What Is a Project?
What do the following headlines have in common?
Millions watch Olympic Opening Ceremony
Citywide WiFi system set to go live
Hospitals respond to new Health Care Reforms
Apple's new iPhone hits the market
City receives stimulus funds to expand light rail system All of these events represent projects.
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The Project Management Institute provides the following definition of a project: A project is a temporary endeavor undertaken to create a unique product, service, or result. Like most organizational effort, the major goal of a project is to satisfy a customer's need. Beyond this fundamental similarity, the characteristics of a project help differentiate it from other endeavors of the organization. The major characteristics of a project are as follows: Page 7
1 . � An established objective.
2 . � A defined life span with a beginning and an end. three or more. � Generally, the involvement of several departments and professionals. 5. � Commonly, doing something that has never been done before. your five. � Specific time, cost, and performance requirements. First, projects have a defined objective—whether it is constructing a 12story apartment complex by January 1 or releasing version 2. 0 of a specific software package as quickly as possible. This singular purpose is often lacking in daily organizational life in which workers perform repetitive operations each day.
Second, because there is a specified objective, projects have a defined endpoint, which is contrary to the ongoing duties and responsibilities of traditional jobs. In many cases, individuals move from one project to the next as opposed to staying in one job. After helping to install a security system, an IT engineer may be assigned to develop a database for a different client....
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