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Project Execution and Delivery

Once the organization approves the project plan, typically at a phase gate review, project execution and delivery begins. During this phase, IT project leaders build their teams, beginning the process of interacting with them and directing team activities. Project leaders are responsible for organizing and leading a project kickoff meeting, during which they set the expectations and tone of the project, providing detailed information concerning the scope, schedule, quality requirements, budget, risks, and other Project Management Plan elements. This important meeting provides an opportunity for team members and stakeholders to ask questions and receive clarification concerning project requirements, stakeholder expectations, and roles and responsibilities. As team members progress in project execution, project leaders provide oversight and decision support, coordinate with team members and the organizational governance body, and take actions to ensure that the project performs in a manner that will produce the required deliverables on time, within budget, at acceptable quality levels, and in compliance with organizational standards and delivery processes. Project leaders and their team members provide stakeholders with the agreed-upon project performance reports, ensure that they are informed on the status of the project, and monitor compliance with established standards and performance metrics (Heldman and Heldman, 2010).

Change Control and Communications

Project leaders understand that change is inevitable on a project. They are responsible for implementing processes to keep changes to scope, schedule, costs, and quality under control in order to ensure that the project produces the deliverables that the stakeholders expect and require. The Change Control and Communications domain has an iterative relationship with the Project Execution and Delivery domain described above. This domain includes the performance of qualitative and quantitative risk analysis, quality control activities, and the management of change requests for work performed during execution and delivery. The project team communicates with stakeholders in accordance with the communications plan, which includes meetings, reports, presentations, and briefings that are provided to the specified stakeholders in the expected format at the expected time (Heldman and Heldman, 2010).

Project Closure

At the end of the Project Execution and Delivery and Change Control and Communications phases, the stakeholders requiring the project deliverables—which may be internal customers or external clients or organizations—decide if the project’s outputs are acceptable. After project acceptance, the IT project leader is responsible for closing the project. The IT project leader documents the final status of the project and performs a postproject review. If the project is canceled without acceptance, the IT project leader performs a post-mortem review to analyze and document the cause. Whether the project completed successfully or was cancelled prior to completion, the IT project leader is responsible for coordinating lessons learned sessions and documenting lessons learned to enable the organization to capture knowledge gained through the project experience and to facilitate continuous process improvement. The IT project leader leads the process to close contracts associated with the project and to release personnel, facilities, funding, and material resources to the organization. This release may include transitioning resources and information to operational groups or to other projects or programs. The project leader performs a final performance appraisal of personnel resources and produces a final project closure report (Heldman and Heldman, 2010).

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