What is a project management plan?

Whether you are a newbie project manager or still considering getting into to project management, you need to have a solid understanding of what a project management plan is. There are a lot of misconceptions that a project management plan is a project schedule. Although a project management plan will have elements of a schedule to it, it’s much more than that.

What is a project management plan?

If you are looking to get qualified to help you become a project manager by taking courses such as the PMP qualification, you will need to have a good understanding of a project management plan to pass the course. So, here is all you need to know about what a project management plan is and how you will use it as a project manager.

What is a project management plan?

A project management plan is a formal document which involves all the major parties and needs to be approved before a project can go ahead. It will in detail define how the project will be carried out, monitored and controlled with a timeline. The project manager, the project team and key stakeholders will need to be involved when creating the project management plan, as everyone involved will need to be on the same page about the whole project.

What is required for the project management plan?

A project management plan will have many components to it. Here is all the information that your project management plan will need:

  • The project aims and objectives
  • The project deliverables
  • The project schedule, including the software you will use for this
  • The resources that are required for the project
  • The communication plan to highlight who and what will be communicated at various stages of the project
  • The risk management is undertaken to ensure risks are identified and plans are put in place to mitigate them
  • Quality guidelines to ensure the quality expectations are met

How to create a project management plan?

There are options when it comes to creating a project management plan. The first option being that you can start from scratch and build the document yourself, you can do this by including all the elements needed for the project management plan, as highlighted above. If you do this, you can use your own version over several projects you take on during the course of your career. It can be a useful skill to have as a project manager.

Alternatively, there are a number of project management plan templates that you can find online to help you build the perfect plan. It’s best to do some research and find the right template that you think will best suit your project.

Who uses the project management plan?

To start with the project management plan will be used as a baseline, starting point of the project. It will provide a clear picture of how and when the project will run. Once the project has started, it can be used to track performance and the work carried out against what is detailed in the plan. This can help the project run smoothly and ensure that the project team are on the right course. Once the project is completed, any deviations from the project can be recorded.

All major parties will be using the project management plan including the project manager, the project team as well as the key stakeholders. However, it will be of most use to the project manager as they are running the project and are responsible for it.

More on how to become a project manager and project management jobs.