The activities in this step ensure that all the parties to the project agree on the objectives and are committed to the success of the project. A danger to be avoided is overlooking people who are affected by the project.
Step 1.1: Identify objectives and practical measures of the effectiveness in meeting those objectives
We discussed earlier the need for agreed objectives for a project and ways of measuring the success in achieving those objectives.
The project objectives for the Brightmouth College payroll project have already Case Study Example: been discussed in Exercise 1.7. Project objectives
Amanda at IOE has the objectives clearly laid down for her in the recommendations of a feasibility study report, which have been accepted by IOE management. The main objectives are to allow a detailed monthly statement to be sent to group account clients and to be able to reallocate the cash received to individual jobs when the client has paid on the monthly statement. There are also other objectives that refer to expected timescales and the resources that may be used.
Step 7.2; Establish a project authority
A single overall project authority needs to be established so that there is unity of purpose among all those concerned.
Amanda finds that her manager and the main user management have already set up a Project Board that will have overall direction of the project. She is a little concerned because the equipment maintenance staff are organized with different sections dealing with different types of equipment. This means that a customer might have work done by several different sections. Not all the sections are represented on the Project Board and Amanda is aware that there are some differences of opinion among the different sections. It is left to the user representatives on the board to resolve those differences and to present an agreed policy to the systems developers.
Brigette finds that effectively she has two different clients for the payroll system: the finance and personnel departments. To help resolve conflicts, it is agreed that the managers of both departments should attend a monthly meeting with the Vice-Principal, which Brigette has arranged in order to steer the project.
Case Study Examples: Project authorities
Throughout the text we use capitalized initial letters to indicate a term that has a precise meaning in the PRINCE 2 standards, e.g. Project Board.
Step 1.3: Identify all stakeholders in the project and their interests
Recall that this was the basis of a discussion in Chapter 1. Essentially all the parties who have an interest in the project need to be identified. In Exercise 1.8 you produced a list of the stakeholders in the Brightmouth College Payroll project.
What important stakeholders outside the IOE organization should be considered Exercise 2.1 in the case of the IOE Maintenance Group Accounts System?
Step 1.4: Modify objectives in the light of stakeholder analysis
In order to gain the full cooperation of all concerned, it might be necessary to modify the project objectives. This can mean adding new features to the system giving a benefit to some stakeholder group as a means of assuring their commitment to the project. This is potentially dangerous, since the system size might be increased and the original objectives obscured. Because of these dangers, this process must be done consciously and in a controlled manner.
Case Study Examples: The IOE maintenance staff are to be given the extra task of entering data about Modified project completed jobs. They do not benefit from this additional work. To give some objectives benefit, the system is to be extended to reorder spare parts automatically when required.
At Brightmouth College, the personnel department has a lot of work preparing payroll details for finance. It will be tactful to agree to produce some management information reports for personnel from the payroll details held on the computer.
Step 1.5: Establish methods of communication with all parties
For internal staff, this should be fairly straightforward, but a project leader implementing a payroll system would need to find a contact point with BACS (Bankers Automated Clearing Scheme) for instance.
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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.