stakeholders for project-related discussions.

It can even give the stakeholders the opportunities to share their valuable feedback for the project. In this aspect, the project management team can identify the errors they have made in the project and rectify them accordingly. Apart from that, an effective communication plan helps the project managers to increase their productivity through meetings and conferences and eliminate issues.

Communication skills of the stakeholders

Stakeholders are the key parts of the organization and mostly in the case of a project and in terms of handling the project effectively, proper skills for communication are required. As per the view of Gandomani et al. (2019), the 7Cs model can be considered to enhance the communication skills of the organizational stakeholders. The 7C stands for clear, concise, concrete, correct, coherent, complete, and courteous which are supposed to be acquired by the stakeholders for better communication in a project.

MAN141 Project Management Tools

Figure 3: 7Cs model of communication

(Source: Gandomani et al. 2019)

Clear: The stakeholders need to state their aims and objectives clearly to the project manager so that no confusion can arise during the accomplishment of the project. Clear statements can eliminate many questions from the project manager’s mind and the project can be accomplished effectively. As suggested by Marlow et al. (2018), many ideas in a single sentence can make the requirement of a project clearer to the opposite person. In this regard, the project manager can deliver the project management ideas to the employees and the project can be completed appropriately. Based on this discussion it can be stated that clarity plays a vital role in the communication process and it helps in maintaining good communication.

Concise: The less the word is the more the idea can be concise, and the stakeholders need to explain the project requirement in short. Most of the time, the audiences prefer to understand the project requirements in a short time as time management is a great factor here. The project manager or the employees cannot waste their time listening to unnecessary things as that can cause a delay in the project accomplishment (KÖROĞLU and BAHAR, 2018).

Concrete: Delivery of concrete messages to the project management team can help them to understand the project requirements effectively. More vivid descriptions of the project requirements can sometimes distract the minds of the employees that can lead to project failure (Radujković and Sjekavica, 2017).

Correct: An effective communication requires error-free communication among the audiences and that can help in improving the quality of the project. Information provided throughout the communication must need to be correct to have effective communication system. Maintenance of the project quality can help the organization to secure its future sustainability in the competitive business market (Gandomani et al. 2019).

Coherent: It is expected from the stakeholders that they will communicate with the project manager or the project management team for valid reasons. Knocking the door of the project manager and the project management team unnecessarily can leave a negative impression on the entire project management team. Panicking on the accomplishment of a project within the given deadline can create hindrances to the project development (Gandomani et al. 2019).

Complete: A complete message regarding the project needs to be delivered to the project management team so that no query comes from the project management team regarding the project. A complete set of information is required in order to avoid misunderstandings in the communication process and it helps in enhancing the value of communication process. After delivering a complete idea regarding the project, the project manager needs to take action and start the project (KÖROĞLU and BAHAR, 2018).

Courteous: This communication skill is required within the stakeholders as this skill can help them to understand the emotion of the person in front of them and communicate with them openly. In this kind of communication, there should be no passive-aggressive tones in the stakeholders (Radujković and Sjekavica, 2017). As a result, the stakeholders can have the quality of emotional intelligence and control the employees accordingly.

3. Tools and techniques for the project management plan

Tools

Project communication is the significant activities that are required to execute a project successfully and for that proper tools and techniques are required. Video conferencing, phones, messages, emails, project board, discussion board, chat tools, weekly status reports, document respiratory, regular meetings all are few communication tools for project management (Papke-Shields and Boyer-Wright, 2017).

These tools are effective to establish proper communication among the team members in the project. Standard communication tools are beneficial in terms of building good relationships among the team members. These kinds of tools are even beneficial in terms of setting and maintaining expectations from the project by creating a cohesive project environment. Additionally, these tools can help the entire project management team to eliminate issues regarding the language barrier.

Techniques

Communication technique is another important factor that is supposed to be considered by the project manager and the rest of the project management team. Standard techniques to apply the communication tools can help to accomplish the project within the given deadline (Sidani et al. 2021). Several techniques for effective communication plan have been discussed below:

MAN141 Project Management Tools

Figure 4: Techniques for communication in project management

(Source: Xuan et al. 2019)

Appropriate planning and Distribution: Appropriate planning of the project needs to be done for the early accomplishment of the project. Standard communication tools for effective project management can help the project manager to finish the project within the given deadline. Effective communication tools can help the project managers to distribute the tasks among the employees (Xuan et al. 2019). Proper knowledge and understanding about the employees can help the project manager to communicate through emotional intelligence.

Collection and Creation: The collection of daily reports of the employees can be obtained using various communication tools. It can help the project manager to understand the progression level of the assigned tasks. Using the project management tools, the project manager can create tasks that are the small segments of the entire project. It can help the entire project management team to finish the project with accuracy. Using standard communication tools can help the project manager to monitor each and everyone in the project management team (Sidani et al. 2021).

Retrieval and storage: Retrieval of data is important in terms of accomplishing the assigned project effectively for more profit generation. Tools and techniques are supposed to be used by the entire project management team to retrieve data and information from various sources (Papke-Shields and Boyer-Wright, 2017). All the guidelines regarding the project need to be stored in the systems of the employees so that they can check the guidelines every time and accomplish the project. Maintenance of the proper guidelines can help the project manager to finish the project earlier.

Management: Proper management practices are needed in the organization in terms of accomplishing a project within the given deadline. As narrated by Xuan et al. (2019), it is the sole responsibility of the project manager to manage the employees to achieve project goals and objectives. Proper management can help an organization to save time and budget for the project which can provide more profit to the project management organization.

