Project Management

Summary: Optimation offers IT project management services. We outline the process we use to ensure we deliver value, and take a look at how the project management landscape is changing in Australia.

Introduction

Project managers carefully plan, execute, monitor, control and close a project to ensure objectives are met. They also manage the resources, budget, risk, schedule and stakeholders in and around the project. Projects are temporary and have a finite timeframe, as opposed to BAU operations, which are a continuous process.

While each IT Project, the project management engagement is unique, clients can depend on good IT Project Managers to manage risk, budget, resources, schedule and acceptance of quality criteria for the specific project, regardless of size and scope. Project management allows clients to focus on what they know best - their business!

The Project Management Process

When it comes to project management methodologies, we employ a system called the Optimation Way. The steps are illustrated by the following diagram centering around five main concepts: 

  1. Pre-project
  2. Initiate
  3. Monitor & Control
  4. Learn & Close
  5. Deliverables 

Project management diagram

Specialised Aspects of IT Project Management

There are specialties within project management, such as infrastructure project management and software development project management, however the techniques of good project management are similar. They involve a deep understanding of the requirements and challenges involved for each specific project.

There are also sub-disciplines such as; BI project management, software support transitions, ERP based implementations, upgrades and bespoke SDLC. Infrastructure project management can be based around communications projects, hardware upgrades, cloud implementations and data centre upgrades or moves.

Emerging Trends in Project Management

Project management responds to the emerging trends in the IT sector as a whole. The key trends today include cloud based technologies, big data, and mobile. Project managers will need to be aware of how to resource these projects in terms of the skills needed, the planning required and estimating costs.

One of the main challenges in dealing with these new trends are the limited skills and resources available and also the additional thought that needs to go planning. For example, project managers now have to plan for responsive User interface design (UI) or user interface engineering, whereas this wasn’t a key consideration a few years ago. Mitigations such as partnering with specialist companies to provide some of these limited resources; which involves managing contracts, deliverables and quality externally, as well as internally.

Agile Project Management

Agile Project Management has been around for some time but is rapidly gaining momentum and favour within New Zealand. Agile is characterised by its highly flexible and iterative approach to the betterment of product and service delivery, along with being very interactive. There is now a level of maturity around the Agile methodologies as clients are integrating this process into their businesses processes. Scrum is a particularly popular Agile methodology.

While some view Agile as a silver bullet, a good project manager needs to be alert and ready to adapt. One of the great benefits of Agile is that it allows rapid change more readily than traditional waterfall approaches. This can lead the unwary away from original objectives and quality criteria if the project manager doesn’t pay close attention.

If you would like to discuss your project management requirements, please get in touch.

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