While other knowledge areas will focus on specific subject matters, such as scope, cost, or quality, the processes in integration management cover all areas of the project management life-cycle.
The purpose of integration management is to make sure that project activities are unified and well coordinated.
There are six project integration processes that encompass the entire project life-cycle:
- Develop Project Charter (4.1)
Establishing the project, its project manager, boundaries, and business objectives.
- Develop Project Management Plan (4.2)
Defining the project’s goals, deliverables, work, and performance objectives.
- Direct and Manage Project Execution (4.3)
Directing the project activities as defined by the project management plan.
- Monitor and Control Project Work (4.4)
Reviewing the project’s actual work as compared to what was planned.
- Perform Integrated Change Control (4.5)
Coordinating changes so that they’re properly integrated into the project plan and project documents.
- Close Project or Phase (4.6)
Final acceptance of the deliverables by the customer, formally closing the project, and archiving knowledge assets for the organization and future projects.
The major activities that will occur during integration management processes are:
- Framing the project’s business objectives.
- Establishing a plan to meet the business’ objectives.
- Managing and addressing stakeholder expectations.
- Finding alternative approaches to meet needs.
- Negotiating conflicts.
- Determining the appropriate level of rigor that needs to be applied to individual project management processes.
- Making sure the project remains focused on its objectives.
- Making sure the project operates within the established scope, time, cost, quality, and risk constraints.
- Taking actions to correct or prevent problems.
- Managing issues and changes as they occur.
- Verifying the deliverables has met the customer’s needs.
- Hand-off of the final deliverables to the customer.
- Archiving project records in historical libraries.
While the project is underway, it will be faced with options that can be solved only by making trade-offs between scope, time, cost, quality, and risk.
Project integration management best epitomizes one important facet of our role as project managers, and that is serving as the one with the best overall picture of the project.
That means we’re the ones best capable to make sure that decisions, plans, changes, and actions performed aren't.