PMP Certification: Project Quality Management 101

Note if you are taking the PMP® exam from 26 March 2018 onwards: click here to read the updated PMP® study material based on PMBOK® Guide 6th Edition.

Cheers, Stefania

Project Quality Management is the fifth knowledge area of project management.

It assures that project deliverables meet their identified requirements and project management processes are properly performed.

Based on chapter 8 of PMBOK® Guide 5th Edition, here you will find:

  • project management graphic of Project Quality Management, a quick reference guide to its definition and processes
  • Project Quality Management WHATs, WHYs, WHENs, and HOWs — by Project Quality Management processes

Read on!

Project Quality Management 101

by Project Management Process Group

1. Plan Quality Management

  • WHAT Plan Quality Management Is. The Plan Quality Management process gathers all of the information available to project managers at the beginning of projects and figures out how they will measure quality and prevent defects.
  • WHY Plan Quality Management Is Important. A project manager starts the Plan Quality Management process at the beginning of the planning phase of the project, in conjunction with other Planning processes.
  • WHEN Plan Quality Management Is Executed. Quality is planned from the start of a project –not just inspected. Indeed, its main output, the Quality Management plan, is a key tool for preventing defects on the project and reduce the cost of quality.
  • HOW Plan Quality Management Operates.
InputsTools and techniquesOutputs
  1. Quality management plan
  2. Process improvement plan
  3. Quality metrics
  4. Quality control measurements
  5. Project documents
  1. Cost-benefit analysis
  2. Cost of quality
  3. Seven basic quality tools
  4. Benchmarking
    Design of experiments
  5. Statistical sampling
  6. Additional quality planning tools
  7. Meetings
  1. Quality management plan
  2. Process improvement plan
  3. Quality metrics
  4. Quality checklists
  5. Project documents updates

Source: PMBOK® Guide, 5th ed., Chapter 8, section 8.1, p. 232.

2. Perform Quality Assurance

  • WHAT Perform Quality Assurance Is. Project Quality Assurance is an executing process concerned with overall process improvement of the activities and processes undertaken to achieve quality. In other words, project managers take all of the outputs from Plan Quality Management and Control Quality and look at them to see if projects are using the correct and most efficient processes to meet their requirements.
  • WHY Perform Quality Assurance Is Important. If the quality of both process and activities improves, then the quality of deliverables should improve as well, bringing also positive implications to the other five project constraints (time, scope, cost, resources, and risk).
  • WHEN Perform Quality Assurance Is Executed. The Project Quality Assurance process is iterative in nature. A project manager starts performing quality assurance after the other quality processes are complete and continues throughout the life of the project.
  • HOW Perform Quality Assurance Operates.
InputsTools and techniquesOutputs
  1. Quality management plan
  2. Human resource management plan
  3. Scope baseline
  4. Project schedule
  5. Risk register
  6. Enterprise environmental factors
  7. Organizational process assets
  1. Quality management and control tools
  2. Quality audits
  3. Process analysis
  1. Change requests
  2. Project management plan updates
  3. Project documents updates
  4. Organizational process assets updates

Source: PMBOK® Guide, 5th ed., Chapter 8, section 8.2, p. 243.

3. Control Quality

  • WHAT Control Quality Is. Control Quality process inspects and reviews work products to find defects. In case of mismatches between work performance information and quality plan and metrics, a project manager recommends a change. This way, the problem is either fixed or prevented from happening again.
  • WHY Control Quality Is Important. Control Quality process guarantees that every product and project deliverable meets quality standards. Indeed, deliverables can go through the Validate Scope process for customer acceptance only once verified by Control Quality.
  • WHEN Control Quality Is Executed. The first product deliverable marks the beginning of the Control Quality process, then carried on throughout much of the project.
  • HOW Control Quality Operates.
InputsTools and techniquesOutputs
  1. Project management plan
  2. Quality metrics
  3. Quality checklists
  4. Work performance data
  5. Approved change requests
  6. Deliverables
  7. Project documents
  8. Organizational process assets
  1. Seven basic quality tools
  2. Statistical sampling
  3. Inspection
  4. Approved change requests review
  1. Quality control measurements
  2. Validated changes
  3. Verified deliverables
  4. Work performance information
  5. Change requests
  6. Project management plan updates
  7. Project documents updates
  8. Organizational process assets updates

Source: PMBOK® Guide, 5th ed., Chapter 8, section 8.3, p. 249.

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Hi, I am Stefania, hearth and keyboard behind Tipsographic, a free online resource for everybody interested in project management and agile. I specialize in project management tips, tools, and tricks. When I'm not writing, you can find me road cycling around Tuscany or spending time with friends and family.

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