According to an article in CIO.com, more than half of IT projects still fail. Let’s make sure together your next project isn’t one of them.
It doesn’t matter what development methods you use; you will have IT projects that fail. Each project is unique in its own way. So relying on what studies have identified as the most common failures might not apply in your case. Reasons for projects failing could be, for example, the lack of proper requirements, unrealistic expectations, or lack of resources.
How many times have you seen project reports with everything in “green” until about the last month or so and then switching to “red” in a blink of an eye? Truth be told, theses issues didn’t appear out of nowhere. This is because Project Managers report problems after the point of no return due to fear of failure.
Our approach to project management is different. It’s based on four basic principles:
- Project framework
- Team dynamics
- Business involvement
It’s simple but it’s the reason for our project being successful.
For a project to succeed, it needs to have a solid framework. Our framework consists of a project scope, business goals and what we call “The Critical Path”.
The project scope, in all simplicity, is a definition of what kind of change you want to achieve in the project. It consists of a high-level definition of what needs to be done, the pre-requisites and the limitations.
Your business goals define why the project is being done. Is it cost-efficiency, improved throughput or something else. Whatever the goals are, they must be measurable and achievable. Before we begin any project, we ensure that we understand your business and project goals. We also challenge your goals to make sure you’re doing the projects for the right reason, they are achievable and it’s something that you can’t do somehow else.
A good project also has a “Critical Path”. A Critical Path is a minimum project scope that must be met. It is not the desired end result but a result with what the business can live with for a limited time. For example, manual processes in first release phases. Defining a critical path helps to prioritize and focus on getting the rights things done. Together we will define “The Critical Path” for your project.
The project scope, business goals, and critical path form the framework for the project team to work with.
Communication plays a crucial role in any successful projects. A good project manager must be able to communicate well with the project team and all stakeholders. We aren’t afraid to raise a red flag even at the beginning of a project. This way, we can work together on solving the issues. The earlier you raise issues, the more stakeholders provide support to solve them. We swiftly communicate the consequences of not solving issues. We believe in raising all issues to the right level as quickly as possible. so that you have the right information to support the project.
Team dynamics are another important factor. Project managers can’t solve all issues, nor do they necessarily know how to solve them. In fact, in most cases, they shouldn’t even try to solve them. Solving issues is the job of the team of experts working on the project. When managing a project, we empower the project team to create the best solution. Our role is to ask the right questions and gather the pros and cons. We ensure everyone is aware of what’s going on. We have an opinion and we will state it, but it’s your business and you will make the final calls.
Business involvement plays an important role in any IT project. If your business is not involved, you will not succeed. That’s why we involve your business as much as we can. Forget normal meetings, where everyone sits and looks at nice PowerPoint slides. Instead, we sit together with your business to understand their work and how the upcoming change will impact their work. In every step of the project, we involve your business in different ways. We conduct service design and validation workshops with them. The development team shows what the solution looks like and how it works. We create working mockups, wireframes or prototypes. and request all levels of your business to comment them. That way, you’re involved, you know what’s going on and can take corrective actions if needed.
Project Management isn’t rocket science. We can work with different methodologies that fit to your organization. Having the above fundamentals in place, we will succeed together.