The City and State where it is Located - project plan

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The report is about a project plan for a company that is planning to introduce a new product line. The launch of new product lines is a key part in business since it involves the investment of capital, the potential repercussions on the company's brand dependent on how the product performs in the market, and the profitability of the product to the firm. For the stakeholders, the project is a high-value investment because it defines their profitability once the product is delivered to the public. The project requires activities such pre-project meeting, product awareness campaign, cost evaluation, goal setting, project team selection and feedback on the product. The project plan will discuss the importance of Gannt charts and how they are used to make sure that these activities follow a critical path. The project plan shall also discuss the risk management procedure and measures to be applied in each case. Additionally, the project plan intends to address the scheduling of resources which ensure that cost is minimized. The program shall also address how the project time shall be reduced to ensure the project is completed on time. The plan shall also discuss the process of outsourcing to ensure the budget for the project is cut. The project plan shall also explain the monitoring procedure for the idea that ensures the product is launched as intended. Finally, the project plan shall discuss the detailed steps in successful project closure.

Gannt Charts

Gannt charts are essential tools for scheduling in project management. The charts are designed in a way that the activities are presented by bars located on the Y-axis and the duration represented on the X-axis. The chart was first structured by Karol Adamiecki in the mid1890. Karol Adamiecki was a polish engineer who worked in a steel rolling company and had lots of interest in management techniques. After 15 years, Henry Gannt a project consultant and engineer devised his charts which gained popularity and ended up been named after him. The original charts were tedious to prepare especially when projects changed. A change in a plan required amendment of the charts which involved redrawing it again (Nahmias, 2013) However, with the development of technology, the charts are now programmed into computers which make it easier to incorporate new changes in the project.

In our project, construction of the charts involves an in-depth thinking and understanding of all the tasks involved in the project which ensures the schedule adopted is workable. The activities involved in launching a new product line include pre-project meeting, product awareness campaign, cost evaluation, goal setting, project team selection and feedback on the product. A critical path for the task dependencies has to be identified to ensure a sequence in completing the tasks is established so that the project can be completed on time. For the project, the following Gannt chart was adopted.

Figure 1: Gannt Chart

The chart develops a sequence of how the activities should follow each other; first, there should be the pre-project meeting, project team selection, goal setting, Cost evaluation, product awareness campaign and finally the feedback on the product.

Risk Management

Identification of the risks is an essential part of managing the project. A risk is an uncertainty that may occur which may have both a positive and adverse effect on the objectives of a project. In launching of the new products, the process involves using the capital to create products without the knowledge of how they shall fair in the market. The process is therefore so uncertain since the company may end up incurring numerous losses. The method of risk management is based on four fundamental steps. The first step is identification. In this phase, the project team members recognize and describe risks that the project may face in future with an aim to avoid or minimize its consequence. In launching new products, the following risks may be encountered, poor product awareness campaign, poor channels of collecting feedback from the consumers and wrong cost evaluation.

The second step is analyzing the risk. The action involves identifying the consequence of the threat, identifying what stage in the project the identified risk may occur and determining how the risk can be eliminated; it may involve changing the project plan. In the project, the team members should classify every chance according to the categories. Analyzing the consequence of the risk is essential since it allows the team members to view both the positive and adverse sides of a threat rather than making conclusions based on the negative side of the risk (Burke, 2013). In some projects, a calculated risk may be taken to maximize the efficiency of the project or fasten the process of achieving the objectives. For example, in the project, the team members can lower the cost of the product. The action poses a risk of incurring losses but also favors capturing a huge market base which increases the company’s sales and boosts its profit.

The third step of risk management is an evaluation of the risk. In this step, the magnitude of the risk is determined based on combining the likelihood of occurrence and its consequence. From the conclusions, probability, and impact, the team members can make decisions as to whether the risk is acceptable or if the risk requires a corresponding action to treat it (Young, 2013). In this process, the team members should agree whether to undertake the calculated risks of not. The fourth step is risk response action. The step involves generation of a response to the corresponding risks. In this process, the project team members develop the best strategies to cover for all risks listed. For example, adopting the best product awareness campaign and evaluating the best channels to collect feedback; some channels of collecting feedback may be biased leading to weak conclusions. It is advisable for the team members to generate a response to even the smallest risks because, if they are left unattended, they shall eventually affect the objectives of the project.

Scheduling Resource

Scheduling Resource comprises of techniques used to calculate the resources required for the completion of a task and determining when they shall be required. Resources are broadly classified into two groups, consumable and re-usable. Consumable resources are supplies which are can only be used for a limited number of times whereas re-usable resources are resources that can be used indefinitely without been rendered useless. In launching new products, the resources required include human participants, machinery, and the prototype.

