The subject of project management has recently become as a key concern in various engineering fields. The proliferation of megaprojects worldwide, aiming to take best advantage of the latest technological developments, itself demands new or improved methods of project management to cope with the fast developing.
As the concept of a project differs fundamentally from that of daily or routine operations, it follows that a number of principles and conceptions of project management must also diverge from those followed in the realm of daily operations management.
In operations management, production managers tend generally to focus on production / output volume per unit time — usually the current week compared to the previous week and-or the same week last year; profits accumulated and-or compared for the same time unit(s); sales or operational orders accumulated and-or compared for the same time unit(s); actual versus budgeted expenditure for the current quarter and the same quarter the year before; and sales revenue and sales volume for a given product compared
to the performance of competitors producing / marketing a similar product.
Project management may be defined as the planning, organization, direction, and control of all kinds of resources in a specific time period for achieving a specific objective comprised of various financial and non-financial targets.
This should help clarify the difference in outlook of the project manager and the operations manager. The project managers goal is to finish the project on time. Then he evaluates where he will relocate after finishing the project. The operations manager, on the other hand, never wants daily production to stop, and cannot dream of work stopping — as distinct from the project manager’s goal of overall task completion.