Understand the Project Cycle Management & Its Phases Introduction

2023-02-15 17:54:37

Today's global business climate necessitates companies adopt effective strategies and programs for superior results. To remain competitive, businesses must take a systematic approach to their daily operations. Today's businesses use project management, or PM, to roll out any new initiatives in this direction.

Accomplishing a project's goals is a complex task. Much work must be done before a project reaches its final stage, as it requires a sequence of functions to satisfy stakeholder and client requirements.

A thorough understanding of the Project life cycle, the phases of a project, and the process groups is crucial no matter what project you're working on. Your ongoing projects will benefit from increased organization and viability from inception to realization. Knowledgewoods will help you to have a better understanding of the Project Management Cycles and their phases.

What is the Project Management Life Cycle?

The Project Management life cycle (Process Group) is a five-stage structure cycle designed to help project managers bring their initiatives to a productive conclusion.

A project manager's critical competency is a solid grounding in the processes involved in managing a project from start to finish. Familiarising yourself with the five phases of project management will help you organize your tasks and ensure that the projects run smoothly.

The project manager can manage while keeping track of all that has to be done when a project is broken down into discrete stages. Each cycle set serves a specific purpose, exhibits its unique traits, and culminates in a product deliverable that is evaluated as part of the Project Management process.

What is the Purpose of Project Cycle Management?

Management of the project life cycle ensures that goals set out by the organization launching the project are met. Additionally, it aids projects in maintaining alignment with the agreed-upon strategy and the requirements of stakeholders and customers.

Management of the project life cycle also guarantees the project's viability. By determining whether or not a project is feasible and beneficial before it is implemented and by keeping track of whether or not the project's benefits are -

Long-lasting, cycle management helps to ensure that scarce resources are well-spent. 

Stakeholder involvement is crucial for the success of any project cycle management initiative. 

Using a logical framework strategy and other ancillary tools is also required.

Quality assessment criteria and documentation are also incorporated at each project stage.

Characteristics of a Project Life Cycle

The following are typical features of the general life cycle structure:

  • Costs and workforce are lowest at the outset and highest when the work is completed. As work slows down and eventually stops, it drops rapidly once more.
  • Not all projects follow the average cost and staffing curve. Investing heavily in securing vital resources early in their existence is expensive.
  • At the outset of every endeavor, there is always a greater degree of danger and apprehension. As decisions are made, and deliverables are approved, these factors decrease throughout a project's life cycle.
  • At the outset of a project, it is easier to make changes that won't significantly raise costs; as the project progresses, this flexibility decreases. As the end of a project approaches, it becomes increasingly expensive to make changes and fix mistakes.

 In some form or another, these characteristics can be found in virtually every Phase of a project's life cycle. In contrast to predictive life cycles, adaptive life cycles aim to keep stakeholder influence high and change towards low costs.

What are the 5 Phases of the Project Life Cycle?

The five Phases are the backbone of the project management cycle. Each Phase guarantees a successful outcome that culminates in a fully realized project. This approach is a clean and orderly means of keeping on schedule while being prepared for any obstacles.

The phases of the project cycle are:

a. Initiation

b. Planning and design

c. Execution

d. Monitoring and controlling

e. Closure 

1. Project Initiation Phase:

 The main objectives of the Initial Phase of the project life cycle are to start a project with your team and the client and to secure their commitment to do so. To define the project's scope, cost, and resources, you compile all relevant data in a logical, organized fashion. In the initiation phase, you determine what the project needs to do and what it needs to accomplish based on the brief. This typically involves figuring out who needs to be involved in the project and ensuring they all have the same understanding of the project's goals and the business case (the issue being addressed). The viability of delivering the business case is a consideration during the project initiation phase. To succeed as a project manager, you'll need to do your homework and figure out the project's end goal before developing a strategy.

2. Project Planning Phase:

This Phase of the project's life cycle is crucial. Assuming you've been approved to move forward with the project's initiation, the next step is to start making plans. All project tasks are laid out, and a strategy for completing them is developed during the planning phase. Here, you'll answer these questions and plan out how you'll carry out the project:

a. So, what are our precise plans?

b. What strategy will we employ?

c. What's the timeframe for this?

d. How will we know whether we've succeeded in our mission is the query?

e. Which needs to be answered?

To move forward with the project, you and your team must establish a strategy for completing the project. The three criteria of "Possible," "Passionate," and "Pervasive" help assess the worth of such objectives. Though you may be familiar with setting CLEAR goals, I find this "3 Ps" perspective particularly useful. These guidelines can help you set CLEAR (Collaborative, Limited, Emotional, Appreciable, and Refineable) objectives.

Project plan is produced at the end of the planning phase, detailing the project's activities, tasks, dependencies, timelines, and budget. Preparing for Resources, quality, risk, acceptance criteria, communication, and procurement is also good idea.

3. Project Execution Phase:

You put your carefully crafted plan into action in this project life cycle phase. You must bring your resources on board, brief them, establish rules, and introduce them to one another. Then, everyone pitches in to carry out the assigned tasks. To move from a project's planning and documentation stages to the actual implementation phase, you must have the approval of higher-ups as the project manager.

You're now in charge of steering the team in the direction of completion of the project. Briefings, meetings, and reviews will consume your time, but they're necessary for keeping the project on track as it progresses through the project life cycle.

4. Project Monitoring & Controlling Phase:

This is a particularly challenging part of the project management process. It entails keeping track of progress, filing reports, and exercising control over the project. This involves monitoring the project's progress to make sure it's on track and taking corrective action as needed to get it back on track if it's not. Project managers are responsible for keeping tabs on projects at all stages of their life cycles.

First, you'll need to ensure you're keeping track of the information you need to track progress against the original plan effectively.

Second, it entails analyzing the collected information regarding how healthy tasks were completed, how much money was spent, and how much time was allotted. You can tell if you're on track to meet your deadline, budget, and quality goals, as well as your other success indicators, by comparing actual results to your plan. And when things aren't going as planned (which they rarely do), it's about figuring out how to make adjustments so that the project can still meet the client's expectations regarding cost, schedule, and quality.

5. Project Closure Phase:

When you reach this project life cycle stage, your project manager's work is done. Yet we still have work to do on this project.

Before everyone forgets, it's essential to have a post-project review meeting or post-mortem to discuss the positives and negatives of the project and the team, what went well and what didn't, and how to fix the problems for the future. One of the best parts of managing a project is the completion celebration, where everyone involved can be thanked for their efforts and celebrated for a job well done.


Becoming proficient in all phases of the project management lifecycle will continue to unfold throughout your professional life. Successfully navigating your first few months as a project manager can depend on your familiarity with the process's standard features, such as the tools, steps, and terminology utilized in the role. To hone your project management skills, consider taking a course at KNOWLEDGEWOODS and learn about the Project Life Cycle Inside Out with Relevant, Practical, Expert-Led Training.