Software Project Delivery - 7 Common Pitfalls

Software Delivery Pitfalls

Overview

There is much more to know about project management than one can learn from books, training, and certifications.  Some knowledge is acquired through real world experience.  In this blog entry we discuss 7 common project pitfalls that software delivery project managers can experience.

Project Portfolio Management – Manage the Funnel

Project Portfolio Management - Manage the Funnel

PPM - Funnel Overview

Executive leadership teams are frequently overwhelmed by the volume of implementation requests that demand satisfaction.  Adding to this complexity is that project requests can come from both formal and informal request channels.  Who hasn’t received project requests via email, brief mentions in meetings, or worse, during hallway conversations?

Top 4 Tips for Managing Resource Allocation

The Problem

Let’s face it our business partners have to deliver more and more competitive products and services and in this day and age most of their initiatives require a technology effort to be successful.  The CIO and his/her management team need to field these requests and figure out how to implement them  without the ability to expand their delivery teams.  The pace of business moves too fast these days to have requests come in from email, untethered requests made directly to technology teams, or conversations in the hallway.

The Top 5 Reasons PMOs Fail - and how to avoid them

PMO-success-failure

The journey towards enhanced project delivery frequently begins with the implementation of a program management office (PMO). Unfortunately these efforts frequently come up short. The reason a PMO implementation frequently fails has nothing to do with process or technology issues. Frequently management sets up a small budget, hires a PMO manager and says “straighten things out”.

In the end this PMO manager has been unknowingly setup for failure. In this blog post we explore some common reasons PMO implementations fail and how to avoid making those mistakes.

Project Management – Evolve or Die!

Socially Enabled PMO
“If you do not change direction, you may end up where you are heading.” - Lao Tzu

Portfolios, Projects, Tasks; What's the difference?

Overview

Surprisingly enough, one of the most common questions heard when an organization first starts out to implement some Project Management improvements is “What is a project?” and “What is a portfolio?”.  At first these might seem like a very simple question, but when one delves into what is really being asked the question becomes a lot more interesting.  Frequently the person asking the question is really asking “What qualifies as a project vs. what qualifies as an ‘Activity’ or ‘Task’?” and “Will I have more than one project portfolio?”.

Do you understand the project's "true objective"?

Building toward project success

True Story – Misunderstood Objectives

The background

Several years ago I was working for a consulting company that was hungry for revenue.  The exhaustive efforts of our sales team turned up a government project.  It turns out that the agency had a problem with keeping track of all its websites, content and site media.  They did not know what servers where delivering content to what sites and this was creating a major problem when content needed to be updated or removed.

References; a formality, or something to think about?

employment-references

So you have decided that it’s time for a career change.  You’ve done the resume thing, utilized the contacts in your professional and personal network, gone on interviews and now it looks like you are going to get an offer for your dream job.  Time to pop the champagne, right? Wrong.  Often times there is a “final step” that most us see as a formality, the reference check.

Project Management Offices on a Shoestring

PMO-light-increasing-productivity

There are a multitude of project and project portfolio management tools available on the market today.  For organizations with a limited number of projects, a limited resource pool, and/or a limited budget, a "PMO Light" approach can work well.

Here are just two examples of how PMO Light can be implemented:

Project Staffing – Got the right team? Work hard to keep them.

Retaining key staff

Welcome 2014!  Everything changes over time, but one thing that will most likely not change in 2014 is a business’s desire to grow top line revenue while keeping expenditures low.

At the same time employees are looking to grow their career, increase job satisfaction, and increase their income.  I guarantee if you were to get an honest answer from your staff about their New Year’s resolutions at least half of them would include some kind of career aspirations. 

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