Concept of Project and Its Characteristics

A project is a series of activities and tasks that:

  • have a specific set of objectives,
  • have a time-bound intervention,
  • have funding limits
  • consumes resources like money, people, equipment, etc.
  • create a unique product, service, or result.

Characteristics of Project

  • Flexibility
  • Uniqueness
  • Single entity
  • Non-routine and non-repetitive
  • Constraints
  • A clear start and end dates ( temporary life span)
  • Require funds
  • Specific objectives
  • Resource integration
  • Teamwork
  • Planning and Control
  • Contains uncertainties and risk
  • Beneficiaries
  • Time, cost, and performance requirements.

1. Flexibility

It is the ability of a project to adapt to variances and changes happening within the project environment. Since change and project are synonymous, changes occur throughout the project life.

2. Uniqueness

Each project should give a unique product, service, or result. The project should be unique having its own features. The uniqueness of a project can be measured by considering many factors like objectives, features, and application of the project.

3. Single Entity

The project is one whole thing. All the resources, skilled and unskilled manpower, and technical persons are considered teams.

4. Constraints

These are the limiting factors that can impact quality, delivery, and overall project success. There are three major constraints of the project which are time, scope, and cost which represent a triple constraint triangle. Change in any one constraint causes changes in others which ultimately changes the quality of the project.

triple constraint

5. Temporary life span

Every project is invariably time-bound. The quality of the project can be assured if it is completed in the mentioned time. Hence, the project cannot be ceaseless and indefinite.

6. Requires fund

Each project has a definite budget within which it should fulfill its objectives. No project can be implemented successfully without adequate funds.

7. Specific objectives

Every project has its own objectives or goals considering time, budget, quality, and quantity. Objectives are defined initially but can be according to the need. Objectives are key characteristics of the project which show the progress of the project.

8. Resource integration

For any project to be completed, it requires different resources like capital, people, equipment, technology, etc.

9. Teamwork

The project has a multi-disciplinary team. It means, it consists of different members having different characteristics and from different disciplines.

10. Planning and Control

Proper planning guides the execution and success of the project. Good planning is the key to meeting the project objectives within a defined time and budget.

11. Contains uncertainties and risk

The project is generally based on forecasting. So risk and uncertainties are always associated with projects. There is a high risk in those projects which are not properly defined.

12. Beneficiaries

They are the target group of the project, those who will benefit from the project. Two types of beneficiaries:

  • Direct beneficiaries
  • Indirect beneficiaries
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