Author Archives: Alvin

PMO Forms Guide – Project Charter

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Names Used
Project Charter, Charter, Statement of Work, SOW, Business Case

Description
Authorizes resources for the Project as defined in the Charter and in the specified time frame. The Charter also provides documentation on the analysis done to ensure the soundness of the project. The fields you need highly depends on your processes and organization. Some of these fields can also be pulled from your initial Project Proposal or Business Case.

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Building a PMO or Project Schedule Template

Your project schedule is one of the most critical pieces of a sound project and creating a standard template structure will provide a consistency through all your PMO projects. There are two main directions you can take when structuring a project schedule. The first is by functional role and the second by product deliverable. My preference is by deliverable as it keeps the focus on the end result. Below I'll explain the differences and why I choose one over the other.  Continue reading

Core Responsibilities of the PMO

Building PMO responsibility can vary greatly depending on who you ask. In my career I have had the opportunity to setup a few Project Offices. The first we won't talk about, the second and third turned out very well. I am sharing some of the key routines I used below: Continue reading

Five Questions in Determining Project Approach

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Project Approach is also sometimes called your project strategy or strategic approach. It also matters more for larger projects or programs. An easy way to think of your approach is your collection of life cycles you will use for the project or program.

When deciding what approach to take on a project there are some key questions you always want to ask in helping you decide what methodology to use for your project. For more complex projects you could find yourself with multiple parallel deliverables which could each use a different approach. One deliverable could use a straight waterfall approach, while another deliverable will need an iterative approach to handle less than complete requirements.

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Five Project Cost Fields to Keep on Budget

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Project costing can be one of the activities that can easily run away from you if not managed and controlled well. It is one of those areas that can be tough as you are dealing with assumptions to ensure your project will stay in budget and it is something that can get complicated for large projects. For this article I will talk about five common fields you should track (for each Expense item) to ensure the costs do not overwhelm your project. The fields are Budgeted Amount, Actual Cost, Cost to Completion, Cost at Completion, and Variance to Budget.

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Ten Fallacies Found in Project Management

santamonicadoor150Projects inherently involve a lot of communication from a lot of people with a lot of different backgrounds. This type of environment provides a breeding ground for fallacies which results in poor decisions that ultimately hurt the success of the project. Below is a list of ten common fallacies you will see in projects. The list is a subset of what I found in Wikipedia with my thoughts added at the end each definition. Continue reading

Why Quality is Critical to the Project Triangle

palmspringschairs640x80Most project managers have heard of the Project Triangle. It is the scope, cost, and time of a project. It is the three lines of the triangle that the project manager is always monitoring and controlling to make sure a successful project. Continue reading

The Pros of SharePoint for Project Management

strawberries150While browsing through the Girl's Guide to Project Management (found here) I came across a case study on using SharePoint for Project Management. Having used SharePoint for Project Management I thought this would be a good blog where I could elaborate on the case study. Continue reading

The Right Level of Detail in Project Management

phoneboothjapan150The level of detail that a project manager should be involved in a project should not be static. As the project progresses the amount of oversight needed fluctuates and the project manager needs to adapt if they want to make best use of the resources available. For a project manager who does manage at one detail level you have two extremes. Continue reading

Keeping Project Deliverables on Track

santamonicawheel640x80 When people are unable to agree on a project deliverable, like requirements or a statement of work, there are a few tricks you can do to ensure these deliverables are completed on time. Continue reading