A project management plan (PMP) is a document that describes how a project is to be carried out. A PMP is a living document, and it should be updated as the project progresses and new information becomes available.
Project management plans can be written in a variety of formats, depending on the needs of the project. For example, they can be as simple as a list of tasks to be completed, or they can include a more detailed description of how the project will be implemented. The purpose of the plan is to ensure that the project is carried out in the most efficient and effective way possible.
In this guide, you will learn how to write a PMP for your project. You will learn about the different types of PMPs, and you will find out how to use them to help you manage your project effectively.
## Types of Project Management Plans
There are several types of project management plans that you can use. Each type has its own advantages and disadvantages, so you need to choose the one that best suits your project and your needs.
## Task Lists
Task lists are the simplest type of PMP, and they are used to describe the tasks that need to be done to complete a project. A task list is usually written in the form of a table. Each row in the table represents a task, and each column represents a type of information that is needed to carry out the task. The following is an example of a task list:
As you can see, the task list contains three columns. The first column contains the name of the task, the second column contains a description of what the task is, and the third column contains information that will be needed to complete the task (for example, the person who is responsible for the task).
The advantage of task lists is that they are very easy to create and update. They are also very simple to read and understand. However, they are not very flexible, because they do not allow for any changes to be made to the project once it has started. If a task needs to be added or removed from the project, it will have to be re-written in a new task list. Task lists are also limited in terms of the number of tasks that can be included in a single document. If you have more than a few tasks to include, you may need to create a separate task list for each task.
## Work Breakdown Structures
Work breakdown structures (WBS) are more complex than task lists. A WBS breaks down a project into a series of smaller tasks, which are then further broken down into even smaller tasks. Each of these smaller tasks is assigned to a person or group of people, who are then responsible for carrying out the tasks. This makes it easier to track who is doing what, and how long it will take them to complete their tasks. A work breakdown structure is also more flexible than a simple task list, because it can be used to include tasks that are not yet known, or that have not yet been created. It is also easier to change a WBS once the project has started, because you can add or remove tasks from the WBS without having to re-write the entire document.
A WBS can be created in a number of different ways. The most common way is to use a computer-based tool, such as Microsoft Project. However, you can also use a paper-based WBS, or you can create your own WBS using a spreadsheet. The advantage of using a computerized WBS is that it will allow you to easily track the progress of your project, as well as the status of each of the tasks in your WBS. The disadvantage is that you will need to have access to a computer in order to use the tool, and there is also the possibility that you may not be able to access the tool at the time that you need it. If this is the case, it may be easier to create your WPS using a paper WBS or a spreadsheet, and then transfer the information to the computer when you are ready to use it.
## Gantt Charts
Gantt charts are similar to work breakdown structures, in that they break down the project into smaller tasks and then further break down each of those tasks. The main difference is that a gantt chart is a graphical representation of a project, rather than a textual representation of it. This allows you to see how much time each task will take to complete, and when the task will be completed. Gantts can also be created using computer-aided tools, but they are most commonly created using a pen and paper. A good way to start is to draw a simple line graph on a piece of paper, with the horizontal axis representing time and the vertical axis representing the amount of work that is left to do. Once you have drawn your first line graph, you should start to fill in the rest of the graph, using the information that you have about the project and the people who are working on it. The more information you have, the more accurate the graph will be, and therefore the more useful it will be to you. Once the graph has been completed, it can then be transferred to a digital format, if you want to make it available on a computer.
In addition to the advantages that gantts have over task lists and WBSs, they also have some disadvantages. For example, they can be very difficult to read if you have a lot of information in the graph. This is because the information is spread out over a large area, and it is not easy to see the overall progress of the project at a glance. In addition, it is difficult to make changes to the graph once you have created it. You have to go back to the drawing board and start all over again, which can be a time-consuming and frustrating process.
## Project Management Software
There are many different types of project management software that you can use to manage your projects. Some of the most popular tools include Microsoft Project, Microsoft Project Server, and Microsoft SharePoint. These tools are often referred to as “project management software” because they are designed to help you manage the different aspects of your projects, including tasks, schedules, and budgets. Microsoft Project is probably the most well-known of these tools, and is the one that we will be focusing on in this chapter.