• The PMI® offers a clear and complete structure of all interdependant project management processes. This does not mean, that this structure can simply be understood; it's a picture of the reality. This structure offered by the PMBOK® is combination of two IS-A-Classifications (Knowledge Areas and Process Groups) and one PART-OF-Classification realized by the Integration Management Processes. Distinguishing these three types of taxonomies perhaps can defend from falling into the traps of ostensible inconsistencies.
• In most of all cases it is not a really good idea to announce officially that the project charter is nothing more than a wish list. The project owner / sponsor naturally believes that he has completely and clearly expressed what he wants to get. But normally there is gap between common sense based descriptions and the expert language. Or the stated target is unreachable - from the viewpoint of an expert. Hence it's task of the project manager to bridge these gaps by tranlating the wished targets of the project charter into the committed targets of the scope statement
(1) Project Integration Management
Task of the Project Integration Management is to describe and organize all "[...] processes and activities needed to identify, combine, unify, and coordinate the various process and project management activities within the Project Management Process Groups": It's the knowledge area of handling those different aspects, which must be integrated into the big picture. Therefore "integration [...] is making choices about where to concentrate resources and effort on any given day, anticipating potential issues, dealing with these issues before the become critical, and coordinating work for the overall project good" (comp. PMBOK3, p. 77f).
For being able to fullfill this task, the Project Integration Management has an internal structure:
- At first the Project Charter must be developed. It's the collection of all those specifications the external people and organizations want to be fullfilled by the project. In the last sense, it's a widely spreaded wishlist.
- Then the Preliminary Project Scope Statement must be developed. The Preliminary Project Scope Statement is the first answer of the project manager to the external units (project owner, sponsor, stakeholders) who enjoin the project targets. But it is not necessarily the (final) commitment of the project manager: In a strict sense the Preliminary Project Scope Statement shows the project owner what the project manager has understood, not what the project manager really will deliver. What he really will deliver (and when, for which costs and with which quality) is determined by the project management plan, eg. by the project scope statement.
- The project manager commits himself on the base of the project management plan: The project management plan must be developed by a process which is constituted by many sub processes being member of different knowledge areas. In the last sense, the project management plan is the collection of all documents generated by those processes being classified as member of the Planning Process Group.
- After planning the project activities the planned activities are executed: The process «Direct and Manage Project Execution» is also a process which is constituted by all those sub processes of the different knowledge areas, which belong to the Executing Process Group.
- And after having executed all process activities finally the project has to be closed by documenting and communicating the deliveries.
Besides this apparently linear structure (which in reality includes many loops) the project manager has to supervise the activities by integrating ...
Briefly spoken one may remember the Project Integration Management Processes as the more or less deep structured main project management processes which are constituted by sub processes