Describe the main key phases of a life cycle and the activities and outputs of each The main key phases of a project life cycle are:
- The concept phase is the first phase of the project. The main purpose of this phase is to establish as to whether the project is going to be worthwhile. Some of its key activities are appoint the project sponsor. He in turn will have some influence in appointing the project manager. A steering group will then be formed to represent the user and supplier interests of the project. The main output of the concept stage is the Business Case. There may also be a very early version of the Project Management plan. Gate reviews are held within this phase to ensure the project is feasible from a business case point of view.
- The Definition phase is where the foundations are laid to ensure the best possible chance of the project running smoothly. Major risks the project will need to be identified and mitigated against. Other factors such as configuration,communication and quality management strategies will need to be defined. There may well be some refinement of the business case. The major output of this phase will be the project management plan. This will include estimates,schedules and project budgets. As per the concept stage, gate reviews will beheld to ensure the project is feasible.
- The Development phase is where the actual works done to produce the projects products. This phase is usually broken up into clearly defined stages of which will be separated by stage reviews. These reviews are held to ensure that the project is performing as expected and acts a go/no go decision point as to whether to proceed to the next stage. As an example stage 1 may be request to tender and choose supplier, stage 2 could reproduce the design, stage 3 could be build the products. Main outputs from this phase are the deliverables themselves.
- The handover and closure stage is where we handover the products to the customer and ensure the project is closed in an efficient manner. Handover will include seeking approval from the customer regarding the products delivered and ensuring that any training to operate the product sis provided. Closure, if premature may include securing any products delivered to ensure they can be used elsewhere. It may also include ensuring security of the site if it is to be abandoned. Planned closure may well include ‘commissioning’of the product and ensuring the customer is ready to stand on their own two feet so to speak. Activities such as appraising staff, ensuring non human resources are disposed of and performing a post project review will take place. This will include making sure all lessons that have been learned reincorporated into a report and archived for future use on other projects. The project will also be reviewed against the initial objectives and can then be assessed as to how it has performed. Main outputs are the end project review and the lessons report.