Guidelines are very important in project management. A guideline is an important official recommendation indicating different policies, procedures or standard on how something should be accomplished.
In fact, every project requires a guideline in order to become successful. It helps deliver the right outcome required by an organization and its stakeholders. It also creates deliverables that meet the agreed requirements during the contract building. Guidelines also help project managers stay within the financial budget and it also helps them organize the operation as well as manage risks that can put the entire team and project in jeopardy. The thing is that guidelines serve as the basis on how everything should be done to achieve the project goal.
It is important to take note that projects sometimes fail for various reasons. These include failure to communicate with the stakeholders regarding the development of the project, lack of attention on the work project, and producing expensive solutions to very simple problems. Lastly, the insufficient attention to the project management planning and monitoring can also lead to the failure of projects. Thus, guidance can help the project manager manage and also avoid problems.
Guidelines deal with the what, who, why, when and how of the project activities. It describes the many characteristics of a project and how should it be managed. It also scales the projects based on duration and criticality thus most project managers use flowcharts and checklist to keep track of the project tasks.
All guidelines should be documented as part of the project management documentation for future references. It is also important for the project manager to be able to keep track of the changes and include it in the document for the others to follow upon the implementation.
This term is defined in the 5th edition of the PMBOK.