A project differs substantially from business as usual, the customary manner in which an organization conducts its day-to-day affairs. A project has a particular goal and budget, and delivers notable change. Project managers have numerous responsibilities, from managing day-to-day project activities to ensuring that the project spends its resources wisely, and meets its time, budget and quality goals PMP certification cost .
It depends on numerous capabilities and resources, follows a definitive life cycle with start and end dates, and incorporates the contributions of a variety of people who may enter, leave and re-enter the process as needed. Most importantly, a project involves agreed-upon – and highly specific – plans. A project represents a temporary management effort undertaken to achieve a defined beneficial outcome.
Project management always involves various audits to ensure that activities remain on track, ending with “post project reviews” that summarize how well the company achieved its return on investment. Most organizations have numerous projects under way at any one time. Many companies group these separate projects into a portfolio governed by an internal portfolio management unit. A company’s program, as contrasted with its portfolio, involves both new projects and business-as-usual activities.
A typical project might be phasing in a company’s new billing system. A typical program, on the other hand, could be a multiproject plan for the organization to begin marketing its products in foreign markets. An organization’s program is part of its strategic plan; its projects support that plan and help make it feasible. Organizations must evaluate projects in advance to ensure that the potential rewards outweigh the potential risks, and should not commission any project without conducting this vital risk-reward analysis.