The Next Generation
We have seen a powerful generic third level lifecycle model. This model expands
the Plan-Do model, through the Conceive-Define-Execute-Finish (C-D-E-F) model
to an eight stage model, by subdividing each of the C-D-E-F phases. Two further
stages are added to recognize that there is a time lag between the technical
completion of the project and the administrative completion.
This model has intrinsic quality management systems by creating an internal
referenced stage-gate system and inter-project reference for management by projects
and the Planning phase develops the stage-gate criteria for the Doing Phase.
With project delivery as the product, TQM principles can be applied and this
implies the need for a department to take ownership of this product, and a senior
manager to be accountable, such as a CPO.
From the model, two separate APMA's, for the Planning and the Doing phases,
emerge. This is supported by an indication that the two halves both contain the
five project processes, although this is harder to demonstrate for the Planning
phase due to its more iterative nature. The product of the two phases is likely
to be different, the Planning phase always being tangible/intellect and the Doing
phase being any of the four potential APMAs. The Dynamic Base Line model of project
management also supports this division, especially if the Doing phase is craft
based, allowing Planning to be Management by Methods and Doing to be Management
The author believes that a generic fourth level model is unlikely to arise
for at least two reasons. Firstly, the lifecycle model and the WBS are intricately
linked and the lifecycle model should aid in the development of the WBS, and
at the current nine phases (sanction is more a milestone) then this model has
the magic number seven (plus or minus two) required for easy mental grasp.
Secondly, this model only just constrains all the potential APMAs and any further
generic levels are likely to be applicable to specific APMA, or even an industry
This model strengthens one of three essential pillars of a
successful project management system, the lifecycle. Its use does not ensure
project success, nor does the failure to use it ensure project failure, but using
it is likely to load the odds in your favor.
Reference to The Magical Number Seven, Plus or Minus Two: Some Limits on our Capacity
for Processing Information by G. A. Miller, Harvard University, 1956