What is Program Management vs. Project Management?
To understand what is program management vs. project management, you must first understand the difference between a program and a project.
A program is a large project that is made up of several smaller projects that are dependent on each other. Since programs are so large, they are often managed by a team of people, with projects and tasks delegated across team member. Some functions involved in launching a successful program might include outlining objectives, planning execution, managing operations, and reporting on status. Projects are bundled together into a program when the benefits of managing the collection outweigh managing projects as individual units.
Projects are generally smaller, and often come with cost, date, and resource constraints. Project goals are normally short term, whereas the objectives of a program are focused on carrying out a company mission or overarching goal.
So, now that you know the difference between a program and a project, what is program management vs. project management?
A program manager needs to articulate the goals and objectives of the program and how it will impact the business. Program management is mapping out and defining the list of dependent projects that need to be completed to reach an overall goal. When it comes to the program, a program manager needs to focus on strategy and implementation, and how to delegate projects appropriately.
Project management involves managing the operations of an individual project within the program. The project manager coordinates time, budget, resources and delegates tasks across the team. He reports to the program manager on progress and changes made to the initial project plan. Project management is a bit more tactical than program management: it mainly focuses on the operational elements of the project such as meeting deadlines, staying within budget, and completing deliverables.