5.0 Managing Projects (Part 2) – Quality & Information

Quality #

The project’s outcome must meet a variety of quality criteria. This also applies to the project’s numerous intermediary deliverables. When managing a project, it is critical to establish, agree on, and document quality criteria at the definition phase. These criteria must never be left unstated. At the conclusion of the implementation process, a comprehensive list of requirements may be compared. This enables the project team to demonstrate that they adhered to the project’s requirements. Additional quality criteria may be set for certain project activities. For instance, a certain job may be performed exclusively by certified people.

Superiority in project planning: 

  • Define the required level of quality for the project’s end outcome and intermediate goods (this takes place primarily in the definition phase).
  • Define the required level of quality in the execution of the project’s different operations.

Monitoring of development in terms of quality:

  • Validate the (intermediate) outcomes.
  • Address any issues with quality.
  • Confirm that the required level of quality has been achieved in project reporting,
  • Address any grievances (particularly in the follow-up phase).

Project management is harmed by perfectionism. A pragmatic approach regarding a project’s quality standards may be summarized as ‘Fine enough is good.’ Initiatives that attempts to attain the greatest possible degree of quality are often doomed to failure.

Organization #

The team must be controlled inside a project. In the simplest terms, team management is selecting who will do which tasks from a list of possible tasks. Additionally, it encompasses all of the soft skills (e.g. motivational methods, communication abilities, and leadership styles) required to accomplish a task with a group of individuals. Regardless of their significance, the scope of this guide does not include these soft skills.

Organizational structure in project plans:

  • Form the Team.
  • Delegate power to team members;
  • Assign responsibilities to team members.
  • Agree on personnel availability with other (project) managers and upper management.

 Monitoring the organization’s progress:

  • Supervise the team.
  • Keep an eye on human factors (soft skills).
  • Act as a liaison between the project’s stakeholders.

Information #

The information component pertains to the manner in which, by whom, and on what basis choices may be made. Who has the authority to make decisions about certain aspects of the project? Is it the project manager, the client, or a team member with substantial expertise? What and who will be archived? Will tools (for example, a project website, an issue tracker, e-mail notifications, and a shared agenda) be used? These and other informative inquiries must be addressed prior to starting a project. Organizations that work on projects on a regular basis have a variety of tools (e.g., Word templates) for managing information inside a project.

 Project plans include the following information:

  • To whom and in what format must information be provided?
  • What data will be collected, disseminated, and archived?
  • How will information technology be utilized?

Monitoring of information in progress:

  • Schedule periodic consultations.
  • Ensure that the appropriate information is communicated to the appropriate individual.
  • Ascertain compliance with agreements.
  • Prepare the project report.
  • A list of issues
  • Log of risks
  • Minutes of meetings

The problem list enumerates every topic that must be addressed. This list should be addressed on a frequent basis. A model for an action and decision list has been provided to assist in tracking progress and documenting choices made. A risk log has been added to assist in documenting hazards discovered throughout the course of a project.

These risks must then be addressed and, if required, removed during the project team’s next meeting. Finally, a sample meeting report has been provided to demonstrate how this kind of report should be prepared and archived. Appendix 3 provides a list of useful third-party utilities.

A critical element of protecting project information is that all choices should be repeatable. Decisions are often made verbally and are not recorded. Regardless of how obvious such choices seem to both parties at the moment, they must ultimately be documented. If this cannot be accomplished, the unrecorded choice may become a cause of confusion or even conflict.

Numerous initiatives are delayed due to external interventions (e.g., ‘this is even more critical’, ‘this is more politically correct’, ‘the client wants us to work on something else first’). Maintaining a personal diary for this kind of action may assist project managers in determining the reason for project delays.