Professional development

Professional development

Project Plan, follows on from Assessment 2, Business Concept Proposal.
Your team has received in-principle support for your proposal, it is now required that you develop a Business Project Plan for a 3 year period. You must stay within the budget requirements of your proposal. The plan you develop must be of a professional standard ? It needs to be well researched and communicated. It is this plan that will ultimately decide whether your team have the capability to proceed with the initiative.
Assessment 3A is a series of presentations related to different stages of your business concept proposal and your project plan. These are to provide teams with the opportunity to clearly demonstrate your team decision making, research, and commitment to the project. Feedback from your lecturer and peers can be used to help your team refine your ideas for inclusion in the written plans 2A and 3A
Assessment 3B is the written Project Plan for the effective implementation of your proposal. The time-frame for execution of the project is 3 years.

In professional life you often will be required to follow a prescribed format, whether prescribed by your own organisation or by a potential client requesting a tender document or a funding organisation. Tenders, consultancy briefs, finance applications and internal project funding applications will often have very specific formats depending on the organisation, so that is an important part of the learning objectives in this task.
The required project plan template provided below is adapted from the following sources:
? UTS 2008, PM@UTS Program, Guide to Project Management available online at <http://www.projects.uts.edu.au/resources/pdfs/UTSGuidetoProjectManagement2008.pdf>.
? Rakos, J., Dhanraj, K., Fleck, L., Harries, J., Jackson, S., Kennedy, S., 2005, The practical guide to project management documentation, John Wiley &Sons, New Jersey, p99-101.
? Community Access to Natural Resources Information (CANRI) 2002, Program Guidelines for Project Plans 2003-2004, available at: <http://canri.nsw.gov.au/activities/projects/2002/plan/guidelines.pdf>, accessed 8 December 2011
Style requirements
? Use margins of 2cm
? 12 point Arial font for the body of the text
? Single spacing with blank line before and after headings and between paragraphs
? Adopt and use a consistent style for headings and subheadings in terms of how you use larger font size, bolding, italics or underlining.
? Must adhere to requirements below.
Format and content requirements:
1. Unit Cover Sheet, specific for this assessment (available on Blackboard / WebCT).
2. Cover Page with Project name, team name, team motto and individual team names.
3. Table of contents (with automatic page numbering).
4. Project background (this is NOT an executive summary).
Provide a brief analysis of the background to your organisation, the industry in which it operates and the perceived need or opportunity for your project. Demonstrate your research with well chosen and relevant citations.
5. Project definition
a. Nature of the project. Provide a crystal-clear explanation of exactly what your project is and what will be done.
b. Project aim
c. Project scope (inclusions and exclusions). Explain and justify decisions to restrict either the nature or size of the project or the time frame for the project)
d. Prerequisites and Assumptions (including any assumptions about support assumed to be available from within the organisation)
6. Project objectives
A set of specific, measurable, achievable, realistic, and time-bound (SMART) objectives framed under the following 4 headings, using the program logic model template provided in class and in the Blackboard / WebCT resources for assessment 3. EACH objective must satisfy the SMART criteria and each objective must be linked to the activities needed to achieve those objectives and how the success of each activity can be measured (outputs and outcomes):
a. Operational
b. Financial
c. Marketing
d. Corporate social responsibility to employees, customers, the community and the environment.
7. Project stakeholders and stakeholder analysis
Use the template to identify key stakeholders and their respective interests in the project. Explain any implications of your stakeholder analysis for the management of the project
8. Legal and ethical considerations
Consider and describe any legal and ethical considerations relevant to the successful implementation of your project. Demonstrate your efforts to research with appropriate citations.
9. Project schedule
As a team identify all the tasks required to complete your project and think about who will do them, and how long they will take. Work out what tasks are sequential or dependent on the completion of other tasks and which ones can be done concurrently. These need to link with the previous elements of the plan.
Prepare a Gantt chart showing all identified tasks and timelines (annotated/referenced with sources, explanations and justifications as appropriate).
10. Resources
As a team brainstorm to develop a comprehensive list of the resources required for the tasks as listed in your Gantt chart. Try to quantify and provide specific details for each resource including cost indications. This needs to be consistent with the project schedule.
Prepare a well-constructed resource list under the following sub-headings (annotated/referenced as appropriate to show calculations and sources of information upon which estimates were based):
a. Human resources
Design and prepare a table to show a breakdown of how many people will be needed and for how long and with what qualifications or experience. For each person or category of people indicate on what basis will they be employed (full time or part time employment contract, casual etc) and at what rate of pay. If using subcontractors instead of or in addition to employees indicate how many and for how long and at what rate they will be paid. Clearly annotate or reference as appropriate to show calculations and sources of information upon which pay rates and/or contract rates were based.
