Project planning is one of the critical and essential operations that must be undertaken before starting any project. Irrespective of your business, project planning should be done with the utmost consideration.
Projects can differ on various aspects like the scale of the project, the number of people involved, the budget, the completion date, and many more.
However, project planning should be prioritized irrespective of the number of different aspects. Project planning has numerous benefits to businesses if done correctly.
However, the staff or the team leaders should ensure that the project planning is done close to perfection. Project planning is the primary way to streamline the project management process, and if this process is compromised, the business could run into several unwanted problems.
12 Reasons Why Project Planning Is Essential
Several factors make project planning necessary. These factors enable firms to capitalize on benefits reaped from undertaking a project. We will list the essential aspects of project planning, so let’s look at them.
1: Project Success
Project planning is vital for project success. Unfortunately, many projects eventually fail due to a lack of planning. The estimate is close to 39%. No firm would want to see its project go downhill and avoid this hazard. Therefore, they have to take proper planning measures.
Project planning ensures that before the project is initialized, the resource required to make the project a success should be there. If there is a lack of resource planning before the project starts, the chance of it becoming a failure rises to 20%.
The resource planning for the project is hence an essential factor. Therefore, project managers or team leads should do proper resource planning. Otherwise, they would have to face unfavorable repercussions.
Another crucial thing that the project managers and team leads should determine is that the sub-task of the projects are assigned properly.
As the project planning process is being done, if the assigning is done with ignorance, this would cause great confusion among the team working on the project. Everyone’s roles in the project should be clearly defined.
When a project is being worked on, its end goals may change. What should be kept in mind by team leads and project managers is that there should be flexibility in project management.
While project planning, those who draft the plan should open up room for immediate changes and ensure that the project shouldn’t be too rigid; otherwise, a change in priority won’t be catered.
The important thing that should be stressed is the knowledge of the project manager or team lead. Unfortunately, many projects slipped away due to a need for more understanding of the project manager. Therefore, his management skills should be appropriately assessed when managing a project with a team lead or project manager.
A coherent and optimal project planning done by experts and experienced people in charge, considering all factors or failures, could avoid common loopholes and mistakes. When this is done, it ensures that the project results in success.
2: Communication Enhancement
Communication is parallel to the project’s success to ensure that a project’s processes and procedures are done smoothly. While project planning, those who have a charge for the project should create a proper communication channel.
Projects can be departmental or cross-departmental, where communication has a pivotal role. For example, communication can be done quickly if a project is related to a specific department.
Whereas if the project requires the input of various departments’ information, communication plays a key role. Cross-departmental projects mean the involvement of different staff working together.
This could mean staff among themselves would be unfamiliar with each other to bring comfort in this kind of situation. Communication plays an important role.
While project planning, it is all-important that staff participation should be encouraged, so the gateways for communication open up. Project planning ensures that each staff member could share their opinion. Along with the added benefit of communication boost, this practice also increases the motivation of the employees.
During project planning, the project managers should choose the optimal communication channel. For example, primary communication channels could include team communication software or online meeting software.
The utmost convenience of everyone should be ensured while selecting communication software. Also, if a communication channel has been opted for, it should be used rather than using different modes because this would confuse them.
3: Performance Tracking
Project planning is necessary as it could make performance tracking easy. When project planning is done, different goals are set. This goal and project planning could help measure not just the project’s success but also knowing how effective and efficient the employees were.
Performance measurement is necessary as it shows the credibility and competence of the employees. For example, if a firm sets a project of increasing revenue by 5% in a quarter, then at the end of the quarter, they could undertake required evaluations.
These evaluations could include determining the time taken to complete the project, strategy implementation done by staff, and how much cost is incurred in achieving the results.
One of the best practices is doing performance evaluations relating to a project using KPIs. The KPIs (Key Performance Indicators) reflect the results in quantitative values.
As the results are in measurable and numerical values, they become easy to understand for analytical purposes. Also, these quantitative results values could be calculated easily.
4: Reduces Employee Turnover
Employee turnover is a significant issue for firms. Employee turnover measures the number of employees leaving a firm over a certain period.
Any business would want to keep its employee turnover low as it would have to bear the cost of hiring and workflow irregularities caused by employees leaving. Project planning helps in keeping employee turnover low.
The project planning phase, if done by task or project managers with the collaboration of other team members, could be a motivation booster for the employees.
If the employees are taken into consideration and the project planning process, they would feel like the project managers own them. This would improve their productivity as there would be improvement in their motivation level.
