Key Difference – Project Management vs Functional Management
The key difference between project management and functional management is that project management is the process of initiating, planning, executing, controlling, and closing the work of a project to achieve a specific objective whereas functional management is managing the routing activities in the organization relating to various functions such as production, sales, and marketing, finance etc. in order to achieve the overall objective of the organization. Managing functional tasks are done from the inception to the end of a business organization. On the other hand, projects are carried out based on a specific need.
What is Project Management?
A project is a collection of tasks to be executed over a specific period of time to achieve a particular objective. It is a unique exercise that will be terminated following the achievement of the project objective.
Project management is the process of initiating, planning, executing, controlling, and closing the work of a project to achieve a pre-determined objective. Project management institute (PMI) defines project management as “the application of knowledge, skills, tools and techniques to a broad range of activities in order to meet the requirements of a particular project”.
Stages in Project Management
- Project conception and initiation
This is where the need to implement the project is discussed along with the objective of the project. The outcome of a project has to be achievable, measurable and result oriented.
- Project definition and planning
In this phase, the scope of the project is put down in writing with the tasks to be performed. Assigning a project manager is one of the most critical actions during the planning stage. Following the selection of the project manager, the project team is selected and resources and responsibilities will be allocated.
- Project launch or execution
Projects are generally executed in stages where the project team will move to the subsequent stage at the completion of one stage. The project manager should ensure that the project is run smoothly and should resolve any related issues if there are any.
- Project performance monitoring and control
The project manager will continue to compare project status and progress to the actual plan, as resources perform the scheduled tasks. During this phase, it is important for the project manager to adjust schedules if necessary to keep the project on track.
- Project close
After project tasks are completed and results are delivered, an evaluation is necessary to assess the project success and to ensure learning for future projects. This exercise is referred to as the ‘post completion audit’.
Undertaking projects and project management can be seen in many industries including research, business management, medicine, and engineering. The project manager is an integral person in a project and has to be equipped with good communication skills, analytical skills, change management skills and negotiation skills to deliver the intended outcome of the project.
What is Functional Management?
Functional management refers to managing the routing activities in the organization relating to various functions such as production, sales, and marketing, finance etc. Functional managers have ongoing responsibilities and are not usually directly associated with project teams. The main task of functional managers is to ensure that the daily business activities are conducted smoothly, which in turn will assist in realizing the overall corporate objectives.
Duties of a Functional Manager
- Share professional suggestion and knowledge with the employees
- Allocate resources efficiently by identifying the resource priorities
- Provide employees with learning opportunities
- Identify cost inefficiencies and address them to improve efficiency
What is the difference between Project Management and Functional Management?
Project Management vs Functional Management
|Project management is the process of initiating, planning, executing, controlling, and closing the work of a project to achieve a specific objective.||Functional management is managing the routing activities in the organization relating to various functions such as production, sales, and marketing, finance etc. in order to achieve the overall objective of the organization.|
|Project management is unique and the project is terminated once the objective is achieved.||Functional management is a continuous and repetitive process.|
|Project management is a onetime activity with a specified time span.||Functional management is an ongoing activity.|
Summary – Project Management vs Functional Management
The difference between project management and functional management can be easily identified by taking into account the characteristics of a project. If the focus is to achieve a specific objective within a defined period of time that is outside the routine business operations, such a task relates to project management. Managing daily business activities with the intention of realizing the overall purpose of the company is referred to as functional management. Both aspects are very important to an organization where projects will have to be undertaken based on specific business requirements.
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1. “Project Management Knowledge Areas” By DEPARTMENT OF VETERANS AFFAIRS Office of Information and Technology – Project Management Guide (Public Domain) via Commons Wikimedia