Project integration management means coordinating all the other processes and activities of project management, so as to ensure that the aim of the project is achieved as efficiently as is practicably possible. In terms of the project management process groups and knowledge areas, then, integration is the means by which the project manager uses the right parts of the process groups and knowledge areas, at the right time, in the right way, to achieve the aim. The PMI's PMBOK says that integration 'includes ... unification, consolidation, articulation, and integrative actions that are crucial to meeting customer and stakeholder requirements and managing expectations'. What does this mean in practical terms? Read on!
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Above all, project integration management is about deciding where to focus project management effort, and deciding in a systematic way that draws on experience and best practice.
Integration, as the term is used in project management, is also about:
making and managing changes in the project,
knowing where to focus resources and effort,
identifying risks and issues, and
reducing or eliminating the impact of risks, issues and changes.
All of this work must be controlled, managed and integrated (Table 4.1) in order to prove beneficial to the overall project.
Table 4.1. Seven project integration management processes
|Initiating ||Planning ||Executing ||Monitoring and controlling ||Closing|
|1 ||Develop project charter ||3 ||Develop project management plan ||4 ||Direct and manage project execution ||5 ||Monitor and control project work ||7 ||Close project|
|2 ||Develop preliminary scope statement || || || || ||6 ||Integrated change control || || |
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'Project Integration Management includes the processes and activities needed to identify, define, combine, unify and coordinate the various processes and project management activities within the Project Management Process Groups. In the project management context, integration includes characteristics of unification, consolidation, articulation and integrative actions that are crucial to project completion, successfully meeting customer and stakeholder requirements and managing expectations.' PMBOK Guide (p.337)