b. Physical resources
Design and prepare a table to provide a comprehensive list of physical resources needed including premises, furniture, equipment, vehicles, materials etc and on what basis they will be acquired (purchased, rented, leased etc.). Quantify your requirements for each item in physical terms and provide indication of cost rates. Clearly annotate or reference as appropriate to show sources of costing information upon which cost rates were based.
12. Budget (using Excel spreadsheet with calculated cells)
Use your Gantt chart and your breakdown of Human and Physical resources to develop your budget using the template provided in Webct. Your resources list and your Gantt chart are to be used to prepare the budget for your project in three parts:
a. Immediate once?off costs (and revenues if applicable)
b. Detailed month-by-month budget for one year (or the duration of the project if less than one year. Make sure you research and include realistic costs and pay rates and include any employee obligations such as superannuation, work cover insurance and payroll tax. You should allow for any likely price increases over time (e.g. increases in wage rates, price increases over time for other resources due to inflation or other influences)
c. Summary budget projections (up to 3 years) based on the above using key categories of income and expenses.
Provide clear annotations and reference citations either as part of the budget or as a separate and appropriately named appendix. These annotations and references must be used to explain and justify calculations and estimates and to show sources of information upon which each of the estimates were based. The budget needs to be consistent with previous sections of the plan ? especially your Program Logic Model, Gantt chart and Tables of Physical and Human Resources. Ensure that your budget makes sense, is legible, and will be easily understood by the reader ? you need to be transparent in how the figures are derived and it must look credible in the eyes of an objective reader. You also need to consider format issues including meaningful labels, appropriate spacing and column widths, formatting of numbers (e.g. removing cents), page orientation and pagination.
13. Risk management
Use the template provided in Blackboard / WebCT to provide:
a. Risks identified – Prepare a list of major and minor risks to the success of the project and classify each one as high, medium or low risk.
b. Risk Management Plan ? prepare a risk management plan based on the format used in class activities
Explain the most important implications of your risk management analysis and risk management plan.
14. References
? Harvard referencing style must be used throughout the plan to correctly acknowledge all sources in the body of your plan or appendices with a matching entry in the reference list. Show all quotes and in-text citations correctly, especially if you are quoting from websites, which students often neglect. There are many good guides available for how to do correct Harvard citations and how to format references including that from the VU library website: <http://guides.library.vu.edu.au/harvard>.
? The reference list must be properly formatted in accordance with Harvard style guide and be in alphabetical order. Any references used for the annotated bibliography must be cited correctly in the body of the plan, and listed correctly in the reference list.
15. Appendices
? Appendix 1: Project Management Methodology
Drawing on the project management literature, use up to two pages to describe the extent to which the approach taken to the management of the project by your team is consistent with current project management theories and practices. You must demonstrate that you have read a variety of sources by providing appropriate citations of sources listed in your references to explain and justify your methodology. You can access reference sources outlined in the unit-guide and those on webCT/Blackboard, as well as the vast array of project management resources available in the library and on-line resources through library journals, e-resources and the internet.

Appendix 2 – Team reflection on the project plan (one full page)
What did the team agree they had learned from doing the project? What specific new skills and knowledge have you acquired from doing the project? What specific skills have you learned about managing teams? What did the team think was done well and what was not done as well as you would have liked and why? Did the group work as an effective team ? why / why not? What could the team do differently next time to make the team operate more effectively? Your answer may include issues in relation to:
(a) Specific skills and learning related to the various elements of the plan
(b) Specific issues and learning in relation to keeping team meeting records and managing tasks between the team
(c) Specific issues and learning about managing team dynamics and in particular what you learned about dealing more effectively with leadership issues or dealing with non-performing or non-attending team members
(d) Specific issues and learning about how the team should assess individual effort and how to derive fair team participation / allocation percentages.
? Other appendices ? as required. Additional appendices if appropriate to support information provided in the body of the proposal ? e.g. resource and budget calculations and justifications, supporting documents information for background to the project or project management. Do not include any other appendices unless you refer to each one specifically in the body of the project plan.