What is a project management process and how do you implement it in your company?
The management of projects and processes is one of the key parts companies face in achieving success in their activities.
Processes and projects are actions that build the routine and the functioning of the organization. They support the work and purpose of the team, regardless of the branch or size of the company.
Do you know the difference between project and process management, their concepts and what the relationship between them is? In this article, we’ll explain the concept of each one by pointing out individual characteristics and giving management tips.
Continue reading to learn how to do project management well and create processes that are fundamental to the growth of your business!
What is a project management process? Read about it and then implement it in your business
What is the difference between project and process management?
Although the two concepts are commonly confused and are directly interconnected, they have some differences. Projects and processes (also called operations) differ mainly in the fact that projects are temporary and unique, while processes are continuous and repetitive.
The concept of process management involves a sequence of routine activities that together make up the way a company works. They are repetitive and standardized actions that always end in the same result, with the objective of producing a product or service for a specific client or market, which will be reproduced systematically.
The characteristics of a process are:
- Continuous and routine work;
- Generate constant and standardized results;
- Be permanent and replicable;
- Correspond to the way in which an organization works;
- Increase customer value perception.
A project, according to the PMI – Project Management Institute, an international non-profit institution that associates project management professionals – is a temporary effort undertaken to create a unique product, service or result.
That is, a project is built with the intention of improving a process or creating unique results, unlike processes.
These are the characteristics of a project:
- Be temporary and unique;
- Have a beginning, middle and end;
- To break with the status quo of processes;
- Generate a unique result, such as a product or an improvement in processes;
- To have a progressive structure;
- Be connected to one or more processes within the organization;
- Have a defined scope and resources.
Types of processes in companies
Now that you know the difference between project and process management, let’s take a look at some of the types of processes that exist in organizations. They are as follows:
1- Primary / essential processes:
They are the most important processes, because they come into direct contact with the customer. They are the most valuable in an organization because they aim to deliver value to customers. They are also the bridge between company and market. Therefore, they must be executed in the best possible way.
Primary processes establish the perception of value that the clients have of the company. Therefore, the ways in which the processes are performed are what define how the public sees the company, according to its mission, its values and its promise of service.
2- Support processes:
These are the processes that complement the primary processes. They are formally established and offer the support and reinforcement that the essential processes need.
The difference between these types of processes and the primary ones is that they are necessarily linked to primary processes and therefore do not confer value or direct customer relationships.
2- Management processes:
These processes are the ones that coordinate the activities of the previous processes. They are also formally established and do not offer customer value directly.
Their main objective is to measure, monitor and control processes so that they happen in the most effective and beneficial way for the company. Business management processes have a direct influence on quality control and, consequently, productivity.
How do you do project and process management well?
The execution of process routines must be intrinsically accompanied by constant improvement. According to Vicente Falconi, management consultant and creator of IMD (Institute of Management Development), routine is essential for the proper functioning of organizations.
“Standardization and training of people must be done to the utmost. It’s important never to put anyone to work without them feeling safe in what they’re going to do. “
In addition to investing in team training, it is important to keep in mind three types of actions when seeking excellence in project and process management:
- Actions that correct and prevent possible errors in processes;
- Improvement actions that develop processes;
- Creation of new projects, complementing existing processes.
The first and second are more focused on day-to-day management, which require less team effort but also bring proportionately slower results. The implementation of these actions is done through action plans and, afterwards, management should be in charge of updating the activity standards.
The use of performance indicators (KPIs)
To improve activity performance, it is important to use well-developed indicators and targets. Indicators (KPIs) are strong allies of a company’s success. When well used, they are useful for increasing learning, enriching the analysis and self-knowledge of the company, as well as being influential in generating ideas.
KPIs, however, should be well chosen and monitored so they do not become “villains.” When misused, they can become a way of bureaucratizing processes and putting pressure on employees.
The key is to gather all relevant management information and organize it so that it is possible to group and monitor the most relevant information according to the organization’s routine processes.
In this way, it will be easier to visualize the strengths and weaknesses of processes. This is where project management comes in, creating proposals that drive improvements and innovations in the routine and essential processes of the company.
Why Invest in Project Management?
Having a team responsible for project management is an investment for companies that want to start their processes. The optimization of processes must be continuous and constant and, therefore, do not give you exorbitant results.
Projects are actions that guarantee more “drastic” changes, and that, therefore, demand more efforts and resources. Having a qualified team that creates and manages these strategies is fundamental to innovate and to always be ahead in the market.
Learn how to build a good project:
- Be confident! First of all, you need to believe in what will be built.
- Have definite goals. A project will only work if you have established goals and, most importantly, that they are in line with reality.
- Choose the right people to form the team. Specialists and managers are important, but integrating other collaborators helps in engaging the action.
- Hold a kickoff meeting by defining key points. Clarify the project in the best possible way, define the roles of each employee and plan the use of resources.
- Execute! Do not forget to analyze indicators throughout the execution process to correct errors that, believe me, will happen during the process.
- Identify project risks, assess impacts, and if necessary communicate the changes to all people who will be impacted by them.
- Monitor and control the project. For each risk previously discussed, build a plan B. Establish deadlines, communicate well with the team, and finalize the project.
- Update the process definitions after the project and measure the gains that the actions brought to the organization.
Process and project management: lessons learned
To improve the management of projects and processes, the efforts placed in day-to-day activities that make up processes must be sustained by constant optimizations, according to the company’s strategy. These, added to projects, guarantee the continuous improvement of products and services.
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