How to Effectively Manage Projects: The 5 Phases of Project Management Using SAP Business One

Richard Duffy
Richard Duffy in SAP Business One 9.3, Project Management June 25, 2018

Regardless of the industry that a business serves, at one point or another, it becomes necessary to act on strategic departmental or company-wide development goals. Being able to execute these plans efficiently requires active project management and a well-constructed roadmap for success. Understanding the five phases of project management, and how to leverage SAP Business One during each phase, can help deliver successful projects. 

The 5 Phases

While every company project differs in size and complexity from one business to another, there is a universal standard for project management planning and execution that's made up of five critical phases for successful deployment. To maintain each of these phases properly, project management teams must have the tools and services they need to meet their goals, and this is where the power of SAP Business One comes into action.

Below we'll discuss each phase in the project management lifecycle and how teams can utilize SAP Business One to execute their projects efficiently. Remember that the default stages in SAP Business One follow this naming convention out of the box but you can rename the stages and add additional stages to map to your own variations on the structure.

Phase 1: Initiation

Shown in SAP Business One as Conception/Initiation, this stage is executed before a project is even constructed. Understanding if the undertaking has value and feasibility is the first phase of its management lifecycle. Evaluating the lead time to execute along with available resources to be allocated will help identify if the project is worth pursuing.

Phase 2: Planning

Once the decision has been made to move forward with a project, Phase 2 involves writing a well-formatted project plan and creating a roadmap for success. This stage is listed in SAP Business One as Definition/Planning and the purpose of this phase is to build a detailed understanding of project goals and how they can be achieved. This will give direction to the team members involved while ensuring quality output and mitigating financial risk.

Phase 3: Execution

While it's common to hastily jump to the action stage of their projects, execution is intentionally the third phase in project development, and should only be approached once proper initiation and planning have been completed. Efficient execution is about delivering all of the goals laid out in the planning phase and should strictly follow the budgeting parameters and timelines specified. It is here, of course, where SAP Business One 's ERP capabilities kick in.

Phase 4: Monitoring and Control

Once the execution phase of a project is underway, consistently monitoring its progress and carefully controlling its direction is critical. The team leaders need to stay focused on timely delivery and return on investment. Adjustments should be made to the format of a project if necessary, ensuring it stays in alignment with company goals

Phase 5: Closure

As the finish line for project management teams arrives, the final product is delivered to internal or external parties. This phase is also when documentation of the project from start to finish should be completed. Documentation helps the organization learn from any successes or failures that developed during the process.

Managing Projects Through SAP Business One

Developing a roadmap for success is vital in project management, and utilizing the right tools and services to execute the project correctly is equally important. Thankfully, SAP Business One has several project management capabilities that guide teams through each phase of the project management lifecycle.

SAP Business One is designed to navigate each stage of a project through the Project Management module. When enabling this feature, teams can initiate new projects and establish their parameters around existing partnerships or internal project development.

Each phase of the project management lifecycle can be expanded in great detail through the creation of subprojects and use of SAP Business One's task management and priority setting features. And since the entire project is managed through the solution, all pertinent business information, including project documentation, sales quotations, operating costs, and budgets, is easily accessible in one place. 

Following all five phases of the project management lifecycle is vital to properly and efficiently execute your business development strategies from start to finish. By utilizing SAP Business One's Project Management module, you can ensure that your team manages each project management stage effectively while maximizing productivity and overall return on investment.

SAP Business One Project Management Fundamentals

As part of our 15-Minute Fundamentals video series, we took a deeper look at the basics SAP Business One Project Management during our Project Accounting focus in April. 

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