If you receive errors when attempting to view this white paper, please install the latest version of
"Logic Software is a leading custom software development and outsourcing
company in its field.Some of the World's most successful Independent Software Vendors."
Source : Logic Software
How to Start a No-fail Project, Part 3: Planning for Success
is also known as :
Project Management Application
Project Management Approach
Project Management Articles
Project Management Association
Project Management Best Practices
Project Management Certification
Project Management Checklist,
Project Management Communications,
Project Management Companies,
Project Management Cost,
Project Management Definition,
Project Management Development,
Project Management Document,
Project Management Documentation,
Project Management Example,
Project Management Forms,
Project Management Framework,
Project Management Freeware,
Project Management Guide,
Project Management Help,
Project Management Implementation,
Project Management Information,
Project Management Life Cycle,
Project Management Methodology,
Project Management News,
Project Management Objectives,
Project Management Overview,
Project Management Phases,
Project Management Plan,
Project Management Planning,
Project Management Practice,
Project Management Process,
Project Management Professional,
Project Management Program,
Project Management Proposal,
Project Management Report,
Project Management Requirements,
Project Management Resources,
Project Management Service.
According to The Standish Group (www.standishgroup.com), a major IT research
institution, only 34% of IT projects are completed on time and within budget. Standish
estimates that 51% overrun their schedules and surpass their budgets while 15% are
cancelled. Although these findings show vast improvement from their first study in
1994, the rates are still alarming.
In other words, there is only one chance in three that your next project will succeed.
These are fairly depressing odds. However, unlike Texas No-Limit Hold’em, your next
IT project does not have to be a gamble. By knowing the most common causes of project
failure, you and your company can play your cards well and lay down a winning hand
Recognized PM specialists all agree that the following are the primary factors that could
ruin your project:
- Lack of objective project status reports;
- Poor communication within a team;
- Internal resistance to the project management tools and methodologies;
- Changing requirement during development;
- Inadequate initial project planning.
In this article, we will review one of these obstacles – Inadequate Initial Project Planning
and highlight three key areas to focus on in order to prevent it.
Imagine the exhilaration of climbing Mount Everest, compass in one hand, ice axe in the
other. Not wanting to delay the journey any longer, you have convinced yourself that
problems do not have to be addressed until they arise. As such, you have completely
neglected to check your food supply (running low, even as you begin your ascent) and
you have no real idea which parts of Everest experts say to avoid at all costs. Sounds
pretty ridiculous, doesn’t it? And yet, inadequate initial planning and estimation is the
reason that 48% of projects faill:
1 Hansen, Kris. “Estimate your application development project.” 19 June 2007. IBM. 26 May 2008
1. Lay Down the Details
Just as you would not undergo a drastic haircut without first giving the hairdresser an
idea of what you are looking for, you should not begin a project without proper project
Often projects are rushed during the development stage, leaving certain details
completely overlooked. Though the project may look flawless on the surface, problems
arising from poor planning begin to emerge as the project progresses.
Effective project management should start with a comprehensive outline of all details
required to advance project success. To ensure consensus between project manager,
project sponsor, and any other stakeholders involved, sufficient time must be spent
defining the objectives, scope, assumptions, constraints, organization, and overall
approach of the project.
Once approved, the project definition becomes the basis for all work to be performed
during the project.
2. Be Prepared like a Boy Scout
Project details set parameters on the project.
Once these limits have been established, a
project work plan should be created to
specify exactly how the project will be carried
out. This plan should make estimations of
effort and time needed, mapping out work at
least several weeks in advance to ensure that
resources are properly allocated.
At this stage, it is important that project team
members and all stakeholders have a
common understanding of how the project
will be managed. To promote this
understanding, create a document that details
how the team will address issues, scope,
quality, risk, and communication.
- Try to avoid creating tasks longer
than sixteen hours in duration.
The longer a task lasts, the harder
it is to make accurate estimations.
If you know that a task will run
longer, split the task into several
- Do not assign the same task to
several people. When this
happens, no one feels responsible
for the task because they assume
that someone else will take the
lead. If you have multiple people
working on the same task, split
the task into parts and assign
3. Keep Everyone in the Loop
Consensus and cooperation are key contributors to project success, accomplished only
by keeping all team members and stakeholders involved throughout the process. It is
therefore important that everyone is given a say in the project. Differences in
expectations and opinions, though frustrating, should be resolved before the project
starts; putting resolution off only increases future problems.
Not so long ago, the most common approach to project management was the use of
paper, whiteboards, and spreadsheets. Today, however, this approach is
counterproductive. Rather than having team members run to one location each time
they need to update project status, many organizations are now discovering the benefits
of web-based project management software.
This software allows everyone to visualize the project throughout the entire process and
updates to be made 24/7 from any internet-connected computer. The entire team can
view status, post feedback, and attach documents directly to the project entry. Most
people would agree that keeping everyone in the loop is crucial to project success, and
with web-based software growing in popularity, time-consuming presentations and
inconvenient office visits are no longer the only option.
If you are looking to cut costs, reduce duration, and dramatically improve project
quality, make sure to:
- Lay Down the Details
- Be Prepared like a Boy Scout
- Keep Everyone in the Loop
You’ve heard the saying, “If you fail to plan, you plan to fail”. Planning provides
direction and foundation for a successful project- spend adequate time defining
details, preparing procedures, and resolving differences, and you will be well on
your way to conquering your own workplace Everests.
Logic Software Inc. is the developer of Easy Projects .NET – the easiest all-in-one
web based project management solution. This tool was specifically designed to make
project management and task tracking hassle free and straightforward.
Visit www.EasyProjects.net to see why project managers in over 35 countries
choose Easy Projects .NET for project planning, activity tracking and team