Microsoft Office Project Server 2003, Microsoft Office Project Professional 2003, and Microsoft Office Project Web Access 2003 are the official product names for the EPM solution. Although these names are used to describe the product throughout this book, you will also see the products referenced by shortened versions of their names. The server product is generally referenced simply as Project Server, or Server, the desktop tool often is referred to as Project Professional, and the web interface is typically abbreviated as PWA.
Enterprise Project Management (EPM) is another name that Microsoft has chosen to describe the entire set of products in the software package.
For a detailed explanation of EPM philosophy and EPM tools, see Chapters 1 and 2.
EPM is also used in many contexts to mean Enterprise Portfolio Management and Enterprise Program Management. Unfortunately, the terms are often used interchangeably, and this causes considerable confusion and long, philosophical arguments about the "correct" use of the terms. For purposes of this book, the authors have chosen to stay with the definition used by Microsoft for its product. We do, however, offer the following definitions for the terms project, program, and portfolio in the hope that these definitions will assist the reader in understanding the intent of the configuration options found throughout the book.
Project According to Harold Kerzner, in Project Management: A Systems Approach to Planning, Scheduling, and Controlling, a project is a series of activities that have a specific objective, defined start/end dates, and funding limits, and that consume resources. Using this definition, it is easy to see how most of an organization's resources (outside a regular operational context) are focused toward project work. Microsoft's EPM product, however, has also enabled organizations to "projectize" operational work as administrative projects so that true resource utilization is possible.
For a detailed explanation of administrative projects, see Chapter 11.
Program There are many definitions and uses of this term in the project management context. The differences vary by organization and individual. There are so many definitions that it is difficult to provide a definition. For purposes of this context, however, a program is a grouping of projects related to each other in some manner. The relationship may be organizational or functional, or it may refer to a group of projects that have been subdivided for ease of execution. Any and all of these relationships can be managed and depicted with the EPM software.
Portfolio Portfolio management moves project and program management to the enterprise level. The concept has received a great deal of attention in recent years from many organizations including software developers and standards bodies. The authors of this book define portfolio management as the ongoing and proactive planning, execution, and control of the future of an enterprise. It is evolutionary and is based on a continuous improvement model. In the context of the EPM tool, portfolio management enables the organization to oversee and manage its projects, programs, and operational activities.