6 Major Factors Affecting Project Management Success in your Organisation

Many factors are affecting the success or failure of an application implementation-related project. A talented project manager is one of the key contributors.

Many fundamental steps and guides in the project management processes are taken for granted because they seem very basic and obvious. This includes better and more factual testing methods, communication processes and protocols, and the role of key staff members and project manager. This results in many problems like

  • Delays in execution that result in missed deadlines
  • Uncertainty about the exact deliverables and expectations
  • Confusion about the direction of the execution, work requirements, and project status
  • Dissatisfaction in the client due to the quality of deliverables.

Very broadly, the key to finding success in your projects and business is vigilant management and a strong project closing. Let’s evaluate the internal factors affecting project management and implementation, and the different steps that help you achieve success in.

1. Get a Solid Contract with Your Software Provider

Words change every day, but contracts don’t. Don’t go for a verbal contract, get the deal in writing. There are a number of details you need to work out in your contract with your vendor, and also ensure their implementation in all future contracts. This includes

  • Your payment schedule
  • An outline of the system performance criteria
  • Penalties for performance issues and delays in delivery
  • All the documents required
  • The necessary training and orientation
  • Inclusion of a test system and a training system for professionals
  • A comfortable turnaround time and escalation policy
  • Any support you may need from the vendor while the application or project goes live

2. The Right Smart People for the Job

Without the right kind of people for the job in the right positions, even the best project will fizzle out. To make sure your application project meets its full potential, all stakeholders and experts should be a part of the dynamic process. Make sure your team has the following:

  1. Project sponsor
  2. Leadership committee
  3. Project team
  4. Project manager

Inadequate support and resources can hamper your capabilities as a project manager to a great extent. It is important for the success of your project that you assign the right person for the right task.

3. Have a Plan of Action

Make sure you set processes and protocols for all possible situations. It is very easy for the work process to stop because of uncertainty regarding how to proceed. Putting protocols in place smoothes out any lumps in the system, so you also have to ensure that all your resources and team members are aligned to it. These protocols should include

  • A process for changes that impact scope, budget, deadlines or resources of the project
  • A process for escalations
  • Schedule management protocols
  • Communication and hierarchy protocols

4. Define the Scope of the Project

Often there is a tendency for the scope of work to be increased at the last minute. This puts undue pressure on you because it means delivering something you neither promised nor prepared for. Write out the exact expectations for your project every time. This includes

  • All assumptions and deliverables
  • Quantify all requirements that are discussed. In case anything is yet to be discussed, make sure it is done before you start working on the project.
  • Include all dates for WIPs, progress reports, and the final delivery date. Don’t leave any dates ambiguous.
  • Have all members of the team aligned to the scope and get it approved by all sponsors and stakeholders before initiating work on it.

5. Proper Testing and Risk Management

Project managers need to be aware of all the things that could possibly go wrong and prepare for them. You also need to know exactly how the project is coming along and fix any hiccups immediately. For this, you should
i) document the kind of testing you will need (data flows, data conversion etc)
ii) test things that are standard operations and also things where malfunctions occur infrequently
iii) use staff members who are familiar with the project objective for user testing
iv) keep a buffer time to fix errors and glitches that may creep in.

6. Ensure Strong Project Closure

If the project handover and closure do not take place strongly, it might continue to consume your resources and time. Both parties must be in agreement at the same time when the sign-off happens. As a project manager, you lead the sign-off on behalf of your organisation. During project closure, you need to ensure

  • Both parties agree that all terms and conditions of the contract were followed
  • All deliverables have been met and timelines have been followed
  • All schedules regarding payment and delivery have been followed till the last step and all dues in terms of payment/ deliverables have been made
  • All quality standards have been met and there are no discrepancies on either.

Become a certified project manager today and take charge of the next big project in your organisation.