Why is it best to have six or less life-cycle phases in an EPM system?
Dividing or organizing the project into phases is a key aspect of Enterprise Project Management. Breaking down the series of tasks into smaller components and grouping them into phases helps in reviewing the project direction. Usually each phase has gate review meetings to track the progress of the project. Having more phases increases the time the project mangers has to spend in preparing the project documents and attending the review meetings. The most commonly used phasing model is discusses below.
This model consists of six phases namely Initiation, Definition, Design, Development, Implementation, Closure/Follow-up.
In the Initiation phase the project proposals are made and reviewed by all the parties. Feasibility and scope of the project and budget are discussed and "proof of concept" and reports are generated with the terms. The project officially start with the approvals at end of the initiation phase.
In the Definition phase the functional and operative requirements are discussed and presented for approval. The list of guidelines and requirements are finalized in the definition phase and can't be modified further.
The design phase involves the planning, communication methods and risk assessment for the project. It is often said that success of a project is evaluated based on the project design and planning. Work allocation to the resources and timelines are key factors developed in the design phase.
In the development phase the developers work on creating the product according to the requirements. The team managers play an important role in this phase by allocating the work to the resources and extracting the output.
In the Implementation phase the actual result of the project is visible and evaluated based on the requirements met in the definition and design phases.
In the Closure/Follow-up phase is the final reports are generated, training to users and instructions on using the product are provided.
Daniel Raymond (2008), Project Management Handbook,The Six phases of project Management.
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