PM Cycle Vs. Software Development Cycle

This morning I had a meeting with some analysts in order to review some requirements sent by a client.

This client wants an application that allows them to control all the life cycle of the projects they manage in their company.

Talking about our PM Framework and doing an overview of it I noticed that these guys where looking at the pages with an strange face. After a while I asked, what’s wrong with this? could I help you with something?

One of them said that he doesn’t found where are the different technical documents or templates, such test scripts, that they have to manage in the development of an application.

Then I told, Ok you then talk about all the documents you work in the different phases of the “Software Development Cycle”. An you want to make them mandatory in this new application when your client manages the project in the application, isn’t it?

(their face)

Ok, you need that your client clarifies you if they want to manage Project Management cycle or Software Development Cycle.

All Conditions changes (financial for instance)

Working on Projects with financial complexity is being harder with the financial crisis.

If you were thinking that financial constrains are fixed, you are wrong. At least for me they are not. Even the big agreements are being revised.

I have more work to do, but really risk control and financial departments are the ones who are dealing with it.

Adversity means opportunity, isn’t it?. The number of transition projects have increased a lot. In addition the number of PMOs requests is growing up too.

Performing Project Tailoring

You have just received a new potential project and you start working with it. You have business requirements, backgrounds, a brief list of some stakeholders and a lot of questions.

As not all projects are the same thing, the project tailoring is the process that will allow you to identify the category of the project, evaluate the dimension of the project and get a better perception of the scope of the ‘whole’.
As many of the activities in project management, tailoring has to be repeated several times till you reach a good level of confidence.
The determination of the category (small, medium, large) depends of the hours, team size, complexity, capital expenditure… We have specific rules to categorize a project based on all this information and it’s very useful because it helps you evaluate it easily.
We also evaluate the importance of the POLDAT variables in the project in order to clarify the complexity of the work.
After all this evaluation we can define the work products associated with the project and the framework that we will deliver.

The purpose of tailoring is not to tailor some of the procedures that you have on your project framework, it’s to tailor the work products that you would follow on the relevant procedures.
As always, this project tailoring needs to be approved.

ITIL Foundations v3

This week I have assisted to a training about ITIL foundations.
The session started as a bored teorical training session about a framework, and taking into account that all the concepts were known by me, the first hours were hard.
I was sitted with a colleague that also know CMMI so we were all the session relating ITIL naming convention with CMMI concepts. It was better…
After that we were reviewing how each one has in our services implemented different practices and the reason to achieve them (the business contrains), so this real cases were so so useful as learned lesson.
Some basic conclusions:

  • CMMI is an organizational framework that can cover all aspects of a business. ITIL is focused on IT Processes for Service Delivery Processes.
  • As ITIL is not a driven tool as CMMI, there are not stages as in CMMI that allows you to clasify companies by level of achievement of that framework.
  • But these tools are really long term frameworks that talk about the maturity of the processes in a company. How to arrive to this maturity stages easily? You need other tools as Six Sigma, Kaizen… that provide you an increase in quality aspects.

Please, let me know if I’m wrong.