Archive for February, 2010

The Vital Pillar of Project Management

Anyone learn a bit about project management knows the three PM pillars/constraints are Scope, cost & time. All 3 needs focus to have any kind of project success, but there are priorities.

What is a PM’s most concerning constraint between Scope, Cost & Time?
     Most people will say $$$
That’s what I thought too … until I took my strategic project management class.
     In fact the key constraint is TIME.



Which would you choice?:

An experience developer that takes 5 weeks for $15000
vs
An decent developer that that takes 8 weeks for $10000

Rationally, it might seem the latter would be the right choice (the other cost 50% more).
But if you consider the project becomes delayed for 2-3 weeks, It will cost for the project way more when you have to pay everyone for 2-3 more weeks. That’s why, a week or 2 of delays in time could push the budget overboard.

Time isn’t just about time, it directly affects cost too.
   So in most cases, a project manager should prioritize “on Time” > “on Budget”.

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Follow-up: Making Sure it’s Done

Follow-up is a basic work skill not everyone has or will learn. When you work in IT for any mid-large company, you are guarantee to work with several layers between the developer and the business users. At this point, getting a task done get troublesome.

Example: Such as getting a developer access to the server.

The task takes at most 5 minutes, the approval & the process takes a dozen days … or forever. It’s not that we need it this second, but such request taking 2 weeks is unacceptable. Although the task/request might of been dropped somewhere within the business process. To make sure things like this doesn’t happen, you got to follow-up.


My Follow-up Tactics:
Sometimes you can’t assume things would just get done, so you got to follow-up.
At first you can give the benefit of the doubt, request gets done.

To make sure requests/tasks gets done, here are my step to follow-up:
1st Follow-up: The request can be left hanging around. This is to make sure the request is initiated.

2nd Follow-up: It’s on someone’s list, but priority is lower. Making sure the request has an estimate completion time, at this point you should give them time to work on the request (amongst other priority)

3rd Follow-up: It on someone’s list, but priority changes & the task get forgotten
At about 50-75% time has gone, double check if the completion is delayed or not.
The purpose of this is to make sure the request is in progress & not dropped due other requests; if it’s dropped, it will them give enough time to complete the task with minimal delay.

4th Follow-up: It needs more time, but no one was notified … this is the point where the project schedule gets delay.At this point, you are annoying the person … so you got to be tactful.


The 1st & 2nd follow-up is need for most cases, in order to make sure the task is clarify with a specified end-time.

I usually won’t use the full tactics if it’s someone I had never worked with before; This method is used only if the colleague is unmotivated or they have too many different priorities … That’s why you follow-up with them & let them set an their end-date.

Soft Side of IT is Coming Back

The return to Soft Side of IT!

From working on more projects, these posts will be about my experience and thoughts working in It & with technology.

Especially on a ERP systems implementation project in 2010 that I am in. With 15 month of being in this project, there are tons that I have seen. So I want to document some of my lesson learned; that’s why I have decided to start posting this blog again.

For now, I am going to posting once every 2 weeks.

I hope you learn as much as I will from this experience.
Enjoy,
Ian


Side Note:
For people who wondered what I was up to on my hiatus … in the last 6 month, I have posting at Teach … Lead … Careering. The site was to apply teaching skills to the business world.

Go ahead & check it out.