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Learning Activity 1

Which of the following activities would you consider to be projects?

  • Setting a quality assurance system
  • Transferring tasks from an outmoded computer installation to a new system
  • Establishing a jointly agreed protocol to review the quality of a service provided by new supplier
  • Managing staff provision in an information centre
  • Managing client records from a home cleaning service
  • Developing a new documented administrative procedure

Learning Activity 2

From your experience, make a list of the most important factors that have contributed to the success of any projects in which you have been involved.

Which three factors would you rank as most important?

Learning Activity 3

Try to complete the task breakdown chart below, that outlines the potential tasks required to erect a temporary building.


Learning Activity 4

Imagine that you are managing a project that relies on services provided by one supplier over a six-month period. Make a list of the possible risks associated with that supplier.

Learning Activity 5

For each of the scenarios below, identify which categories of risk are likely to be most significant and suggest appropriate strategies for dealing with them.

Case 1
A voluntary organisation providing accommodation and resettlement services for homeless people is proposing to extend its activities into another town where there is an established need. Local authority financial support has been offered verbally but no firm offer of funding has made in writing. Moreover, previous attempts by another organisation to do similar work met with resistance from a residents’ association. Staff in the organisation are keen to support the proposal, but the manager who would be responsible for the project is on long-term sick leave.

Case 2
A personnel manager set up a pilot project to test the practicalities of an anticipated change in the law involving the employment of people with disabilities. There were questions about whether the manager was wasting money and time by running the pilot because it seemed possible that the legislation would not proceed through Parliament without substantial changes being made that might change requirements placed on employers.

Case 3
A contracts manager for cleaning services in an office block set up a project to develop a quality monitoring system based on performance indicators developed from the office users. She was concerned about the timing of the change: contracts were about to be retendered, so new contractors would not know the performance indicators when they applied to deliver the service. There was also concern about whether there would be sufficient staff to monitor contractors’ performance and how long it would take to train them to do the job.

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