The scheduling process has three vital steps. The first step is allocation which involves identifying the type of resources needed to complete particular tasks. In this process, the team members have to list all the resources required for launching the products which include the prototype to be used in the product awareness campaign, human participants to be used in cost evaluation or machinery used in the product awareness campaign. The second step is identifying constraints experienced by every resource. In the project, the re-usable resources may have limited supply. Therefore, the team members have to modify the schedule to account for the limited availability over time. For example, the need for human participants in every activity may cause constraint on the resource. The third step in scheduling resources is aggregation, which involves the use of a histogram to show the fluctuation of remedies concerning time. In the project, the team members have to list the resources alongside their duration of occupancy in the form of days or hours.

The fourth step is future control of the supply of the resources depending on the time and resource constraints. The first approach is resource smoothing which applies when there is a time limit. The strategy has the aim of completing a task in the required timeframe without causing strain on the resource demand. The projects team members can achieve it by adjusting the activities of a schedule (Menesi & Hegazy, 2014).The other approach is resource leveling which applies when there is resource constraints. The approach has the primary aim of balancing the demand of resources to its supply. This is achieved by adjusting the start and finish dates of the task. In our project for example, for human participants taking part in the product awareness campaign, the duration dates can be adjusted concerning the first activities to ensure the availability of the resource when it comes to executing the task.

Reducing Project Duration

In project management, after scheduling the resources, it may arise that the project is behind time. A plan falls behind the time when it proves difficult to be completed in the given duration of time. Falling behind time occurs when there is a shortage of resources, poor quality of work leading to reworking and unbalanced allocation of resources for various tasks (Larson & Gray, 2013). When launching new products a project behind time tarnishes the reputation of the team members which tarnish the company’s brand and increases the cost associated with realizing the set objectives. It is therefore crucial that any offset in time is corrected and the project runs according to the original time frame.

The first technique of reducing project’s duration is crashing. Crashing involves increasing resources in a task with the aim of improving its rate of completion (Ballesteros-Perez, 2017). In launching new products, the company should increase the human participants to ensure all activities have the sufficient workforce. However, before crashing the project, the team members have to know the duration of the new tasks and its cost. The technique nevertheless is expensive since it increases the original budget in realizing the objectives.

The second technique involved is fast-tracking. Fast tracking is a technique where actions that were initially meant to be carried out sequentially are carried out parallel. This means that the operations are carried out simultaneously. For example, the team members in the project can decide to merge the product awareness campaign with collecting the products feedback. This saves the time that would have been used in obtaining the input separately. The technique is advantageous compared to crashing since it involves no additional costs. However, it increases the risk of wasting more time since there is the formulation of a new schedule which allows the tasks to be carried out in parallel.


Outsourcing in project management is the practice conducted by a company where it seeks outside help, in solving specific tasks, with the primary aim of reducing cost (Larson &Gray, 2013). Seeking outside help allows the managers of a project focus their resources and skills in conducting other crucial tasks. In launching new products, the company may outsource in cost evaluation. Outsourcing on cost valuation is essential since it allows professionals to calculate realistic values; if the company was evaluating the cost for itself, it would price its products so high that it would reduce its market base. Outsourcing is a risky decision. Therefore, specific practices have to be followed. The first practice is defining the project which includes its scope and schedule. The practice ensures project team members equip the contractors with accurate information which provides good proposals and favorable price quotes from the contractors. Such information may include the original costs of manufacturing the products and the company’s target market base which shall be used in cost evaluation or the urgency of the task which shall allow favorable price quotes from the contractors.

The other practice is ensuring the expertise of the contractor fits the task. The exercise may involve asking for an early proof model for the concept of the project. This ensures that the contractor fully understands the plan and that the functions carried out are professional and not experimental. From the results, the team members involved in launching the new product line may conclude whether to hire or leave the contractor without incurring losses.

The other practice is to tie payment to defined milestones. Milestones in a project serve as checkpoints of progress for the completion of specific tasks. In launching new products, the milestones may include, cost evaluation, product awareness campaign and feedback collection. Tying payment to signs ensures that the contractors work faster and efficiently so that they can get their payments. This ensures that the project is completed efficiently within the scheduled timeframe.

The other crucial practice is conducting due diligence on the contractor. The method involves conducting research about the contractor by checking feedbacks from other customers and checking their references ( Rivard and Aubert,2015). Another crucial aspect is signing written agreements. The practice ensures that the contractors have agreed to complete the task under the conditions that have been provided. The deal may also assure nondisclosure in the case of cost evaluation. In fact, the cost of the new products is disclosed to the public, the company’s competitors may price their products lower which may reduce the company’s profitability.

