Project Management Tools and Reflection

Subject: Technology
Type: Informative Essay
Pages: 7
Word count: 1823
Topics: Data Analysis, Investment, Management

Project management triangle

Project management triangle also referred to as triple constraint is a model of constraints of project management. Project managers use project management triangle to scrutinize or get an understanding of the setbacks that might occur when implementing and carrying out a project.  Every project, in spite of its size, will have to posses several constraints. The project management triangle is utilized to show that the success of a project is gauged by the capability of the project team to properly run a project, so that the anticipated outcomes are generated whilst managing cost and time (Newell & Grashina, 2014).

Like any activity undertaken by humans, a project must be undertaken and delivered and particular constraints. These constraints entail scope, cost and time. These three constraints are also known as project management triangle, whereby every side signifies a constraint.  In project management, the project manager and project team are continually juggling cost, quality and time. When one variable is altered, it will have an impact on the other two variables. The success of a project is gauged by the ability of the project team to manage the project so that the anticipated outcomes are generated whist managing cost and time (Newell & Grashina, 2014).

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Time / schedule

According to Dobson (2012) this is the real duration needed to complete a project. Naturally, the quantity of time needed to generate the deliverable is directly connected to the quantity of requirements that are a portion of the end outcome or scope together with the quantity of the resources allotted to a project. The activities of a project can take longer or shorter amount of time for completion. Completion of project tasks is dependent on several factors like the number of individuals who work on the project and their skills and experience. Time is a vital factor that cannot be controlled. However, failure of the project team to meet deadlines can result to undesirable effects (Dobson, 2012).


According to Taylor (2013), for analytical   aims, the time needed to generate a deliverable is approximated through utilization of the work breakdown structure. The work effort for every task is approximated and these estimates incorporated into the final deliverable approximate. Additionally, tasks are prioritized, with dependencies amid tasks being identified and the resulting information is documented in the project schedule. Taylor (2013) argues that that a project schedule is a tool used in communicating the work that needs to be carried out, the resources that will carry out the work as well as the timeframes within which the work required to be performed. A project schedule is supposed to have a reflection of all the work connected with timely delivering project. With no complete and full schedule, a project manager cannot have the capability of estimating the complete effort, in regard to resources and time, essential to deliver a project. A schedule is an important tool that requires be monitoring and updating. 

A schedule’s building blocks begin with a work breakdown structure. A work breakdown structure hierarchically reflects all the work within a project in regard to deliverables. So as to generate deliverables, work should be performed. A work breakdown structure is a highly valuable tools used by project managers in breaking down projects into manageable sections usually referred to as work projects. It usually ties the whole project together (Taylor, 2013). Creation of a work breakdown structure assists project managers to be specific as well as comprehensive whilst managing the project and also assists in keen observation of details whilst also putting the big picture into consideration. Sometimes, it is usual for project manager to be overpowered by all project details since he is attempting to comprehend the work being carried out be several individuals over a particular duration. The most useful scheme is to break down a project into sections and logically organize these pieces utilizing the work breakdown structure (Lewis, 2011). 

Cost/ budget

This is the approximation of the quantity of money that will be needed for completion of a project.  Cost per se includes several things such as resources, risk estimates, bills of materials   and cost of labor. Every aspect of a project having a monetary element is made a portion of the entire cost structure. Project managers   are required to account for resources that a project requires. When the resources allocated are not enough, a project will suffer, and when resources are allocated in excess, there will be inflation of costs. It is the duty of a project manager to ensure that workers are available when they are requires working on a project (Dobson, 2012).


To develop an estimation of a project cost relies on numerous variables like labor rates, work packages resources and mitigating influencing factors that lead to cost variances. Tools utilized are cost contingency, cost escalation, indirect costs and risk management. However, apart from this primary accounting model to variable and fixed costs, an economic cost that should be regarded entails worker’s productivity and skill which is compute utilizing project cost approximate tools.  Project management cost approximating tools include analogous estimating   whereby the cost of an identical project is used to establish the cost of the present project (Project Management Institute, 2008).

According to Project Management Institute (2008) bottom up estimating entails use of lowest level of the work package detail, and then a summary of the cost connected with it. It is then rolled up to a higher aimed level and the whole cost of a project is calculated. Parametric estimating measures the statistical link amid historical data and other flow or variable. Vendor bid analysis entails calculating the average of the numerous bids offered by project vendors.  Cost of quality analysis entails estimation of the price of the highest quality for every activity while reserve analysis entails aggregation of the cost of every activity on network path. Reserve or contingency is then added to the resulting outcome of the analysis through a factor that is established by the project manager. Project management software might be utilized in calculation of cost variances for the project (Project Management Institute, 2008). 

