Planning Processes


Project Planning is most important in project management, because the work you are about to complete has likely never been done before. When we talk about project planning process, there are two different kinds of planning processes: core processes and supporting processes.


Core processes follow a stringent pattern of completion; however, supporting or facilitating processes are used in no particular order. Facilitating processes are used when needed and they do not typically follow a particular flow from start to finish.

Below are some examples of Core Processes:

1. Scope planning: To create a document that will guide project decisions.

2. Scope definition: To breakdown the project deliverables into manageable elements. The sum of the smaller elements equate to the project scope.

3. Activity definition: To define the required activities, and only the required activities, to complete the project scope.


4. Resource planning: To ascertain the required resources to achieve the defined activities to complete the project work. Resources include people, equipment, and materials.


5. Activity sequencing: To determine the best sequence of planned activities within the project work.


6. Activity duration estimating: To determine the estimated required work units to successfully complete the defined activities.


7. Cost estimating: To determine an estimated amount of monies to complete the project work using the defined facilities, services, and goods.


8. Risk management planning: To determine the risks within the project and how to react to the identified risks.


9. Schedule development: To determine the project schedule based on the sequence of activities, the required resources, and the required monies. The schedule development process reveals an estimated reflection of when all of the required work can be completed with the given resources.


10. Cost budgeting: To determine the estimated cost of the activities to complete the project work.


11. Project plan development: Creating a coherent compilation of the other planning processes to guide the project execution.


Examples of Supporting Processes:


1. Quality planning: To determine the quality assurance standards used by the organization. The quality assurance standards that are relevant to the project must be planned into the project.


2. Communications planning: To determine who needs what, when they need it, and in what modality (paper, electronic, and so on) it may be needed.


3. Organizational planning: To determine the project roles and responsibility. This also determines the reporting structure between the project manager, the project team, and management.


4. Staff acquisition: To acquire the needed people to complete the determined project work.


5. Risk identification: To identify the risks, rewards, and penalties associated with the project.


6. Qualitative risk analysis: To prioritize the impact of the risks on the project (typically in a high, medium, and low ranking).


7. Quantitative risk analysis: To measure and consider the probability and associated impact of the risks on the project.


8. Risk response planning: To avoid, eliminate, reduce, or create a planned reaction to the identified risks within the project.


9. Procurement planning: To determine what goods and services must be procured and when the goods and services will need to be procured in the project life cycle.


10. Solicitation planning: To determine the possible vendors to provide the goods and services for the project.


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