Monitoring process

In project management, the monitoring process involves the regular collection of information regarding activities or tasks of a project with the aim of studying their progress. In measuring the development of a plan, the project managers involved in launching the new products may use the earned value management system (Chen ,Chen & Lin, 2016).The systematic process is used to both cost and schedule control for project forecasting. Then process finds variances in projects by comparing the work performed and worked planned.

In order to assess the cost performance, specific measure indicators can be used. The first measure is the planned value or the budget cost of work schedule which is an approved budget for the work schedule to be completed by a particular date. The other measure is the Earned value which is an approved budget for work completed before a given time. It is also identified as the Budgeted cost of work performed. The other measure is the Actual cost which is the actual cost incurred for tasks completed by a specified date. In the project, the team members can view the planned value, earned value and actual expenses for all budgeted activities.

In tracking the progress of the project, comparison of the actual expenditure of the budget would not tell whether the project is over, under or on the budget (Fleming & Koppelman, 2016). Therefore, specific measures are adopted to know whether the project is behind or ahead of schedule, or it is, under, over or on the budget. The first indicator is schedule variance. The measure is the difference between the amount budget for the activities already done and that for activities planned to be done. In the project, the team member’s can view the fluctuation of the budget intended for product awareness campaign and from the results determine how the project is proceeding. The measure helps to tell whether the work is behind or ahead of the agreed schedule. The other measure is cost variance. The cost variance is the difference between the amount budget and the amount already used. The measure tells whether and by how much the project is over or under the budget.

Another measure is the Schedule Performance Index. This is the ratio of the budget approved for tasks done, to the approved budget for the works planned. The test indicates the amount the project is behind or ahead of the set schedule (Fleming & Koppelman, 2016). The other step is the Cost Performance Index which is a ratio of the approved budget for tasks done to the actual expenditure for the work. The indicator shows the value of task done compared to the cost paid for it. The measures, in general, are used in monitoring the progress of activities involved in a project.

Project Closure

This is the last phase of a project which ensures an accurate measure as to whether the project went as planned or whether it met the requirements set by the company or customer (Young, 2013). In order to close a project successfully, specific procedures have to be followed. The first is confirmation whether the tasks are done as required. In closing the project, deliverables (Successful launching of the products), as per the requirements of the company, must be presented to the company officials by the project managers for confirmation. This ensures that they contend with the result of the product launch. The second phase is the completion of the procurement closure which provides that all pending payments are made by the project managers.

The third step is gaining formal acceptance whereby the company provides a written document confirming that the tasks were completed as they wanted. The fourth level is the completion of a final performance report. The step involves calculating the cost performance and schedule performance in order to report whether the project was completed behind or ahead of the scheduled time, or whether the plan was on, under or over the budget. The fifth step involves indexing and archiving records in which collected documents are finalized and all documents relevant to the project stored in the company’s files.

The sixth step is updating the lessons acquired. In step, all human participants are required to give the lesson they learned in conducting respective tasks such as product awareness campaign and cost evaluation. The final step involves releasing the resources involved in the completion of tasks. The process is systematical whereby, first, the assignment of the funds to specific activities is closed, followed by a collection of the lessons report and then finally the funds are released.


Ballesteros-Pérez, P., 2017. M-PERT: Manual Project-Duration Estimation Technique for Teaching Scheduling Basics. Journal of Construction Engineering and Management, 143(9), p.04017063.

Burke, R., 2013. Project management: planning and control techniques. New Jersey, USA.

Chen, H.L., Chen, W.T. and Lin, Y.L., 2016. Earned value project management: Improving the predictive power of planned value. International Journal of Project Management, 34(1), pp.22-29.

Fleming, Q.W. and Koppelman, J.M., 2016, December. Earned value project management. Project Management Institute.

Kerzner, H., 2013. Project management: a systems approach to planning, scheduling, and controlling. John Wiley & Sons.

Larson, E.W. and Gray, C., 2013. Project Management: The Managerial Process with MS Project. McGraw-Hill.

Menesi, W. and Hegazy, T., 2014. Multimode resource-constrained scheduling and leveling for practical-size projects. Journal of management in engineering, 31(6), p.04014092.

Nahmias, S., 2013. Gantt Charts. Encyclopedia of Operations Research and Management Science, pp.631-633.

Rivard, S. and Aubert, B.A., 2015. Information technology outsourcing. Routledge.

Snyder, C.S., 2014. A Guide to the Project Management Body of Knowledge: PMBOK (®) Guide. Project Management Institute.

Young, T.L., 2013. Successful project management (Vol. 52). Kogan Page Publishers.

May 10, 2023

Education Business Life

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Project Company Investment

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