Friday, November 26, 2010

Project Management Snippets

I've been following the recent Project Management series on the Register and pulled out a few snippets to act as a refresher of good practices:

Reasons for Budget Overruns
  • Software versions not specified or incompatible
  • Negligence of service level issues e.g. resilience, disaster recovery, business continuity
  • Lack of time for sufficient testing
  • Attempts to retrofit security and access restrictions
  • Lack of firm control over scope creep - authority and accountability required
  • Insufficient built-in contingency
  • Lack of regular checkpoints and/or failure to spot early warning signs

When Projects Go Right

  • Everyone working from the same page with a clear vision
  • Setting of expectations that are challengeable yet achieveable
  • Infrastructure and software dependencies taken into account
  • Support and commitment from business especially senior management
  • Consideration of security, training and support, mobile working, regulatory issues, data storage
  • Availability of sufficient resources and skills with flexibility to deal with overcommittment of individuals
  • Balance internal politics and sensitivities
  • Clear lines of reporting upwards

How not to Project Manage

  • Assuming they know what you do - need to make your contributions clear
  • Assuming judged on past success - need to have had failures in order to learn
  • Assuming estimates are correct - need to research past costs and timings
  • Assuming you must always be right - do not need to the know-all guru
  • Assuming planning is a shared responsibility - planning, planning, planning!

Project Communications

  • Define the audience(s), appropriate levels of info and frequency
  • Define how the comms plan will be measured and reviewed
  • Time comms to co-incide with project checkpoints/milestones
  • Consider variety of comms methods depending upon cost, immediacy, privacy and accessibility

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