Development Cooperation Handbook/Designing and Executing Projects/Project Execution and Control

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Project execution


Project execution (or implementation) is the phase in which the plan designed in the prior phases of the project life are put into action. The purpose of project execution is to deliver the project expected results (deliverable and other direct outputs). Typically, this is the longest phase of the project management lifecycle, where most resources are applied.

During the project execution the execution team utilizes all the schedules , procedures and templates that were prepared and anticipated during prior phases. Unanticipated events and situations will inevitably be encountered, and the Project Manager and Project Team will have to deal with them as they come up.

In the standard division of project management discipline this phase is called "Project Execution and Control"; the term "control" is included here because execution is not a blind implementation of what was written in advance but a watchful process where doing things goes along with understanding what is being done, and re-doing it or doing it differently when the action does not fully correspond to what was intended. This "control" is an integral part of project management and is a necessary task of the project manager. As such it is different for project evaluation as generally conceived in aid programmes, where evaluation is usually performed by a team different from the project execution team ( e.g. the programme manager, the quality support officer, etc.), so as to independently verify the quality and the efficacy of the work done.

When the whole team is close-knit control, monitoring and evaluation move hand in hand supporting and giving added value to each other. A possible way of differentiating project control by project evaluation is to say that while "control" is done by the project manager (that include monitoring of subordinates and self evaluation) evaluation is generally done directly or through a group by the line manager of the project manager and is an activity occurring in the "shared field" between project and programme management.


The key elements of project execution is the ability of working effectively in the team and the ability of remaining faithful to project scope while facing unpredicted events and difficulties.

Subsections of this chapter[edit]

The main elements of project execution are:

  • Conduct Project Execution Kick-off event, where the Project Manager conducts a meeting to formally begin the Project Execution and Control phase, orient new Project Team members, and review the documentation and current status of the project.
  • Manage Project Execution, where the Project Manager must manage every aspect of the Project Plan to ensure that all the work of the project is being performed correctly and on time.
  • Manage CSSQ (Cost, Scope, Schedule, and Quality), where the Project Manager must manage changes to the Project Scope and Project Schedule, implement Quality Assurance and Quality Control processes, control and manage costs as established in the Project Budget.
  • Monitor and Control Risks, where the project develops and applies new response and resolution strategies to unexpected eventualities.
  • Gain Project Acceptance where the project manager acknowledge that all outputs delivered have been tested, accepted and approved, and that the products/services of the project has been successfully transitioned to the expected beneficiaries.


Project execution (or implementation) is the phase in which the plan designed in the prior phases are put into action. The purpose of project execution is to deliver the the project expected results (deliverable and other direct outputs). Typically, this is the longest phase of the project management lifecycle, where most resources are applied.
During the project execution the execution team utilizes all the schedules , procedures and templates that were prepared and anticipated during prior phases. Unanticipated events and situations will inevitably be encountered, and the Project Manager and Project Team will have to deal with.
In the standard division of project management discipline this phase is called "Project Execution and Control"; the term "control" is included here because execution is not a blind implementation of what was written in advance but a watchful process where doing things goes along with understanding what is being done, and re-do it or do it differently when the action does not fully responds to what was meant for. This "control" is an integral part of project management and is a necessary task of the project manager. As such it is different for project evaluation as generally conceived in aid programmes, where evaluation is usually performed by a team different from the project execution team ( e.g. the programme manager, the quality support officer, etc.), so as to independently verify the quality and the efficacy of the work done. (see also establishing a M&E system; Manage the current project/programmes revising scope and schedules.) When the whole team is close-knit control, monitoring and evaluation move hand in hand supporting and giving added value to each other. A possible way of differentiating project control by project evaluation is to say that while "control" is done by the project manager (that include monitoring of subordinates and self evaluation) evaluation is generally done directly or through a group by the line manager of the project manager and is an activity occurring in the "shared field" between project and programme management.



The key elements of project execution is the ability of working effectively in the team and the ability of remaining faithful to project scope while facing unpredicted events and difficulties.
Execution proceeds according to the plan, and its phases are different for each plan. However there are some typical process steps.

project performance measurement

Tools[edit]

Swiss sknife.png Project Execution Tools

See also[edit]

On other sections of this handbook:

Ezra Cornell's first book.jpg Managing the recruitment and selection processes
Ezra Cornell's first book.jpg Manage the Team performance
Ezra Cornell's first book.jpg Review employee performance
Ezra Cornell's first book.jpg Improve employee performance
Ezra Cornell's first book.jpg Recognize and Success and Reward Superior Performance
Ezra Cornell's first book.jpg Discipline Minimal Performers

Script.png We have a story


On Wikipedia

600X WIKIPEDIA LOGO.svg Project management: Executing
600X WIKIPEDIA LOGO.svg Project management: Monitoring and controlling

Tools[edit]

Swiss sknife.png List of things to do in order to illustrate a project
Swiss sknife.png Guidelines: How to manage programmes for a learning organization that is projectized and employee empowering