The broad term of project management encompasses a number of aspects involved in meeting the goals necessary to complete a project successfully. An effective manager must take into account four essential elements which include resources, money, time and scope.
Resources are the people, materials and equipment necessary to complete the project. People who might possibly be part of the project are employees, vendors and subcontractors. Materials and equipment are dependent on the nature of the project.
The project manager is likely to be evaluated on whether or not the project is finished within budget. Money flow requires careful attention. Contingencies such as weather problems, supply issues or changes in design can have a negative impact on the project’s final cost. In order to maximize profit the manager must keep the actual cost at or below the estimated cost by remaining on schedule and effectively staying within the scope of the project.
When managing time the project manager must understand and communicate the tasks required, create and manage a schedule so that things run smoothly, and manage the critical path for successful project management.
Scope in project management includes the project size, the goals set, and the requirements necessary to meet those goals. Changes in scope must be met with revision of the budget either by amending the time schedule or by adjusting of resources needed.
Project management can be very rewarding but it requires practice, networking with other successful project managers, and keeping up with trends through reading and research.
This term is defined in the 3rd and the 4th edition of the PMBOK.