Project Management


Portfolio Milestone Subsections

The Sub-Planet Company (SPC) project involves conducting market research in the U.K before launching a product in the sports shoe market. The project aims to determine customer preferences, the prominent business strategy in the industry, and identify legislation that will impact the company’s operations. The application of project management principles will help attain the project’s expected outcomes.

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Work Breakdown Structure

The SPC market research project requires a work breakdown structure (WBS) to analyze the outcomes and scope of the project effectively. Planning project aspects such as scheduling and budgeting also require a breakdown of project elements (Al-Kasasbeh et al., 2020). Additionally, it offers a road map for implementing any changes in the project’s duration. Decomposition is applied in creating the WBS to divide the project into smaller tasks (PMI, 2017). The main tasks required for market research are assessing customer preferences, collecting information on competitors, relevant industry information, and identifying legislation that will impact operations.

The project can be broken down into four main components based on the market research deliverables. The first is customer preferences which will acquire information from potential customers on factors influencing purchase decisions. The tools and techniques used for this activity include conducting interviews and distributing questionnaires among potential customers. The second component is competitors and analyses the prevalent market strategy in the industry. Finally, the activity can be completed through consulting market experts and performing a SWOT analysis on competitors in the industry.

The third category in the WBS is relevant industry information and is straightforward. The activity can be completed through analyzing databases for any relevant research applicable to the sports shoe industry in the U.K. The final component in the WBS is the regulatory environment and requires identifying relevant legislation that can impact the company’s operations in the U.K. The activity can be accomplished by consulting industry regulators, primarily the government.

Activity List, Attributes, And Milestone List.

The market research’s project scope decomposition and expert judgment can be applied to develop an activity list, activity attributes, and milestone list. There are specific activities that need to be conducted to complete the market research. The activity list will help SPC create a schedule for the project. The market research project consists of six primary activities. The first two activities include interviewing potential customers and offering questionnaires for responses. The next activities include consulting market experts and performing SWOT analysis on established industry players. Finally, the last two activities are analyzing information databases to acquire relevant information and consulting industry regulators.

The activities of the market research project have attributes that can be used to describe them further. Conducting interviews with potential customers cannot proceed without creating and revising a list of relevant questions. Designing and administrative tasks such as printing are required to distribute questionnaires. Assessing competitors requires hiring or training individuals who can assess market information through software or technique to produce relevant outcomes. On the other hand, analyzing information databases also requires personnel to use search engines. Finally, consultation with industry regulators requires retaining the services of a legal counsel for advice and interpretation of legislation.

The milestone list for the project consists of mandatory events that signify an event in the project. The milestones for the market research project are associated with collecting information on the major categories of the WBS. They include collecting customer preferences, acquiring information relevant to competitors, and identifying relevant market regulations.

Precedence Diagramming Method (PDM)

The precedence diagramming method (PDM) can be utilized for the market research project to graphically illustrate the logical relationships between project activities (PMI, 2017). By applying the PDM, an activity can either be a predecessor activity or a successor activity. The logical relationship that features prominently in the SPC market research is the finish-to-start (FS) logical relationship. For instance, the distribution of questionnaires cannot begin until a questionnaire is designed and printed. Therefore, the distribution of questionnaires is the successor activity, while designing a questionnaire is the predecessor activity. The logical relationships are represented below.

Dependency determination in the market research project reveals dependencies in the project’s activities. Mandatory dependency is present as with the logical relationships that exist among project activities (PMI, 2017). These activities provide a physical limitation; for instance, it is impossible to distribute questionnaires without first creating, designing, and printing them in bulk. An external dependency may also exist in the project in the form of the regulatory environment. New legislation may be proposed during the course of the market research requiring research on regulation to halt and resume after legislation passes or is discarded. The project will utilize leads to schedule tasks for leads and lags because the most logical relationships between activities are finish-to-start (FS).

Project Schedule Network Diagram

The market research project activities can be represented using a project network schedule diagram. The primary activities of the market research are independent; consequently, the primary tasks can run concurrently. Therefore, the completion of each activity will directly contribute to the completion of the project. Regarding slack, an incomplete task would mean that the project cannot conclude based on the expected outcomes.

Conclusion and Recommendation

Creating a work breakdown structure will enable the project to focus on the primary components that reflect the project scope. A WBS is essential in scheduling, planning, and budgeting for the project. An activity list can be developed to emphasize the primary tasks with activity attributes to expand on processes involved in each task. Applying the precedence diagramming method to the project reveals that the prominent logical relationship between project activities is finish-to-start. Each predecessor activity has to finish for successor activities to begin. The project network schedule diagram illustrates that the project activities can run concurrently.

References

Al-Kasasbeh, M., Abudayyeh, O., & Liu, H. (2020). An integrated decision support system for building asset management based on WBS. Journal of Building Engineering, 101959. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jobe.2020.101959.

PMI. (2017). A Guide to the Project Management Body of Knowledge: (PMBOK guide) (6th ed.). Project Management Institute.

APPENDIX

WORK BREAKDOWN STRUCTURE

Market Research

Relevant industry information

Regulatory Environment

Competitors

Potential Customers

Relevant legislation

Business Strategy

Quality Component

Analyzing information databases

Consult Industry Regulators

Conduct

Interviews

Distribute Questionnaires

Consult market Experts

Perform SWOT Analysis

ACTIVITY LIST

Market Research Project
ACTIVITY LIST
ACTIVITY IDACTIVITY TITLEACTIVITY DESCRIPTION
WBS1.1.0Construct interview questionsCreating interview questions for customers
WBS1.1.1Design QuestionnaireConstructing the questionnaire that will be distributed
WBS1.1.2Interviewing potential customersConducting the actual interview with potential customers
WBS1.1.3Consulting market expertsSeeking relevant information from industry professionals
WBS1.1.4Performing SWOT analysisIdentify the strengths and weaknesses of market players
WBS1.1.5Analyzing information databasesSeeking relevant information through search engines from databases
WBS1.1.6Consulting industry regulatorsApproaching government officials to acquire information about the legal framework.

PRECEDENCE DIAGRAMMING METHOD ACTIVITY RELATIONSHIPS

Finish to Start (FS)

Distributing Questionnaires

Designing Questionnaire

Finish to Start (FS)

Conducting Interviews

Creating Interviews Questions

PROJECT NETWORK SCHEDULE DIAGRAM

Perform SWOT Analysis

Begin

Consult market Experts

End

Consult Industry Regulators

Analyzing information databases

Distribute Questionnaires

Conduct

Interviews

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