Introduction to Project Management Project management is the management of resources to complete a defined task in a specific period of time. The project manager is the person delegated the responsibility of managing the project. There exists a systematic approach to the art and science of project management. One needs good project managers to execute the whole project management. We look at the important stages of project management. Project Concept Ideas are brainstormed and different opinions solicited. An outline of the project is drawn up and thus there is clarity of vision among stakeholders. Project Initiation In the initiation stage, the nature and scope of the project are defined. The project manager has to comprehend the customer’s unique and specific requirements, budgets, stakeholder analysis and more. Project Planning This is an important and integral part of project management. Only if you plan, can you see things in perspective. Planning involves the schedule of the tasks, costs and time estimation, risk assessment and more. There are several planning tools available to chart out the management of the project. Project Planning is done using graphs, statistics and charts. Thanks to project management software, the difference between the initial plan and ultimate outcome is becoming smaller day by day. A good project manager has to be a good planner. Not only must he/she plan meticulously, the plan must be implemented efficiently and effectively. The resources must be utilized fully, deadlines met and the expected results delivered. Project planning includes defining how to plan, obtaining approval to start work, budgeting, scheduling, estimation of time and expense, selecting planning members, identifying deliverables and creating the work sub tasking structure. Management of Resources Resources can be money, skilled workers, time and infrastructure. These resources must be utilized efficiently for optimum report. Human resource management involves the utilization of the skills of the employees, forming teams, imparting training and managing people as a cohesive unit. "© 2011 Apptivo Inc. All rights reserved. Project Monitoring and Controlling Monitoring and controlling involves identification of potential issues and problems. This is so because corrective action can be performed. Activities in the monitoring and controlling include measurement of project milestones and comparing project variables. Such variables include scope, effort, and expense with the project management plan. Project Management Software Modern project management involves the use of project management software to automate all the activities of project management. Online project management software incorporates collaboration between employees and teams. Each member of the team can see his allocated task, the schedule of his task and documentation. These software’s give the organization an edge over its competitors by saving time, money, and delivery of superior quality products. Online project management tools have a simpler user interface and a short learning curve. Experienced project managers can leverage their skills optimally by using sophisticated online project management software such as Apptivo’s Project Management Apps. Finally project management has come of age and no organization can ignore its importance. Are you using project management software? If so, which one? - Maya Pillai is passionate about helping small businesses and professionals. She is a blogger for Apptivo's Small Business University. "© 2011 Apptivo Inc. All rights reserved.