A project is a set of coordinated actions to achieve fixed objectives and produce one or more results on the target audience.
A project must have a definite duration annual or multi-year. All projects are set up and implemented by a project team that is coordinated by the project manager.
Every project needs human, material, and financial resources. To summarize clearly and synthetically, every project must answer to goals To achieve the objectives, it is necessary to deploy actions or activities which will lead to results.
Project life cycle
Before you start editing a project, you must make sure of its necessity. Start by identifying the needs, analyze them, and look for ways to respond. For this, there are some steps that you must not miss:
- Identify all the stakeholders, starting with the target audience, but also the team that will carry out the project, the potential partners and any other actor who could help in the assembly and the implementation of your project.
- Every project must start with a diagnosis of the existing situation, which will make it possible to identify the needs precisely.
- Based on the diagnosis and needs identified, you will be able to set the objectives of your project.
- You can already start to build the team that will manage the project, as well as the coordinating manager. Depending on the type of your project, you may have several coordinators. For example, for a project in the field of education, you will need an educational coordinator and an operational coordinator who will take care of all the administrative, financial, etc.
- Another critical step is the study of good practices. Look for projects similar to the one you want to work on as this will help you not only to give you ideas but also to learn about the difficulties and risks that others have had to face, their solutions, etc.
- You will finish this first stage of the project lifecycle by defining the duration of your project and establishing an operational program.
In the preparation phase of a project, the preliminary study is necessary to ensure the viability and feasibility of the project We must identify:
- The difficulties that you faced while working on a project. Their identification will allow you to start already thinking about prevention solutions. At the same time, also identify the risks (ex .: partner, illness, etc.)
It is essential to determine the results of your project:
- outputs, deliverables. Some are transferable (like booklets, websites, vademecum, productions media, etc.) and others that are measurable (increase in English level, specific technical skills, improvement of living conditions, etc.) for the latter there is need to prepare evaluation methods to prove the difference between the situation before and after the project.
By knowing the results of your project, you can define the actions and the activities necessary for their realization.
Do not forget the most important thing for the realization of a project: the constitution of a project team and the setting up of a network of partners.
You will then need to establish:
- a strategy to achieve your project and answer the basic questions: what, when, who, how?
- the technical feasibility of your project: do you have the necessary skills? otherwise can you mobilize partners for this purpose?
- It is also necessary to determine the principles of operation and monitoring of your project: frequency of meetings, meetings, virtual/physical, analysis of achievements/adjustments, etc.
- For a project to proceed in the right conditions, it makes you establish a program of execution with the tasks to accomplish with the people who will ensure their realization.
Operational management of project
The operational management of the project consists of the useful part in the implementation of the actions, the realization of the results, the administrative and financial follow-up, the coordination of the planning and the necessary adjustments, etc.
We must therefore carefully follow:
- The implementation of the project.
- The actual implementation of planned actions and activities.
- Throughout the project the risks must be monitored as they may appear at any time and endanger the achievement of your project.
- The respect of the calendar to be able to readjust it if necessary.
The management of a project also involves a constant verification of the products in progress, the relevance of the estimates made, and the implementation of the adjustments required for the smooth running of the project.
Make sure that the periodic reports and meetings that you have set up take place, that the problems that arise are solved in good time and that there is good communication between all the stakeholders of the project.
The realization of the project consists in the actual execution of the planned activities, according to the established schedule. This step requires permanent monitoring of the project team and verification of compliance with the technical and quality criteria included in the specifications of the products to be produced.
Project realization is the heart of the life cycle of a project. For this step to go well, do not forget to specify to all stakeholders:
- Audits and follow-up that must be carried out throughout the implementation of the project
- What to do in case of problems
- The modalities to report on the progress of the project
- The monitoring tables to be completed by each stakeholder
- The specifications of the products to be produced
We must ensure that each actor knows exactly what to do and when. This will result in respect for the planning you have made in carrying out your project.
The evaluation of the project is critical both during and after. This is an aspect often treated lightly, while most funders will give it a lot of importance because it is this step that will allow them to measure the effectiveness of their investment.
We must start by identifying first:
- The indicators and methods you will use to perform this assessment.
- It is also necessary to know if the project will have a continuation of the dimension of the durability of a project is often a criterion of evaluation for a financier.
- Identify areas for improvement as your project progresses: this will not only allow you to take corrective measures and not make the same mistakes again, but they will serve as a good practice for you. other project leaders like you
- You must identify the elements produced by your project that can be reused later and their conservation
We must evaluate:
- At least at the beginning of your project, middle term and in the end the realized products (compliance with the specifications, quality, etc.)
- The realization of the planned actions
- The impact of the project on the beneficiaries
- When evaluating your project, it is necessary to compare the actuals results obtained with those that were planned and explain if there are any differences noted.
Diffusion of the project
Dissemination of the project consists of the communication and the transfer of the results to the target audiences. It is constituted by all the communication plan that you will define and implement around your project.
This step has several purposes:
- Valuing the work of stakeholders and sharing experiences
- Contribute to good practice for other carriers of projects
- Expand the scope of those who will benefit from your project
We hope that we cover all the information you need to lunch your project successfully. If you have any questions about this article, leave us a comment. We appreciate your opinion, feedback, and suggestions on our website.