Simple Steps to Managing a Project Bill Kunitz and Abbie Brown July 7th, 2009
Critical Success Factors • Go through process of developing a Project Definition Worksheet with the entire team – so that everyone understands what, why, and how. • Follow methodology (whatever one you like) but must include define, existing situation, design, build, test, train, document & implement. • Identify a sponsor and meet monthly to keep informed and engaged
Critical Success Factors (cont) • Manage scope – both ensure what you are doing is important and don’t let “shiny objects” distract you throughout the process. • Ensure the analysis is superior: $1,5,50, 1000 rule – don’t just jump right into coding • Maintain a single project plan – it can be excel, project or word it doesn’t matter unless it is a huge project.
Critical Success Factors (cont) • Focus on Change Management and Communication throughout the process which takes different forms at different times including time for “users” to provide their feedback (focus groups, defining requirements, testing, etc.). • Don’t let it become an “IT Project”: pull together a working team that includes those who will build the deliverable and those on the business side who will use it.
Critical Success Factors (cont) • Schedule regular (weekly or biweekly) team meetings. But, don’t just wait for formal meetings – constantly keep in touch with different team members, identifying issues, resolving, communicating • Ensure every meeting has an agenda, be documented in timely manner, and include next steps with who is accountable.
Create design that meets needs • Capture Existing Situation and existing gaps • Research what is possible • Brainstorm options first for process then technology • Create High Level process & technology design • Detail requirements • Create detailed design
Keep Momentum going • Every project should have a project manager • Ensure team members accountable for tasks and the success of the project • Set up monthly Sponsor meetings • Hold regular Team meetings • Develop a Timeline and stick to it (allow some flexibility • Create an Issues list
“Flawless” Delivery • Unit, User, usability testing in test environment (s) • Train • Create User and systems documentation • Get the Help Desk involved early • Follow Communication Strategy: make sure users know what is going to happen, when, have seen the product and given feedback • Manage expectations • Maintain an Implementation Checklist • Post - implementation punch list to make sure any issues are resolved quickly