A collaborative environment would do wonders for the firm’s environment. Employees being trusted with their skills would improve their relationship with their employers, resulting in low employee turnover.
5: Risk Assessment
Project planning is vital because it helps in risk assessment. As the project planning is done, the project manager and team leads could identify the potential risks and threats. Risk management improves with project planning.
Risk management is an essential factor that plays a significant role in the project success. About 27% of projects fail due to poor risk management.
Risk assessment is also beneficial as it helps a project manager to take corrective action if they find any flaws in the project before initialization.
If the flaws and loopholes are identified with risk assessment, rectifying them ensures that the project will be completed on time and the project’s progress wouldn’t be hindered. On the other hand, running into threats while the project is underway could lead to delays or even project failures.
Risk assessment is also vital as it could help the project manager decide whether they should gauge the project or if it is lucrative enough. They shouldn’t be preceded if the high risk is associated with the project.
6: Usability Of Resources
Project planning is also necessary to ensure the proper usability of resources. The project manager and team leaders will work on resource allocation as the project planning is conducted. The resource allocation would ensure that all the resources are available to make the project successful.
If the project allocation is ignored, a firm might have a surplus of resources that would be of minimal use. As the business allocates resources, they ensure that resources are there and the optimal use of resources is also provided.
Minimal use of resources while having them in surplus is a business expenditure, adversely affecting profit margins. On the other hand, resource allocation ensures resources are capitalized to ensure optimal usage and operations’ efficiency is guaranteed.
7: Employees’ Intellectual Enhancement
Project planning is the collaboration process, which causes a great flow of information. Several activities involved in project planning, like reporting, discussions, and brainstorming, lead to building up the intellectual capital of the employees.
As intellectual capital is built up, employees become pioneers in their skills. This also ensures that while working on projects in the future, the employees will be far more learned and will deliver the task effectively and efficiently.
The data and information collected from the project could be stored, and this could be used when the projects in the future are being worked on. This will help task managers or project managers use past data for reference if they run into the same problem they faced.
8: Cost Management
Project planning also ensures cost management. One of the essential project management practices is cost analysis. Before the project is initiated, cost analysis is done, a separate budget is set out for it, and firms need to ensure that this project cost is within the projected cost by a manageable margin.
If in any project planning stage, the budgeting factor is ignored, this would mean that the firm is welcoming monetary problems. Budgeting and cost analysis restrict any chance of overspending and ensure proper cost management.
9: Quality Management
Good project management ensures inch-perfect quality. When project planning is done, decide how they want their final product. For example, a product-based firm would have a proper image in mind for its final product.
As they have the image of what they want, they would be willing to ensure that the delivery of the product would be as such as they have expected. At every stage of production, every stakeholder involved in the project would be willing to ensure perfect quality.
As a result, the delivery of the project is done with excellence. This would lead to greater customer satisfaction and eventually result in customer retention.
10: Time Management
Project planning ensures a project is completed within the specified time. A schedule is created for each activity when the project planning is undertaken.
The time of start and completion is set for each sub-task. This project management practice ensures that everything is done according to time. Scheduling and time tracking is necessary as it sets timely goals for employees that should be completed.
This practice helps employees consider deadlines and make the work more interesting. Also, setting time limits helps in project completion on time.
11: Blueprint For Project
Project planning is like creating blueprints and roadmaps for projects. Therefore, project planning is the backbone of the strategic management of the project.
A project planning draft is the essential document with the most important information relating to a project. This document ensures that the project execution is done in an organized manner.
The final draft of the project plan is documented. It could be saved on paper or digitally. This document should be necessarily documented. The project planning document is useful when the project execution and is often referred to when the project implementation is done.
The Bottom Line
We have gone through a detailed list of factors that make project planning vital. Businesses that practice project planning minizine the chase of project failure.
Ensuring efficiency in every step of project management can be guaranteed with project planning. The best way to do project planning is by using project management software.
These software are specially designed and tailored so that project planning can be done seamlessly. They also offer numerous functionalities and features that ensure ease and flexibility in every key component of project planning.
The only project planning and management software you need is Week Plan. It is a project management tool with super-rich features and useful functionalities.
This software is equally preferable for both small and large businesses. Week Plan is a well-rounded software that can ensure flexible workflow and ease in the planning process. An additional benefit of using this software is that it can also be used as a time management tool, ensuring promptness in project management.
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