Direct and Manage Project Work – Part 1
Knowledge and skills needed
Monitoring and controlling project work takes place throughout the project and in order to master these processes you need cost-cutting skills that help you gather, analyse, organize, and communicate information.
You will also need to employ a problem solving skills such as stakeholder management and decision making skills.
You will want to keep the following list of cross cutting skills in mind as you read the rest of this series of articles:
- Data gathering techniques
- Decision-making techniques
- Information management tools, techniques, and methods
- Leadership tools and techniques
- Oral and written communication techniques, channels, and applications
- Presentation tools and techniques
- Problem solving tools and techniques
- Project management software
- Relationship management
- Stakeholder impact analysis
- Targeting communications to intended audiences
Questions in the monitoring and controlling process group account for 25% of the exam. So although there when many questions about the tools, techniques, and outputs, there will also be quite a few to have to do with the cross cutting skills listed above.
Direct and Manage project work
This process uses information from the project management plan and the performance reports and compares the two.
Direct and Manage project work is the process of tracking, reviewing, and regulating the progress to meet the performance objectives defined in the project management plan.
To make a start, I will look at the differences between monitoring, and controlling.
When monitoring project work, you are performing the following activities:
- Collecting information about the project performance
- Providing forecasts for future work
- Tracking and analyzing risks
- Communicating the status of the project
When controlling the work, you are:
- Comparing the information with the project management plan
- Compiling and analyzing the information
- Developing preventative action plans to keep the project with in the variance thresholds or tolerance
- Developing corrective action plans to bring the project back within the variance thresholds
- Recommending defect repairs four processes that all poor performance
- Submitting change requests to implement the preventative and corrective actions, defect repairs, or other necessary changes
The PMBOK Guide defines these two terms as:
Monitor. Collect project performance data with respect to a plan, produced performance measures, and reports and disseminate performance information.
Control. Comparing actual performance with planned performance, analyzing variances, assessing trends to affect process improvements, evaluating possible alternatives, and recommending appropriate corrective action as needed.
You will note that many of the actions above take place in other processes such as “monitor and control project risks”, “report performance”, and other control processes.
You may consider monitor and control project work as the parent process to most of the other monitoring and control processes.
The inputs of Direct and Manage project work
Where does the information you are monitoring come from? The following diagram explains this: