Project Management Plan

Posted on May 8, 2009 by


The Project Management Plan describes how a certain project is to be executed, monitored and controlled, and closed. Its contents, length, and level of detail will vary across different projects. It is the only output of the fourth edition PMBOK®’s Develop Project Management Plan process. Because it serves as a roadmap for the project, the writing of the Project Management Plan should begin very early in the project. When writing begins, the Project Charter may be the only previous document to use as a reference. However, the Project Management Plan is not completely written before the project begins. On the contrary, it is continuously updated and elaborated upon throughout the project. Also, the Project Management Plan is not a single plan—it is a collection of subsidiary plans and baselines. Examples of these subsidiary plans are: Scope Management Plan, Requirements Management Plan, Schedule Management Plan, Cost Management Plan, and Risk Management Plan. Baselines could include Schedule, Cost, and Performance baselines. These subsidiary plans and baselines are outputs from separate processes that are then integrated into the Project Management Plan. The level of detail of these subsidiary plans, and whether or not they are even included, will vary from project to project. A long-term project with a large team will necessitate a far more detailed Project Management Plan than will a smaller project. The PMBOK’s Develop Project Management Plan Data Flow Diagram on page 79 shows how this process directly interacts with 32 other processes that provide additions to the Project Management Plan and/or are directly guided by it. This emphasizes that the Project Management Plan is central to a well-managed project. Also see Develop Project Management Plan Process (posted February 23, 2009).