Controlling and Monitoring: The project manager has to control the entire operational process in the project management team so that the employees can avoid making any mistakes. Effective controlling and monitoring is important as the combination of these two things can help a project management team to meet the project aims and objectives effectively (Papke-Shields and Boyer-Wright, 2017).

Recommendation

Clear project objectives: The objectives of the project must be clear to the members who are involved in the team. Clear project objectives should be provided for the member that helps to improve the quality of the project. Through the clear project objective, individual members of the team can feel responsible for the completion of the project and the possible outcomes can be seen from the initiation of the project. As opined by Demirkesen and Ozorhon (2017), a project cannot be successful or completed if the goal or aim of the project is not defined.

The objective of installing a wind farm that is capable of 40mv power to the national grid in an average wind speed of more than 10m/s must be cleared to the team (Radujković and Sjekavica, 2017). This helps the project team to understand what the requirement of the company through a project is and how it can be attained. Identifying and comprehending the objective from the beginning helps to see the practical route for the team to accomplish the goal or target of the business.

Identification of proper project methodology: Generally, methodology means the assemblage of techniques, processes, rules and procedures. Project methodologies are particular, strict which contains a series of activities and phases for every phase of the lifecycle of the project in project management. As cited by Ika et al. (2020), there are several project methodologies available for the management of the project which includes Agile, Scrum, Kanban, Lean, and Waterfall and so on. Identification of appropriate project methodology by the project manager helps to set the principles and guide the members in the organisation of the project to make sure the optimum performance can be obtained.

Completion of the project can be successful if the correct mapping of the methodology of management of the project is provided to the team type and goals. The project methodology is the framework that helps in the management of the project in the most possible way (Kivilä et al. 2017). Identification of proper methodology for project management can be initiated with the consideration of team size, cost and budget of the project, timeline and flexibility of the project.

Strong communication strategy: Communication strategy is one of the important parts which are required in the management of a project. Communication should be effective among the members that are involved in the project management. Communication strategies can be verbal, non-verbal and visual through which the interaction within the members can be transparent. As opined by McClory et al. (2017), communication helps to increase transparency in doing the task and the project. The procedures and elements of doing the project at every step can be cleared with effective communication between the members.

A communication strategy helps to reach the targeted audience with the proper medium which helps to identify the requirements of the project. Effective communication within the team can help to reduce the cost and risk of the project (Daniel and Daniel, 2018). Modern tools and techniques are also used to communicate with the key stakeholders of the project which helps in comprehending their needs and requirements.

Rationale for the recommendation

For the successful completion of the project, recommendations are needed which helps in the identification of future problems that can arise in the project management. Analysis of risk creates awareness within the project team to avoid the potential impact that can disrupt the project (Radujković and Sjekavica, 2017). A strong communication strategy is recommended in the management of a project to understand the needs and necessities of the stakeholders and to maintain transparency in doing the task.

Effective communication helps the project team to do the task swiftly without any disruption and negativity. Clear objective and recognition of the appropriate methodology of the project help the members to accomplish the goal of the business with the understanding of desired outcomes. Objectives must be cleared to each member of the project before the initiation so the aim of doing the project is clear (Ika et al. 2020). Identification of proper methodology helps the team to understand the process and rules of the project so that they can provide the best performance.

Analysis of project initiations

Before the initiation of the project, the signature of the authorities such as the project manager, director, finance and contracts director, programme and innovation director, operation director and director of HR must be there in the plan of the project. In the document of project initiation, it is ensured that the project is viable and SMART which means Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant and Time-related.

The financial plan of the project explains the estimation of the budget that is required for the project (Garzon et al. 2019). The budget includes the production cost, operation cost, annual maintenance cost and community centre cost. In the financial plan, the net present value is determined which is the technique of the investment appraisal on the basis of the current value of proper cash flow which is related to the spending.

The principles of quality management help the organisation to accomplish the goals and targets efficiently and effectively. The models of change approach such as Kotter’s change model and Lewin’s change model helps in explaining how the current state of an organisation can be developed to the future state. Through these approaches of change control, the management of the organisation can be able to comprehend the model more easily and establish the changes that are required.

The project control is the part of the initiation of the project document which needs to be followed by the board and manager of the project. The processes include project brief, quality management approach, risk management approach, plan, risk register, issue register, change control approach, communication management and management of team structure. The procedure of escalation of any tolerance needs to be considered which the bottom-up and top-down and consistency of project control are within the trait of project assurance.

Major challenges for EcoNewWorld projects

The major challenge that is faced by EcoNewWorld in the management of projects is the risk management approach. In the management of risk, the time, scope, budget, quality and benefits must be looked for. The risk management approach is based on the following five steps which include identifying the risk, assessing the risk, planning for the risk, implementing and communicating related to the risk.

Analysis of risk is necessary to initiate and develop the project management plan which helps in the identification of risk factors that can affect the management of work in future. It helps in determining the value of risk or threat that is related to the doing of the project (Judge et al. 2019). In the assessment of risk, meetings need to be conducted by the authorities with the members who are involved in the project. Assessment of risk before the initiation of a project helps in the fast success of the project (McClory et al. 2017).

4. Conclusion

Based on the above study, it can be concluded that the communication management approach is used in the installation of wind farm projects by the company, EcoNewWorld of the UK. Several tools and techniques are also used in the management of this project by the company. In the study, recommendations such as risk assessment, communication strategy, and identification of proper methodology are provided which can help the team to complete the project successfully. The rationale for the recommendation of providing those key points is also given to comprehend the better understanding of the project.

 

 

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