PMBOK Guidelines

The PMI / PMBOK Guidelines (Project Management Body of Knowledge)

So, what is the PMBOK method?

When you’re starting out as a project manager, it can be tough knowing how to get started. Luckily, there is a widely recognized project management method available to us. The PMBOK, or Project Management Body of Knowledge, is a compilation of terminology, concepts, and guidelines for project management. Its main purpose is to standardize a common library that project managers can draw from and use to ease communication across projects. All of these details are documented in a book called the Guide to the Project Management Body of Knowledge, which is authored by the Project Management Institute (PMI). From the PMBOK guidelines stems a project management methodology that leverages the concepts depicted in the PMBOK guide.

The PMBOK guidelines outline 5 process groups:

  • Initiating Group: processes that define a new project or phase, including authorization to start.
  • Planning Group: processes that set the scope, outline objectives, and highlight actions related to achieving objectives.
  • Executing Group: processes that contribute to completing work to meet project specifications.
  • Monitoring and Controlling Group: processes to track and review the project’s progress and performance, and triggers change when the project is heading off course.
  • Closing Group: processes that finalize project activities and close out the project.

Because projects vary, process groups should not be viewed as life cycle phases, but as guiding workflow concepts that can be applied to any stage in a project’s life cycle. For example, one phase of a project may be to release a feature to clients. The initiating processes might include getting the go-ahead from the development manager, while the planning processes would include figuring out how to do the deployment. An executing process would be the deployment itself, and the monitoring and controlling group may overlap with the planning and execution process groups—if issues come up during execution, the planning processes may have to be revisited. Finally, the closing processes would be the wrap up and sign off on this part of the project.

When managing a project, PMBOK has identified 10 knowledge areas which can be integrated into the process groups as supporting elements:

  • Project Integration Management: processes used to coordinate, bring together, and refine activities and their interactions.
  • Project Scope Management: processes around managing the project’s scope or boundaries ensuring requirements are within limits.
  • Project Time Management: processes needed to guarantee project delivery by the deadline.
  • Project Cost Management: processes involving budget allocations based on the projected timeline.
  • Project Quality Management: processes that define project completion, success, and performance.
  • Project Human Resource Management: processes revolving around management of the project team, including hiring, re-assigning roles, and boosting team morale.
  • Project Communications Management: processes responsible for the flow of knowledge and information within the team and with external stakeholders.
  • Project Risk Management: processes related to preparing for and mitigating risks.
  • Project Procurement Management: processes for acquiring resources, as well as considering the cost of them.
  • Project Stakeholders Management: processes focused on identifying who the stakeholders are, how to best communicate with them, and how to integrate their feedback into project work.

How OneDesk makes use of the PMBOK guidelines:

The PMBOK guidelines are recognized around the world as the standard followed by the PMI. Using OneDesk, you can use the PMBOK method easily. The reporting feature helps with monitoring and controlling processes, while time and work logging help with managing time. OneDesk also allows you to track requirements, which tie in integration and scope management, as well as covering part of the planning process group. This makes OneDesk the ideal software for project managers wanting to follow the PMBOK guidelines.

You can check out our website or book a demo with us to find out more about the services we offer.

Photo Credit: “Color Pipes” / Audi_insperation / CC BY

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