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Project Management: Phases

Project Phases

There are distinct phases to the project. However, these are not necessarily carried out in a linear sequential fashion. Instead, the project will be broken up into planned releases and iterations (see below). Each iteration or release may involve several of the phases, though it is likely that the emphasis will be on one or two of them, with the emphasis shifting to the later phases as the project evolves.

The phases are:

  1. Research: The collection of information that can help with determining the scope and planning for other activities.
  2. Requirements: The gathering and documenting of requirements, which may be functional, technical or content related.
  3. Specification: Formal, though light-weight, more technically oriented documentation of how the requirements will be met.
  4. Design: Where the content, styling, functionality, behaviour and other aspects of the site are defined at a low level.
  5. Development: Essentially the actual writing of the web pages. This may involve writing text documents, XHTML code, CSS style sheets, PHP & JavaScript source code. It may also involve databases and content management systems. In all likelihood it will tend be a mixture of all of them.
  6. Testing: Quality control, testing, debugging & fixing. Naturally, this phase may involve a jump back to an earlier phase, in order to resolve any issues that are generated as a result of this phase.
  7. Deployment: Activities that result in the site's next iteration or release being made available to the internet.
  8. Feedback: Collecting feedback and other input from the site's visitors and users. Raising issues as a result and making decisions about what to incorporate in the next release.

Rather than being a sequence, it would be more accurate to describe the phases as being part of an on-going life cycle.

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