One distinguishing feature of projects is that each is tailored toward some unique end-product or result. That uniqueness implies that every project has to be defined anew and a scheme created telling everyone involved what to do. Deciding and specifying what should be done is the main function of project planning.
A complete project plan in summary covers project requirements, works tasks, responsibilities of each member of project management team, schedules, budgets, actual project performance, time frames, cost breakdowns, corrective actions to be taken, project control etc.
The Project Manager has a personal responsibility of assembling all the finer details required to accomplish the objectives of a project in a systematic and structured manner.
Before generating a plan for the project, the Project Manager and the entire project management team must:
- Trace the origin of the set objective.
- Understand fully the reasons why the objectives were set.
- Understand fully the current status of the financiers of the project.
- Analyze and understand fully the risks associated with the achievement of the set project objectives.
- Involve all the key stakeholders in the design of the project plan right from the scratch.