Integral Logistics Management — Operations Management and Supply Chain Management Within and Across Companies

19.2.1 Goals and Constraints of a Project

Intended learning outcomes: Produce an overview on project performance and project deliverables. Differentiate between external constraints and internal constraints in project management.



Every project has certain goals and objectives; the project performs these.

Project performance comprises achievement of the project objectives in the areas of quality, cost, delivery, and flexibility.[note 1901]

The following describes target areas both generally and taking the example of developing and preparing a machine for marketing:

  • In the target area of quality, the goals include functional objec­tives, such as the use of product and process technologies, or the way that the organization functions. Examples: exact specifica­tions of the functions of the machine, decisions regarding the principles of construction and production.
  • In the target area of delivery, the goals include, for example, realization by the planned date to meet the “time to market.”
  • In the target area of cost, the goals are commercial, such as meeting the cost budget, or realization of expected financial benefit. Example: determining cost per unit and the sales price of the machine, setting the development budget.

The goals themselves are expressed as what are called deliverables.

A deliverable is a tangible result created by the work of a project.

Deliverables are, for example, a product prototype, a software package introduced to the market, or a new organization of an area in the company. But a deliverable can also be a study, guidelines, or documents.

Generally, projects have to be performed and delivered under certain constraints.

  • External constraints are constraints in the project environment over which one can have little or no influence. In the case of system development, these are mainly the sur­rounding systems. External constraints of business projects can be legal / regulatory but also political, sociological, environmental, or economic. External constraints are also the scarcity of goods or customers’ quality requirements.
  • Internal constraints are issues in the world of the project that can be influenced and changed — sometimes easily. Internal constraints can be aspects of business and business management but also qualitative abilities and quantitative availability of persons involved in the project. Internal constraints are also the complexity of the project and the technologies implemented, or the quality and delivery reliability of procured goods.

Once project goals and deliverables have been defined and approved, in principle they may not be changed, even if the constraints change. This is one of the main tasks of project management.




Course section 19.2: Subsections and their intended learning outcomes

  • 19.2 Project Management

    Intended learning outcomes: Present goals and constraints of a project. Describe project phase, project life cycle, and work breakdown structure. Explain scheduling and effort planning as well as organization of a project. Differentiate between cost, benefits, profitability, and risk of a project.

  • 19.2.1 Goals and Constraints of a Project

    Intended learning outcomes: Produce an overview on project performance and project deliverables. Differentiate between external constraints and internal constraints in project management.

  • 19.2.2 Project Phase, Project Life Cycle, and Work Breakdown Structure

    Intended learning outcomes: Produce an overview on the project phases in a generic project life cycle. Describe the increasing degree of detail of tasks and work packages in a work breakdown structure. Present an excerpt from a work breakdown structure for the preliminary study for a building conversion.

  • 19.2.3 Project Scheduling and Project Effort Planning

    Intended learning outcomes: Present in detail the schematic display of project effort per organizational unit. Explain an excerpt of the Gantt chart for the project “preliminary study for building conversion”.

  • 19.2.4 Project Organization

    Intended learning outcomes: Differentiate between project coordination in a functional, or line, organization and project management in a project-based organization. Describe project management in a strong matrix organization.

  • 19.2.5 Project Cost, Project Benefits, Project Profitability, and Project Risk

    Intended learning outcomes: Produce an overview on the total cost of ownership of a project. Explain the Matrix for estimating the project benefit of an investment in a software system as well as the graphic representation in overlay of nine profitability calculations, for cumulative benefits with degrees of realization 1 to 9. Identify NPV, the net present value technique. Present the issue of project risk management.