- Before starting any project, you should know what you are doing before you start. Ask your users, create focus groups and research every detail. By asking your users you will know what your users will need to do their jobs and what they are expecting. Focus groups will provide feed back of what direction you should be taking the project by telling you what they think will work or not work. Both users and focus groups should be used through out the project in order to keep the project on track. Lastly, research your project to ensure you have all of the information and regulations written down so that all can review, understand and agree. Know every bit of your project.
- After done your research and you have talked to the users, it is time to formalize a project plan. First outline all requirements of the projects so that all parties can understand. You should include charts, graphs and diagrams where applicable. Now, add to your formal project plan a break down the individual pieces into tasks, people resources and time to complete each task. By now you should really know what you need to complete the project
and it is time to list anything that need to complete the tasks outlines, concerns that you have for doing the project and any other special notes.
- Sit down with all stakeholders of the project including users and management and discuss the formal project plan. Ensure everyone understands the pan, what it will take to do the plan and that anything new will move the timeline out. Get management to sign-off on the plan indicating the understand and agree with everything.
- Do not stop using the users and focus groups, they will ensure you stay on task and that you are not going off on the wrong track. They will discover issues before the project is done. Do not get defensive when the discover issues.
- Follow-up with your people resources on a weekly basis to ensure that they are still on task. Encourage them to come to you sooner than later with issues.
- Test, Test, Test
- Deliver the final project to management and users by doing a proper presentation, training and sign-off sessions. Without proper training and presentations you will have user errors and a very busy support desk. If this is a contract project ensure that your company that you are working for know the terms of support and training. Sign-off sessions is just a indication that you are done as per your plan which was also signed off.