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Tips to Successful Project Methodology Implementation

Eric McConnell
July 23, 2010

Learn to accomplish your work on time

methodology implement tipsSuccessful project methodology implementation can be achieved if you know how to select a proper methodology that fits the needs of your project and how to put the chosen methodology in practice. No matter whether you follow a traditional 5-phase process (Initiate-Design-Build-Deploy-Closure), the main idea is that you should be able to apply solutions that give rapid measurable success.

A properly chosen and successfully implemented methodology will let you gain the following benefits:

  • Your project team clearly understands their primary project implementation jobs and the strategic goals of your project.
  • Costs and schedules are under control during every of the implementation phases.
  • Reduced complexity of your project work.
  • Saved time and money.
  • A faster return on your investment.
  • Best management practices

There are two basic tips to successful project methodology implementation, as follows below.

1. Select a Suitable Methodology

The first step is to define your project methodology requirements. You will need to think about what exactly you want to get from your example methodology for project management and planning, what the type of content it should contain, and in which way you intend to implement it.

For instance, your requirements for a project methodology might be as follows:

  • It should cover a complete life-cycle of your project
  • Every step in the project life-cycle should be described in depth
  • There should be a clear and unambiguous project methodology definition that describes how each step could be practically taken. Work templates would be helpful
  • It needs to follow worldwide project standards for phases
  • It should suit the type and size of your particular project
  • It should be flexible enough to let you customize each of the project life-cycle stages

When your have defined your project methodology requirements, your next step is to review how much other methodologies used currently by your organization are successful. Note that it is not necessary to re-invent the wheel if you have something that successfully works in-house. That is why you should look at project implementation methodologies used within the company, compare them to your specific requirements and then see if there is a good fit and whether improved stages can be accomplished.

If you have not found a good fit and project methodology implementation is still not defined, you can research a new methodology for your project, or just purchase a suitable PM toolkit. The Web will help you find a methodology example that fits your requirements. Remember that the best-fitting methodology may have an 80% fit, while the rest 20% will be customized to your specific needs and expectations.

If you failed purchasing a fitting project methodology sample, then there is one way remaining: you can try to develop your own example of work implementation and planning. Of course, such a way will be more time-consuming and much expensive than searching for a ready-to-use PM methodology; however, by following this way you will ultimately meet your project methodology requirements.

2. Put the selected methodology in practice

No matter whether you have developed your own methodology for your project or just purchased some project methodology sample, the next step is to introduce it into your organization. This step involves the following:

  • Design a work plan
  • Customize the selected PM methodology for each of the projects undertaken by your organization
  • Train your team to use the methodology and to follow its life cycle phases
  • Use project management software to control the development process
  • Work on constant improvement of the chosen the project planning and management methodology

By stepping through the listed actions, you are about to achieve the success from the very beginning of your project implementation phases. Project implementation jobs, tasks and processes will be completed faster and more easily because the team will know how to follow the methodology and because you have early established a foundation for better methodology implementation and evaluation.

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