today I’m going to describe some problems with Processes and Procedures within Projects. First of all what is Process, and what is Procedure?
A process is a set of activities that interact to achieve a result. A procedure is a document written to support a “policy directive”. A procedure is designed to describe who, what, where, when, and why by means of establishing corporate accountability in support of the implementation of a “policy”.
Now, for managing Project almost every company has prescribed Processes and Procedures. And that is good. Without that one severe problem will occur during the Project. Every single time when new Project starts, Project Manager and the Team will have to start from the scratch. With this said I mean that instead of Planning the Project, PM and the team should start with: “How will we do it? Which tools should be best, which approach should be best, etc”. and this is waste of time, which they do not have. On the other hand, if there are Processes and Procedures prescribed for managing Projects, PM and the Team will be familiar with them, and therefore they will know exactly how to manage the Project upfront. It doesn’t mean that it will leave them without usual problems in the project, but it will help you with Planning, Execution, and most important, Monitoring, Controlling the Project and when problem occur, fixing it!
As usual, there is always – BUT! I saw many time that Processes and Procedures are burden to the Project. why is it so? According to PMBoK: “Project is temporary endeavor undertaken for creating unique product, service or result!”. U N I Q U E! There is no such a thing like two SAME Projects. They can be similar, but they cannot be SAME! Therefore each and every Project should start with the simple, but important question: “Which Procedures and Processes should we change (adopt), which we should throw away, and which must be added as new ones for this particular Project?”. Procedures and Processes are not written in a stone. They are here for help PM and Project Team, but they should be adopted to every single Project. If Management insists to use every single Process and Procedure for every single Project, then they are on the wrong way.
Finally, PMBoK- The Project Management Body of Knowledge by PMI. It is framework which has a lot of Procedure and Processes inside. But also you can find inside remarks which says that they should be used if you need them, and how you need them. Of course, there are some exceptions. For example, Project without Project Charter could not exist, neither without Project Plan, WBS, etc. But other parts should be used if, and how you need them.
This situation regarding processes can be simply named as process tailoring, PM has a freedom to choose what processes to use in particular project. If you have complex project PM will use more processes, if its quite simple project – maybe only general processes (project charter, requirements, scope/schedule/cost baselines etc) is quite enough