Just What is Project Planning?

Published May 21, 2019 by Teresa Marshall

Hand on a Board

Being a project manager in Vancouver, I know that there is always an endless amount of planning. There is no magic to project planning, nor is there an exact science. Every project plan will vary depending on the project scope & deliverable. Fundamentally, project planning is creating a set of documents that defines the scope, deliverables, timeline, budget and resourcing for a project.

Information Gathering

One thing for sure is that you need to have enough information to create a plan. Before you start to gather information think about – think good, better & best – how much is really needed and what type of information will be useful. Information gathering can be costly and delay your project from the onset. The type of project will dictate what’s needed.

Minimize Reporting

Demanding paperwork and reports for the simple sake of having “things” documented may serve no useful purpose and will result with team members viewing project management as nothing but busywork and additional bureaucracy. However, glossing over and just getting to “get to the real work” will likely result in pointless and costly rework; not to mention client frustration & re-runs of “I told you so”.

Ensuring the project planning documentation is sufficient but not overkill is as much an art as science. I can usually tell I've struck the right balance when all stakeholders are well informed but the documentation doesn't take more than 20% of my time.