Moving Companies Forward

Project Management

Projects are defined by a set of objectives, tasks, and activities that have a beginning point and a closure point.  Successful projects need both a Plan and a Schedule.  The Plan tells you the objectives of the project, the scope of the project, the approach to be used; what deliverables are needed, who will work the project, and how much the project will cost. The schedule defines the tasks and activities for the project; the order, duration, start date, and completion date for each task; and who will work each task.  If you are running your own projects, please don’t skim on the planning — generate both documents.

“Strategy without tactics is the slowest route to victory. Tactics without strategy is the noise before defeat.” (Sun Tzu).

DCLC has ample experience with the development of project plans (scope, objectives, staffing, costing, milestones, schedule, etc), coordinating the plan with stakeholders, obtaining access to the resources and funding, conducting a kickoff event to start the project; monitoring and controlling the project; accomplishing course correction as needed to get the job done; and then bringing the work to closure.  Our approach includes best practices from the Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK) and the Capability Maturity Model Integration (CMMI).

Typical Project Management Services

  • Accomplish strategic analysis; identify the critical path in your contract execution life cycle or your system development life cycle
  • Strengthen your portfolio management and the oversight of your project managers though careful attention to scope, cost, resource utilization, quality, and schedule attributes of each project
  • Deliver comprehensive training to empower your project managers, proposal managers, or IV&V leadership
  • Organize, plan, mobilize, and accomplish projects for your organization with your personnel

Project Management Best Practices

DCLC uses the proven methods and processes to implement our project management methodology.  Careful blending of resources, tools, and processes set a solid framework to execute and manage successful projects.  I know through experience that poor project management can easily destroy even the strongest plan leading to budget overruns, schedule slippage, and user dissatisfaction.  I have learned to avoid the common mistakes made when a project is managed using reactive decision making rather than proactive decisions.  By aggressive control over team activities, are able to ‘see’ the next step, and make sure ‘course corrections’ occur before problems occur, rather than after the problems have arrived.

Furthermore, I understand that how the aggressive use of process provides stability in an environment of constantly changing priorities.  The processes I use promote a smooth transition when priorities suddenly change.  Our processes have built-in flexibility.

Project Management Methodology

I will direct the organization and progress of projects, and monitor the status of development until a product is delivered and installed. The principal responsibilities are:

Initiate the project

  • Coordinate the plan with sponsor, secure permission to proceed with project plan and schedule, secure resources for project, secure funding, generate and coordinate the Communication Plan

Plan the project

  • Accomplish requirements assessment, scope definition, life cycle model selection, activity definition, activity sequencing, time estimating, work plan development, schedule development, then assess project risk and mitigation
  • Accomplish resource planning, cost estimating, cost budgeting, quality and communications planning, and project change control procedures
  • Develop and coordinate the project plan / schedule with the sponsor, project board and appropriate resources and host kickoff meeting to initiate the project

Execute, monitor, and control the project

  • Monitor resource activities in accordance with schedule, monitor cost consumption, quality of work, performance, risk, monitor scope of project, coordinate project changes, enforce life cycle for deliverables and product

Close the project

  • Deliver product, document lessons learned, Host closure meeting, and archive all project documents

This very high level discussion on Project Management Methodology.  It does not present every task accomplished but it does provide a framework for the tasks accomplished during the course of a project.  Studies prove that most projects, especially large ones, do not end successfully.  Given the odds, you might think that companies would be happy to just have their project finish with some degree of success.  However, in spite of the odds, organizations also expect projects to be completed faster, cheaper, and with higher quality.  The only way to meet these objectives is through effective project management processes.  I consider the size, complexity, and other characteristics of your project, and ‘right size’ our project management processes to effectively manage and control your project.

There’s a common saying among project managers: plan the work and work the plan.  This is a keynote expression of DCLC project management.  When the work is completed, I close out the project releasing the resources and archiving the project artifacts.

The table below provides a summary of the project controls typically implemented for a project.

 

Project Management Controls

Project Management ControlsInitiatePlanExecuteControl, Measure, & ImproveClosure
Project PlanDevelop draft objectives, Scope, and select Life Cycle approachDevelop Project Plan and ScheduleDirect Project ExecutionCollect metrics, Accomplish Course CorrectionClose project, develop lessons learned
Scope ManagementDevelop draft WBSRefine scope,create WBS
Manage scope &WBSManage scope & WBSArchive project history
Schedule managementDevelop draft milestones and ScheduleRefine the milestones and scheduleMaintain schedule complianceOversee cost, quality, and resource accessArchive schedule
Cost ManagementIdentify pricing strategyEstimate cost
develop Budget
Control Cost Cost variance oversight and adjustmentsArchive costing Documents
Quality ManagementDiscuss quality goals with team and stakeholdersQuality PlanningQuality reviews and improvementsQuality reports, process improvement, rework, and training requirements as neededArchive quality management documentation
Human Resource ManagementAccomplish resource PlanningAcquire resourcesManage team resourcesGenerate Status reports, replace or train staff as neededArchive staffing histories
Communication ManagementDevelop Communications PlanDistribute informationPerformance reporting and stakeholder integrationGenerate Status reports, adapt communications as neededArchive communications documentation
Risk / Issue ManagementRisk planning, risk identification and analysisImplement risk controls, mitigation, and contingenciesControl risk with mitigation and contingenciesControl risk with mitigation and contingenciesArchive risk documentation
Subcontractor ManagementTeam member selection and approvalPlan purchases and subcontractsOversee subcontractsManage, collect metrics and adjust subcontracts as neededArchive subcontract documents &end the contract