project lifecycle

What Are Phase Gates?

Project Management Structure Diagram

This month’s post comes from the folks over at MindTools, and discusses the use of “Phase Gates” as they relate to project management.


What Is A Phase Gate and How Do I Use One?

For all but the smallest projects, experienced project managers use well-established project management methodologies. These are often published systems – such as PMBOK (Project Management Body of Knowledge) or PRINCE2 – but they can also be in-house methodologies that are specific to the organization.

These approaches have some differences in emphasis, and they tend to use slightly different terminology, but they generally share two key features: projects are delivered in stages, and certain common project management processes run across these stages.

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Five Phases of The Project Management Lifecycle

What do people mean when they talk about the “project management lifecycle”? This helpful article, originally posted by Villanova University, explains in detail the five phases that projects are broken into throughout their life, when executed using the PMBOK methodology.


At the start of a project, the amount of planning and work required can seem overwhelming. There may be dozens, or even hundreds of tasks that need to be completed at just the right time and in just the right sequence.

Seasoned project managers know it is often easier to handle the details of a project and take steps in the right order when you break the project down into phases. Dividing your project management efforts into these five phases can help give your efforts structure and simplify them into a series of logical and manageable steps.


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