The Pramis Methodology

The aim of this methodology is to reduce rework and promote earlier problem detection. At the same time, an improvement in the quality of the products produces important savings in the maintenance phase of a project, which means important savings for clients and an improved commercial image of the developer. Customer satisfaction should lead to increased sales. This methodology should be oriented toward the planning and control processes of systems and software development projects. Results would be the enhancement of the quality of the development processes of a particular company and, consequently, enhancement of its guarantee of conformance with the customer's requirements. This methodology also takes into account the ISO 9001 standard.

Over the years, this methodology has been used to deliver projects on time, on budget, and in a way that keeps clients satisfied. This methodology is very flexible, and although not all components of the methodology apply to all clients, as a framework for success, it is unrivaled. A typical process applied to a typical development project follows:

Phase 1: The discovery phase. Initial assessment of projects should be given as much consideration as any other stage of the project. While the client usually has a good idea of what he or she wants, it can take the consulting team a great deal of work to understand the internal project language and all the unsaid design goals. Corporate culture can be the enemy of a successful project because all those things you take for granted as "the way things are" may be unknown to your consultants, or subtly different from your end users' beliefs and experience. This model requests that the client agree to a small, fixed cost for discovery tasks. This phase culminates in a detailed requirements specification and more complete cost estimate. There are two distinct deliverables; first is the requirements and implementation plan. This makes no mention of cost and has value as a road map to the completed project. The second deliverable is a quote for the implementation of that plan; it includes the information the client needs to understand the cost and time involved in implementing the project. This is usually done on a short duration, fixed-cost basis, allowing the client and consultant to build a mutual understanding of the tasks and the capabilities of both teams.

Phase 2: The development phase. The development phase is typically where the bulk of the project time is spent. This phase implements the project plan developed in the discovery phase, up to the point that the application is feature-complete according to the initial specification, plus any mutually agreed-on changes that have been accepted by both the client and the consultant. This phase can be billed on a fixed-price or time-and-materials (T&M) basis. Billing method depends largely on how well-scoped and definitive the development effort can be.

Phase 3: Beta test and functional acceptance. This is the client's first real exposure to the application and will very likely produce change orders. Any misconceptions or omissions from the discovery phase will be most apparent here. Bugs will be found and must be handled. In this phase, projects that get into trouble really begin to show the signs of stress. To reduce the risk associated with this phase, you should agree that work done in this phase be handled on a T&M basis, but at a greatly reduced rate. The low rate produces a general feeling of goodwill, because the customer still recognizes a cost associated with the work, and the consulting organization is disincented from pushing work from Phase 2 to Phase 3.

Phase 4: Deployment and final acceptance. Rollout tends to be a fixed cost, one-time expense. Handling this correctly is critical and must be carefully planned. Additional support resources are often required during the rollout phase. A well-planned rollout phase with the right level of support and training can mean the difference between success and failure for the project in the long term. For most users of the finished project, the rollout phase is their first contact with the highly anticipated new tools. Documentation tends to be a fixed cost, but its scope should be clearly agreed on in advance. A predefined set of expectations must exist. The target audience is a critical consideration. Documentation meant for end users in a "How-to" format is vastly different from and does not replace the need for technical documentation on the structure and design of the deliverable.

Success is based on quickly assimilating each customer's technical and documentation standards, project procedures, construction processes, supplier requirements, contractual terms and conditions, and preferred contractors and equipment supplier agreements. In many situations, project consultants function as an extension of their client's staff and as an integral part of the project effort. In addition, these teams can add value to the project execution process based on experience, internal company procedures, and knowledge of industry standards. As part of this methodology, project managers must seek to meet your expectations through the use of key review and approval steps.

Project Management Made Easy

Project Management Made Easy

What you need to know about… Project Management Made Easy! Project management consists of more than just a large building project and can encompass small projects as well. No matter what the size of your project, you need to have some sort of project management. How you manage your project has everything to do with its outcome.

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