Complex long-term projects usually involve different variations parts that need to eventually be aligned.
If this process involves the work of different teams or departments everything just becomes a whole lot more complicated.
Project integration management is a process that allows such a complex process to align and create the harmony needed to deliver a successful project outcome.
But what is project integration management? How does it benefit you? And how do you even go about implementing it into your next project?
Here is your guide on everything you need to know about implementing project integration management.
What is Project Integration Management?
Integrated Project Management is the process of coordinating all the moving parts and elements of a project throughout the project lifecycle.
Integrated project management has been identified by PMBOK (Project Management Book of Knowledge) as one of ten key knowledge areas.
This process considers how different elements of your project interconnect as well as how other departments in your organization relate to the project. It is the process of ensuring that a project is not managed in isolation.
The coordination of elements includes coordinating stakeholders, resources, tasks, etc.
The Importance of Project Integration Management
Integrated project management is a critical success factor in project success and for project managers.
This process ensures stability throughout the project in all its different areas. This includes:
- Project Scope
- Project Schedule
- Project Cost
- Potential Risk Management
Implementing integrated project management allows you and your team to implement a more successful project strategy right from the start of any project.
What are the Benefits of Project Integration Management?
We have highlighted how implementing integrated project management is an important part of achieving a successful project delivery. However, here are some other benefits you can gain from implementing integrated project management.
There are many benefits to be gained from implementing integrated project management, here are the top three things that are in it for you:
Ability to Save Valuable Time
With integrated project management, you are making the effort to share resources as well as proactively dealing with overlapping schedules.
Being proactive in this approach and making the most out of the resources available allows you and your team to work as efficiently as possible.
This also ensures that there are not resources that are overburdened nor resources that do not have work therefore you drastically reduce the amount of idle time.
The way that integrated project management works provides a means for your project to get direction as well as improves coordination between your teams.
Dividing roles and responsibilities of individuals and teams, creating a list of all processes and project tasks, monitoring project performance, and other elements of integrated project management all add to giving the project a defined purpose and improving coordination amongst your organization.
For integrated project management to work efficiently, the relevant individuals who are part of the project need to maintain consistent communication.
This includes the project manager, the team working on the project, and even any relevant stakeholders or clients.
This continuous communication ensures that everyone is up to date on the progress of the project and ensures that expectations are properly managed. In turn, this allows for a sense of accountability to be created amongst the parties involved and improves productivity.
How to Implement Project Integration Management?
Now that you know what integrated project management is, why it’s important, and what’s in it for you if you were to implement integrated project management how do you even go about implementing it into your next project?
Here is a guide on the steps to implementing integrated project management in your next project:
Step 1: Develop a Project Charter
A project charter is one of the first documents you create and one of the first steps in project integration.
A project charter is a formal document that describes the project in its entirety, yet is typically brief and to the point.
The document is used throughout the life of the project and includes information such as why the project is being undertaken, what the objectives of the project are, who the stakeholders are, what potential risks are as well as benefits are to be gained, and a brief overview of the project budget.
To read more about creating a project charter check out this blog post on how to write an effective project charter.
The project charter is the first step and easiest way to get everyone involved on the same page from the start. Therefore, this is a great step to help integrate all relevant individuals into what the project is going to include.
Step 2: Developing a Project Management Plan
A well-curated project management plan provides all the different departments and individuals working on the project to know what to expect, what deadlines to follow, and how to work together and coordinate with each other.
The project management plan defines the method the team will adopt thus allowing for everyone to be on the same page and integrate efficiently.
For more information on creating an effective project management plan, check out this guide.
Step 3: Manage Project Execution and Project Work Processes
Once the documents are in place it is time to execute the plan. The Project managers of the project should integrate all the assigned tasks of individual team members into the project’s defined objectives.
Ensure that every department and team working on the project are equipped with the tools and resources to implement the project plan to allow for effective project integration and alignment.
Keep track of the project processes along with meetings such as status meetings and stakeholder meetings, and other project elements to ensure integration with one another for successful project delivery.
Step 4: Monitoring Project Progress and Work
It is important to keep everything in check and alignment with the project charter throughout the project.
This will ensure that the project stays on track and can be a success.
Consider ensuring the scope of the project is in check as well as maintaining the decided project schedule, the quality of work, and stakeholder engagement.
This step also involves considering how everyone is working together and whether the different departments involved in your project are coordinating and are unified as you wanted.
Step 5: Perform Integrated Change Control
Unexpected changes or unknowns are part and parcel of any project whether it be big or small and no matter how much planning has been done.
And while these are normal and common occurrences, certain changes have the potential to derail an entire project.
Therefore, it is important to give such changes the importance and attention they deserve. You want to apply a system or process in your integration management strategy to address such changes.
You want an integrated change control process. This way even with changes you can ensure that your processes are still unified and that everyone is still on the same page and working towards the same end goal.
Step 6: Project Close
Once you reach your project close it is time to review how the project was delivered.
You want to consider where you and your team consider the project succeeded as well as what issues were faced so you can learn from them for your next project.
Unified feedback can help with improving your project integration management processes for your next project.
Using nTask for Project Integration Management
As is true with any process, or element in a project, implementing integrated project management can be difficult but sticking to the right kind of tools can help to make a huge difference…
This is where nTask comes into play. With its range of complex yet easy-to-use features this project management tool can simplify all elements of your project management including integrated project management.
nTask offers task management features and planning tools that you can use to layout all the project tasks and assign them to team members. This can then be viewed on the interactive Gantt chart or Kanban board to allow the organization to be in line and work in harmony.
The Gantt charts and Kanban boards allow team members, project managers, and other stakeholders to gain transparency allowing for a more efficient way of working for the whole organization.
Other features include meeting management tools, risk, and issue management features, timesheets modules, communication, and collaboration tools, and much more.
Check out all the features nTask has to offer and how you can use them to help implement integrated project management into your next project on nTask’s product feature page or book a demo with one of our representatives.