Project Management


Session Objectives

  • Review the basics of project management
  • Discuss obstacles to effective project management
  • Share practices that work for you
  • Empower you to try some new practices

What is project management?

  • Who, what, when, and why for projects
  • A defined and sponsored project scope
  • A roadmap for deliverables
  • Documented roles and responsibilities
  • A common language for communication relative to project phases, tracking and reporting
  • Processes to enable communication, accomplish the work, facilitate issue resolution and risk mitigation
  • Project management processes and tools help the project manager and team to organize, document, track and report on project tasks and progress



Basic Project Management:  Five Steps

The following steps comprise the project management roadmap.  The steps may overlap and be iterative:


2.Define and Confirm Scope/Requirements

3.Develop Plan and Secure Resources

4.Track, Control, Report and Review

5.Completion and Assessment

Communication, Risk and Issue Management, and Sponsor Management are essential throughout the project — both planned and spontaneous.

Step 1:  Startup

As you engage potential team members and stakeholders, project initiation activities establish the scope, goals and preliminary plan.

Key Activities

  • Document and/or confirm scope and assumptions
  • Confirm sponsorship and funding
  • Draft high level plan
  • Identify who needs to provide input into plan and resources

Checklists to consider

  • Project Startup and Sponsor
  • Templates to consider
  • Project Scope, Gantt Chart and Resource Planning
  • Project role descriptions

Step 2:  Confirm Scope and Define Requirements

Engage your sponsor and business stakeholders to confirm the project scope and clarify business requirements.  It is also the time to identify the technical requirements with the appropriate IS&T providers (as necessary).

Key Activities

  • Confirm baseline project scope with Sponsor
  • Define, document and confirm business and technical requirements
  • Identify impact on business processes
  • Identify what’s not in scope

Checklists to consider

  • Sponsor
  • Templates to consider
  • Project Scope

The baseline scope is needed to kickoff the project – refinements can be made later as necessary.

Step 3:  Develop Plan and Secure Resources

The initial detailed project plan will provide a project roadmap and baseline for all team members and stakeholders.  As the project evolves, the plan may need to refined.

  • Key Activities
  • Identify who needs to provide input into plan
  • Develop preliminary detailed plan based on scope, requirements, etc.
  • Identify skills sets needed to accomplish tasks
  • Develop communication plan
  • Identify and secure resources
  • Conduct pre-kickoff meeting with Sponsor
  • Conduct kick-off meeting
  • Conduct risk assessment with team members
  • Identify the criteria for stopping the project
  • Update detailed plan and get buy-in from team and Sponsor

The kick-off meeting should be a collaborative effort with your sponsor.

Step 3:  Develop Plan and Secure Resources (cont’d)

Checklists to consider

  • Project Planning
  • Deliverable and Quality Assurance
  • Transition

Templates to consider

  • Activity list
  • Detailed project plan
  • Project Resource Plan
  • Communication matrix
  • Project Risk Assessment

Step 4:  Track, Control, Reporting and Review

Once you kick off the project, the track, control, reporting and review activities will be iterative and comprise the bulk of the project management tasks.

Key Activities

  • Implement communication plan
  • Hold regular team meetings to:
  • Share progress/status
  • Identify/resolve issues
  • Hold formal sponsor updates
  • Keep your manager informed
  • Keep stakeholders informed
  • Monitor progress and report status
  • Monitor risks and take action as necessary
  • Identify and manage issues
  • Manage scope and track changes
  • Update plan as needed

Tracking the project will give you the information necessary to assess the health of the project, as well as give you the information for reporting status to the sponsors and stakeholders.

Step 4:  Track and Control, Report and Review (cont’d)

Checklists to Consider

  • Sponsor
  • Transition

Templates to Consider

  • Project scope change
  • Communication matrix
  • Project status snapshot
  • Detailed Project Plan
  • Risk Assessment
  • Issue Log

A quick review of the sponsor checklist may help you prepare for your sponsor and stakeholder update meetings.

Step 5: Completion and Assessment 

The following activities will help to ensure a smooth transition and leverage lessons learned for future projects.

Key Activities

  • Develop a cutover plan or checklist, if applicable
  • Complete documentation, training, and knowledge transfer
  • Conduct final project review
  • Conduct sponsor sign-off
  • Transition to support/service organization or next project team
  • Close-out final tasks and issues
  • Conduct lessons learned
  • Celebrate success

Accomplishing what the project set out to do is a success.

Step 5: Completion and Assessment  (cont’d)

Checklists to consider

  • Transition
  • Project Closeout

Templates to consider

  • Issue log
  • Detailed project plan
  • Communications Matrix

Basics of Project Management:  Common Obstacles

Common obstacles you may face include:

  • Unclear scope and business need
  • Uncommitted sponsor
  • Uncommitted resources
  • Other?

Basics of Project Management:  Going Forward

  • Establish goals that will enable you to build your project management skills
  • Start to incorporate steps into daily work
  • Continue to grow skills (e.g., courses, computer-based training
  • Seek guidance from experienced project managers through coaching, mentoring, user groups





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