Select Page

Categories

Project Management Huts

A Project Management Hut is a collection of articles, covering the whole process to manage a project, from project initiation to project closure, including all the necessary templates, and written by one or more elite project managers.

Below is the list of available Project Management Huts on PM Hut. More on the way…

Project Management Process by John Filicetti
A Project Management Primer by Nick Jenkins
A Quick Guide to Project Management by Manjeet Singh
Project Management for Construction by Chris Hendrickson
Project Management Handbook by Wouter Baars.
Introduction to Project Management by JISC infoNet.


More Articles

Read the Complete Article

Project Management Primer: Final Thoughts

Project Management Primer: Final Thoughts (#54 in the Hut A Project Management Primer)
By Nick Jenkins

Project management can be a difficult and thankless task. When things go wrong you shoulder the blame and take responsibility. When things go right the credit goes to the team and rarely do you get singled out for a pat on the back.

Yet projects come with astounding rewards. Astute business managers know that it is not the cleverest technical specialist or the smoothest talking salesman who adds real value to a business. It’s the people that can get things done. People who consistently deliver soon gains a reputation for solving problems and will be rewarded accordingly.

Having said that, getting things done is not always easy. Politics, resource limitations, technical problems, personal differences and organisational obstructions can all hamper your attempts to succeed.

The ideas in this series are not a new proprietary model nor a mystical insight into project management. Read the Complete Article

Project Implementation – Training

Project Implementation – Training (#53 in the Hut A Project Management Primer)
By Nick Jenkins

Simply dumping your product or system on an unprepared support team will not be appreciated. The people who are to support your finalised project need to be trained and prepared to do their job properly. As usual the scale of this training will vary with the scale of your project.

At the bottom end of the scale, provision of user manuals and support manuals will be adequate. If your product or system is not very complicated then that may be sufficient. More complicated products might require specific training guides and support material, such as tutorials or simulations to get the support team up to speed. At the top end of the training rung you might want to consider full blown training presentations and accreditation for support analysts.

Also consider using members of your project team to train support analysts. Read the Complete Article

Project Implementation – Maintenance and Upgrades

Project Implementation – Maintenance and Upgrades (#52 in the Hut A Project Management Primer)
By Nick Jenkins

If your project has any permanency whatsoever it will require maintenance and possible upgrades. While you will have done your level best to provide for all the users’ requirements, those requirements will evolve over time and your product must evolve with them.

An important part of the maintainability is to make your project, design documentation and supporting material available as an important reference for those that follow in your footsteps. If they are to successfully implement changes within your system to cope with the future needs of users they must understand your thinking.

Scheduling Upgrades

Upgrades are always necessary. You can either ignore them or plan for them ahead of time. If you acknowledge an upgrade or maintenance release will be necessary then you can plan one, say three months from the initial launch of your project. Read the Complete Article

Project Implementation – Positive Perception

Project Implementation – Positive Perception (#51 in the Hut A Project Management Primer)
By Nick Jenkins

Most technical people are poor at the public relations side of business. Communications and marketing is generally not our strong point. But no matter how much we might like to think differently, people base decisions upon perceptions. Your project needs to create a positive perception as much as it needs to create a positive result.

To this end you need to capitalise on the successful delivery of your project and put together a “golive” launch that suitably dazzles your intended audience. This might not be a black tie event with flowing champagne and a marching band, but there should be some event that punctuates the launch of your project. This is also a good way to reward your project team and underscore your appreciation for all the hard work. At the very, very least you should launch your project with a general announcement like an email to all the stakeholders. Read the Complete Article

Project Implementation – Release Control

Project Implementation – Release Control (#50 in the Hut A Project Management Primer)
By Nick Jenkins

When you release a product ‘into the wild’ you will need to know what you released, to whom and when. This may seem trivial but you’ll want to keep track of things so you can make fixes and changes as the customer discovers problems (and they will!).

These are the things you typically need to track for each release :

  • The version number or identifier of the release
  • The date and time of the release
  • The purpose of the release (maintenance, bug fix, testing etc)
  • For each component within the release
    • the name and version number of the component
    • the date it was last modified

Here is an example :

Release Control Example

Release Control Example

Next in the Hut A Project Management Primer:

Project Implementation – Positive Perception

Previously in the Hut A Project Management Primer:

Project Implementation – Acceptance Testing

Nick Jenkins is an IT manager with 10 years experience in software development, project management and software testing. Read the Complete Article

Implementation – Introduction

Implementation – Introduction (#48 in the Hut A Project Management Primer)
By Nick Jenkins

Hang on a minute, you’re not finished yet!

Okay, the project’s ready, development has finished and it’s been thoroughly tested. But you still have to roll it out to a client who’s going to use it in anger. This is the heart-in-the-mouth time when all your hard work is really put to the test.

Prior to launch you have a (relatively short) period to ensure that everything is ready to go and the your project is in a fit state to be released. Leading up to the launch you’ll want to do some final testing and plan the release of the product into the live environment where it is to be used. A strong methodical process is important at this point so that you avoid any last minute hitches.

Next in the Hut A Project Management Primer:

Project Implementation – Acceptance Testing

Previously in the Hut A Project Management Primer:

Building a Team in Project Management

Nick Jenkins is an IT manager with 10 years experience in software development, project management and software testing. Read the Complete Article

Execution – The Myth of Task Completion

Execution – The Myth of Task Completion (#44 in the Hut A Project Management Primer)
By Nick Jenkins

The single biggest problem for a project during the execution phase of the project is staying on track. Despite all the best planning, having the best team and anticipating all the possible pitfalls projects have a knack of developing unforeseen problems.

There is a common falsehood about tasks which is promoted by project tools such as Microsoft Project. The myth is that tasks can be partially complete, i.e. a task can be 10% or 20% done.

If a task is thought of as a goal then the lie becomes obvious – either you have achieved your goal or you have not. It’s a black-and-white, binary proposition. If your goal is a vague and imprecise statement of intent, like “write some instructional documentation”, then it is complete the moment you start. As soon as you put pen to paper you have “written some instructional documentation”. Read the Complete Article

Change Management – Tracking Change

Change Management – Tracking Change (#43 in the Hut A Project Management Primer)
By Nick Jenkins

To make change management easy you need a simple method of tracking, evaluating and recording changes. This can be a simple database or log but in large projects it has evolved into an customised information system in its own right.

As such the system needs to be able to handle:

  • Logging requests for changes against products and documentation
  • Recording and managing the priority of a particular change
  • Logging the decision of a change management authority
  • Recording the method and implementation of change
  • Tracking implemented changes against a particular version of the product or document

The more structured a system the more secure the change control process, but obviously the more overhead. A balance must be struck between the enforcement of proper procedure and responsiveness of the system.

Change management systems are useful for managing everyone’s expectations too. Read the Complete Article

Change Management – Change Management Process

Change Management – Change Management Process (#42 in the Hut A Project Management Primer)
By Nick Jenkins

The basis of change management is to have a clear process which everyone understands. It need not be bureaucratic or cumbersome but it should be applied universally and without fear of favour.

The basic elements of a change process are:

  • What is under change control and what is excluded ?
  • How are changes requested ?
  • Who has the authority to approve or reject changes ?
  • How are decisions upon approval or rejection are documented and disseminated ?
  • How changes are implemented and their implementation recorded ?

The process should be widely understood and accepted and should be effective without being bureaucratic or prescriptive. It is important for the project team to be seen to be responsive to client needs and nothing can hurt this more than an overly-officious change control process. Change is inevitable in a project and while you need to control it you do not want to stifle it. Read the Complete Article

Recommended PM App

Recommended PM App

Categories