Define project lifecycle phases on which to scope the planning effort.


The determination of a project’s lifecycle phases provides for planned periods of evaluation and decision making. These periods are normally defined to support logical decision points at which the appropriateness of continued reliance on the project plan and strategy is determined and significant commitments are made concerning resources. Such points provide planned events at which project course corrections and determinations of future scope and cost can be made.

Understanding the project lifecycle is crucial in determining the scope of the planning effort and the timing of initial planning, as well as the timing and criteria (critical milestones) for replanning.

The project lifecycle phases need to be defined depending on the scope of requirements, the estimates for project resources, and the nature of the project. Larger projects can contain multiple phases, such as concept exploration, development, production, operations, and disposal. Within these phases, subphases may be needed. A development phase can include subphases such as requirements analysis, design, fabrication, integration, and verification. The determination of project phases typically includes selection and refinement of one or more development models to address interdependencies and appropriate sequencing of the activities in the phases. Depending on the strategy for development, there can be intermediate phases for the creation of prototypes, increments of capability, or spiral model cycles. In addition, explicit phases for “project startup” and “project close-out” can be included.

Example Work Products

  1. Project lifecycle phases