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A project scope is all the work that must be performed to complete a project along with the processes that must be followed so as to complete this work. They are the functional components that upon completion, leads to end deliverable for a project.  Scope is concerned with the result of the undertaken project and this comprises of a listing of deliverables which must be addresses by project team. During a project scope, the project team must prioritize and describe project activities, work out a schedule and budget, and establish resources that are required (Dobson, 2012). 


The most commonly project management tool for managing scope is the program evaluation review technique (PERT). Schimmoller, (2010) notes that PERT is a mapping and planning tool utilized in defining and regulating all tasks essential for completion of a project. PERT chart shows the whole project with all scheduled tasks displayed in a sequence. These displayed tasks illustrate parallel tasks and tasks which can be concurrently performed.  A graphic representation known as project network is utilized to graphically portray the interrelationships of components of a project and demonstrate the order of performing activities.

PERT planning entails identification of specific milestones and activities, determination of accurate sequence of activities, construction of a network diagram, estimation of time needed for every activity and determination of critical path. Critical path is established through adding times for tasks in every sequence and establishing the project’s longest path. It establishes the whole calendar time needed for a project.  The PERT chart is updated as a project progresses and the approximated time may be replaced with real times (Schimmoller, 2010).

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Part 2

Project risk management

Within a project environment, there is usually a chance or risk that undesirable conditions will occur, which can make a project to completely fail or fail to meet its intended objectives such as quality, time and cost. The goal of risk management is to raise the effect and possibility of positive risks and minimize them for adverse risks. The project manager must consider the diverse activities tasks and work that produce project deliverables and consider any risk that could make the actual result to differ from the anticipated outcome

Risk identification

Risk identification entails determining the risks that have the likelihood of affecting a project and document their features. There are tools used when identifying project risks. The scenario based entails utilization of creative brainstorming ideas to produce negative and positive risks in the scope of a project.  The other tool used in determination of negative and positive risks in a project is the relative experiences strategy, whereby risks are established through relating past experiences and projects and twisting them so that they can fit the scope of a present project (Project Management Institute, 2008). 

Risk quantification

Risk quantification entails qualitative risk analysis which assesses the effect and probability of identified risks and quantitative risk analysis which is a process that numerically analyzes the probability of every risk and its outcome on project goals. Qualitative risk analysis tools include risk probability and impact assessment which investigates the probability that every specific risk will happen and the probable effect on the project such as cost, quality or schedule. Another tool is risk categorization where risks are grouped by their root cause (Barkley, 2012). 

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Quantitative risk analysis can be done through probability distributions where continuous probability distributions are extensively utilized in modeling and simulations and they represent the ambiguity in values like cots of project components and tasks durations. Another quantitative analysis tool is expected monetary value analysis where the average outcome is calculated when the future entails scenarios that might or might not occur. In general opportunities are positive values with risks being negative values (Barkley, 2012). 

Risk response planning

Risk response planning encompasses development of options and determination of actions to enable opportunities to minimize threats to project goals. The project manager brainstorms so as to collect all negative and positive risks. The list of risks isn’t on every probable thing that could occur, but the category of incidents that could occur (Project Management Institute, 2008). The most useful tool are variance and trend analysis whereby performance information is used to compare planned outcomes to the actual results so as to regulate and monitor risk incidents and recognize trends in the execution of a project. Another tool is reserve analysis which compares the quantity of the remaining contingency reserve (cost and time) to the quantity of remaining threats so as to establish the sufficiency of the remaining reserves(Barkley,  2012).

Risk monitoring and control

Risk monitoring and control entails tracking the identified threats, monitoring of residual risks and recognizing new risks whilst ensuring implementation of risk plans and assessing their efficiency in minimizing risk (Lewis, 2011). 

Did you like this sample?
  1. Lewis, J. (2011). Project Planning, Scheduling & Control. New York: McGraw Hill.
  2. Taylor J. (2013). Project Scheduling and Cost Control: Planning, Monitoring and Controlling the Baseline. Florida: J Ross Publishing. 
  3. Dobson, M. (2012). The Triple Constraints in Project Management. New York: Wiley Publisher 
  4. Newell, M., & Grashina, M. (2014). The Project Management Questions and Answer Book.  New York. AMACOM Division of American Management Association. 
  5. Project Management Institute. (2008). A Guide to the Project Management Body of Knowledge: PMBOK Guide. Pennsylvania:  Project Management Institute
  6. Schimmoller, K. (2010). “The Changing Face of Project Management.” Power Engineering, 105, (5): 28-30.
  7.  Barkley, B. (2012). Project Risk Management. New York: McGraw Hill Education.
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