To develop a clear understanding of a Project, we may have a lot of definitions to defined a Project concisely yet completely.
Here we have defined a project in two different ways.
In one way,
A Project may be defined as
“A Series of activities/ tasks need to be completed to reach specific outcomes (Result).”
This definition cleared at least two things:-
- A Project is not a single activity/task. It is a set/series of activities/tasks.
- A Project has a specific outcome (that is a result). It means without a result a project would not be considered complete.
In another way,
A Project is defined as “A series of Interrelated tasks that are planned for execution over a fixed period & within certain requirements & limitations such as cost, quality, performance, etc.”
This definition cleared following things:-
- A project as a set/series of activities/tasks.
- All the activities/tasks are pre-planned ( activities have to be planned before execution).
- A Project has a fixed period.
- A project has certain requirements & limitations which work as constraints.
- And of course, a Project has some outcomes.
The second definition defined a Project in a very effective way as it comprises almost every aspect of a project.
Examples of a Project:-
- Constructing a bridge, building, etc.
- Developing new products/services.
- Implementing a new business plan/ process.
Characteristics of a Project
- Temporary:- A project has a definite starting and ending. Once a project is completed, the new project starts.
- Uniqueness:- Every Project has specific outcomes. No two projects have the same outcomes
- Pre-Planned:- All the activities, which have to be executed for the completion of the project, are Pre-planned. It means a Project is Pre-planned.
- Fixed Time Frame:- A Project has a fixed period in which it has to be completed.
- Result Oriented:- Without any result, a project is not considered complete.
A project is typically bound or constrained mainly by three-element.
- Scope:- Project scope includes the objectives and requirements to be fulfilled for the completion of a Project. Project scope affects/decide the cost and completion time of the Project. So it is advisable to set the scope of the project after appropriate study.
- Cost/ Budget:- The total cost estimation of a project is known as the budget of the Project.
- Time/Schedule:- It is the time to be taken in the completion of a project.
These three elements collectively affect the quality of a Project.
If we consider the quality of the project as the fourth element then all these four elements collectively affect the customer/ client satisfaction.
The combination of the first three elements is known as Project Constraints Triangle (sometimes Project Iron Triangle) whereas the combination of all four elements makes up the Project Constraints Diamond.
Fig. Project Constraints Triangle
Fig. Project Constraints Diamond
Explanation:- Suppose a mobile manufacturer decides to launch new mobile in the market in the coming period. Then mobile specifications and features ( like RAM, Display, Battery, etc.) would work as Project scope which further decides the cost/budget and time of the project. Now if the manufacturer changes the scope of the project, then the cost and time of the project would also reflect that change.
If the manufacturer wants to introduce the mobile in the market before the scheduled time of the project (means he wants to reduce the completion time of the project) then he has to diminish the scope of the project which further reduces the budget of the project. Similarly, thing happens when the manufacturer reduces the budget allotted for the project. That’s how the project constraint plays a very vital role in the completion of a project.
To know more about project constraints Click here