There are various methodologies or principles and processes followed while executing a project. Each project methodology is made with a specific intention in mind. Depending on the type of project you are executing, you can choose any of the various project management methodologies. These methodologies are approaches to carrying out a project. Following these methodologies will help you plan, execute, and monitor projects effectively. This guide lists 10 of the top project management methodologies followed worldwide.
10 methodologies for project management
This is a traditional methodology and is a structured approach to managing projects. As the name suggests, it is like a waterfall that moves from one level to another downwards. Each phase of the project follows the previous phase. It is ideal in construction and manufacturing, and has also been used extensively in software development.
The methodology makes use of Gantt charts for scheduling phases of the project and for project tracking.
Popular in the software industry, the Agile methodology can be used in other sectors too. It is a collaborative way of working that ensures teams are responsive and can carry out production in a fast-paced way. The processes in this methodology and evolving and adaptive. They can be changed at any time and focus on early completion of delivery.
It is a dynamic approach to managing projects, which is why it has become very popular. It is a powerful methodology that is very useful in product development and for executing software projects.
This methodology uses a sprint or short approach to managing projects. While it originated in the software sector, it has been used even in retail, logistics, and event management areas. The focus is on ensuring flexibility in project execution. It is best suited for small teams with less than 10 members with strict role allocation, including a Scrum master.
There are 2-week cycles in this methodology with scrum meetings held daily. There are even larger organisations that have attempted to implement Scrum methodology for their projects.
Critical Path Method or CPM is best applicable for small and medium projects. It would be easy to implement this approach by using project management software. This methodology calls for creating a project model by first breaking down work into activities. Once this is done and dependencies identified, the critical path can be determined.
This refers to the key tasks of the project whose success can make or break the project. This approach can help ensure smooth project implementation by focusing on key activities.
Since its origin is from the Toyota group, it is referred to as the Toyota production system. This method was developed for manufacturing, but can be used in different sectors. Kanban means billboard and refers to displaying tasks on a common board, so everyone knows what needs to be done. It is a system that is helpful in lean production.
Kanban can be effectively implemented by using project management tools that offer a visual interface. Tracking the project becomes easy when this methodology is used.
6. Lean Methodology
The lean methodology focuses on increasing value by reducing waste. While the concept can be credited to Henry Ford, it was Toyota that first implemented the methodology. It is best suited for the manufacturing sector, but can even be used in software. The focus of this methodology is on identifying wasteful activities and eliminating them.
Following this methodology helps in improving delivery times and offering increased value to stakeholders. It ensures the best optimisation of resources and effort so that the customer gains value.
Project Management Body of Knowledge or PMBOK is a book prepared by the Project Management Institute. The book offers comprehensive information about projects from initiation and planning to execution and control. There are 10 knowledge areas and process groups explained that can be used for better project management.
It is applicable for all types and sizes of projects. The methodology offers clarity on the entire project life cycle. Incidentally, the institute offers the PMP certification which is considered the gold standard for project management.
Critical Chain Project Management or CCPM involves the use of methods where the focus is less on ‘scheduling.’ The focus of this methodology is more on effective resource management. It aims at flexibility while ensuring that the resources needed for project execution are properly balanced.
The resources here include people in teams, office space, equipment, etc. It can be used for both small and large projects. Different industries like software and manufacturing have followed this methodology and benefited from it.
9. Six Sigma
This is a methodology pioneered by Motorola and is focused on quality improvement. It makes use of statistical methods to ensure quality in the project execution. The focus is on reducing errors or defects in the processes and the end product. There is even an enhanced version of six sigma known as lean six sigma that brings in elements from the lean methodology.
Its use commenced in the software sector, but is being increasingly followed everywhere. Employees can get certified, so they develop the competency to implement this methodology in projects. The aim is to improve processes in the entire enterprise to sustain quality.
Projects IN Controlled Environments is a structured methodology that was created by the government of the United Kingdom for use of the IT industry. Later on, it was used by other industry sectors too. It is more suited for larger organizations. There are seven principles with defined procedures that need to be followed.
PRINCE2 is an enhanced version of the original standard and is in use since 1996. It is followed in the UK and has been adopted by other countries too. Even the United Nations has adopted this methodology for application in projects.
The information provided above would have helped you get a complete overview of each methodology. You can now decide which of the methodologies suits your project requirements the best and implement it.