Do you have a big project coming up in your company? If so, you have a lot of work ahead of you. It isn’t easy to manage a project and see it to completion.
Believe it or not, an average of 50% of projects don’t see success when they aren’t appropriately managed.
If you’re starting a new project, having a solid project management plan is essential to the process. Follow the steps below to create a plan that works.
Collect the Requirements
The first step of the project management process is collecting requirements for your new project. This step involves interviewing and meeting with key stakeholders to learn what they want the project to accomplish.
During the stakeholder interviews, you’ll collect information so that you can build a plan that meets their needs. You’ll also develop a schedule to give your stakeholders a timeline on project delivery.
You might not have your whole team yet, so not everyone can be involved. However, try to invite as many people currently on your project team as you can to the meetings so they can ask questions that get more information.
Find the Right People
Now that you have all your requirements, you can focus on finding the right people for the job. Smart people on a project are the key to success, so assigning team roles to these people is essential.
Start by checking with your employees to gauge what skills they have. Look through your project at your tasks and match people up based on their skill level.
You can also use your project to train junior team members on new skills. Pair them up with an experienced team member and let them learn from the experts. They’ll contribute to the project and become a more valuable employee in the long run.
It also pays to figure out what roles for projects you’ll outsource early. There are a lot of options out there, so check it out.
Once you complete the interviews and have everyone on board, it’s time to determine the project milestones.
A milestone is something that you want to accomplish by a specific date. For example, if you’re developing a new website for your business, the project milestone would be when the site is fully functional.
The milestones should be clearly defined and measurable. Each milestone will be a goalpost for your team. Instead of trying to have your project launched at a specific date, you can take small victories along the way to encourage your team to keep productive.
Get Your Project Management Software Ready
While it’s essential to have a grasp on your project management plan, you’ll need to get your software tools ready if you want your project to see success. Project management software will help you assign tasks, track your team’s schedule, and give your team notification for deadlines.
Modern project management programs also are located in the cloud. This means that you can access them from any device you have.
Doing things in the cloud means your team can work from anywhere that has an internet connection. All they have to do is log into the project management portal to see what tasks they have, get vital communication, and talk with the rest of the team.
Sometimes your project can feel like a black hole. It sucks in all your time and makes it disappear. When you’re developing your project management plan, be sure to include deadlines to limit the amount of time spent on a task.
Setting a deadline will ensure that your team doesn’t get bogged down in any one activity for too long. The project management software you use can help you track how much time your team spends on each task and which tasks fall behind schedule.
Keep in mind, though, that your deadlines aren’t milestone-specific. You can make them for small tasks that contribute to specific milestones. Doing this ensures that your team leaves no job undone, and you make steady progress every step of the way.
Set a Meeting Schedule
As you can imagine, a project management plan requires many meetings to keep everyone on track. Once your team is set, set up regular meetings and breaks throughout the project.
Regular team meetings will allow you to communicate with your team to get updates on how every part of the project is progressing. This helps you to understand where they’re spending their time and ensure that no task is falling behind schedule.
Of course, you don’t want to interrupt your team at random times. Let your team know ahead of time what your meeting schedule is. Keep to those times and avoid interrupting your team while they’re doing work.
After the project plan is established, it’s time to track progress. The most important part of this process is keeping your team on task and providing them with the tools they need to complete their tasks.
Your project management software will provide you everything you need to handle this step. You can use these tools to monitor all activity on your project and make sure that nothing falls through the cracks.
If you see part of your project falling behind, get in touch with the people responsible. See if there are any problems and if there is anything you can do to help.
Now You Know How to Create a Project Management Plan
You can’t afford to take a haphazard approach when creating a new project in your company. Coming up with a proper project management plan doesn’t only take the stress off your shoulders, but it will also improve your chances of success. Use the steps above to create a plan that will lead you to success.
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