Project management is essential for many reasons. It is a way of developing structure in a complicated project where the independent variables of resources, cost, human behavior and time come together. Project managers usually follow a particular methodology in order to complete difficult projects. They use different methods to complete various projects through trial and error.
A project management methodology assists organizations and project managers to find the best way to plan and execute projects in an effective manner. A project management methodology is similar to roadmap directions that people can use to navigate through complicated project successfully. The organizations project managers that use a systematic guide when managing the projects tend to do a better job. They are able to stay on budget, on time and on business need better than the ones who do not use such a guide. This means that using any kind of project management software is much better than not using any.
There are many options, management tools and schools of thought. Therefore, it can be challenging to know which project management methodology is right for you. Some of the most popular project management methodologies include the Critical Path Method, Waterfall, Agile, Kanban, Scrum, Six Sigma, Lean and Disciplined Agile Delivery. All these methodologies can be beneficial for an organization. However, selecting, training employees and implementing a new methodology is not easy. Therefore, take time to make sure that you choose the best fit for your organization. In order to choose the best project management methodology, you should do the following things:
Evaluate your project
As you select a project management methodology, you should determine exactly how the final deliverable should appear like and what you need to get it done. Concentrate on gathering the initial requirements. If these requirements suggest that you need a diverse and large team, choose a project management methodology which supports flexibility. If you have a good idea about what the end result will be, choose a more structured methodology like Waterfall. If you are unsure about the end result, choose an iterative methodology like such as Agile. The other factors to consider as you evaluate your project include timeline, project budget, stakeholder expectations, complexity and size.
Essentially, project management methodologies are a blueprint for completing projects. They tell project managers what to create and the right time to do it. However, in order for this to take place, your team must be ready to read the blueprint. If your team is not familiar with the project management methodology you have selected, you will find it challenging to achieve the desired outcome. Considering the composition of your team is also essential. Identify its weaknesses and strengths. If your team is able to collaborate easily, you can opt for a less structured methodology such as Agile. If your team is highly disciplined and motivated, you can go with a methodology like Scrum. If your resources are limited, choose a resource efficient approach such as CCPM. As you evaluate your team, consider its experience, self organization capabilities, training and location.
Evaluate your stakeholders
As you select a project management methodology, consider the involvement of stakeholders. Some methodologies require the stakeholders to be involved regularly at each stage of the project. For instance, when using Agile, you need the stakeholders to be readily available to provide feedback. If the stakeholders cannot do this, choose a methodology that does not require much involvement of stakeholders. Another factor to consider is stakeholder requirements. This includes how they work and what they require from the project manager. If your stakeholders usually change the project scope frequently, choose a methodology that is more flexible. Similarly, if your stakeholders require daily updates, choose a methodology, which can fit in with this demand.
Evaluate your company
The manner in which your company is organized, its past records and culture will have a significant impact on the project management methodology you can choose. Some methodologies are only ideal for use by large organizations that have established hierarchies. Others are suitable for smaller organizations. As you evaluate your company, consider its hierarchy, size, available resources, culture, experience with various methodologies and the level of flexibility.
Evaluate your tools
Project management tools are typically designed to function well with a particular methodology. Therefore, the software tools that you have access to and experienced with using will influence your choice. To achieve this, you should list all the software tools that you are currently using, list their capabilities and limitations, and then compare their capabilities with the requirements for a particular project management methodology. Ideally, you should select a methodology that works with your existing toolset.
There are quite a number of project management methodologies to select from. Each of them has its own strong and weak points. By choosing the right one, you will make your projects run smoothly, faster and more efficiently. It is also important to learn how to use various project management methodologies. Project managers can achieve this by enrolling in project management professional training.