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Do you know according to a survey by Wrike, only 64% of the projects meet their respective goals. Yes! And, poor website development project management practices is one of the major reasons for the failure of any project.
These stats give you an idea about the importance of an effective project management technique:
On an average, projects go over budget by around 27% of their intended cost. (Source: Harvard Business Review)
On an average, one in six software development projects saw a budget overrun of 200 percent. (Source: Harvard Business Review)
In total, IT failure rates are estimated to be around 5 to 15 percent, accounting for a loss of $50–$150 billion per year in the United States alone. (Source: Harvard Business Review)
Most of the organizations have a 70% of the project failure rate. (Source: 4PM)
Only 28% of the companies use project performance techniques. (Source: PMI, 2017)
Only 2.5% of companies complete 100% of their projects in a successful manner. (Source: Gallup)
So, now you know the organizations need an effective project management approach that not only saves their money but also save their time & reputation in the market. Learning good project management techniques is crucial for any organization as it can make or break any organization.
In this blog, we will discuss some of the effective techniques of project management. we will start from the definition of a web development project, then we will move to the project manager’s roles and responsibilities, then various phases of a web development project and finally we will discuss some tips to make your project management foolproof.
“Expect the best, plan for the worst, and prepare to be surprised.” ~ Denis Waitley
What is a web development project management?
Project management is the process of managing a project, and the person who has the sole responsibility is called as Project Manager. Large web application development projects generally have multiple project managers while small ones are managed by a single project manager.
Two most important elements of a project are its stakeholders and resources.
Stakeholders: Whoever takes the benefit from the completed project is a stakeholder. It may be Clients, senior leaders and all those people who may use the project.
Resources: Humans and other tangible sources that you need to complete a project. For instance, a human who creates a design and a printer that gives it a physical form, both are the resources.
So, project management basically implies managing resources in an effective manner so as to deliver the results that match the real needs of the stakeholders.
Roles and responsibilities of a Project Manager
So now you know about what is a web development project and who are project managers. Here we will discuss the roles and responsibilities of a project manager. A project manager has several roles and responsibilities:
- Defines the scope of the project
- Planning and sequencing activities
- Resource Management
- Schedule creation
- Estimation of time and costs
- Creating and managing budgets
- Analyzing and managing risks
- Creating and leading teams
Steps involved in managing a web development project1. Initiation
It is the beginning phase of project management. In this phase, a project manager develops a project overview and selects a team. This phase has immense importance as here the whole project is given a proper direction.
In this phase, the project manager creates a roadmap for the team. Here, the manager sets a goal, defines the scope, create a work breakdown schedule, identify milestones and make plans on communication and risk management.
In this phase, the project manager creates teams and assigns tasks to them. Moreover, he holds meetings and sets up tracking systems. Most of the real work occurs in this phase.
This phase starts along with the execution phase. It involves monitoring team performance and managing its output quality. Here, the manager track project costs, the performance of individual team members and the entire project.
In this phase, a project manager hands over stakeholders and the project is taken to a proper end. Moreover, here a project manager reviews the performance of the team and analyses their effort.
“Plans are only good intentions unless they immediately degenerate into hard work.” ~ Peter Drucker
This phase consists of five unique steps that are surrounded to create a business case and create a core project team.
1. Create a business case
For this, you will need to document the following:
- A simple explanation of problems and opportunities
- A list of alternative solutions
- A short analysis of business advantages, prices, and potential risks
- Project requirements and its potential results
- A small explanation of recommended solutions and the process to apply them
- A small plan that lists required resources, financial analysis and schedule
While creating a business case, one needs to be as specific as possible. And once it is created, you can go for the feasibility study.
2. Going for a feasibility study
Feasibility study means the process of listing the possible solutions to the problems and opportunities presented in the business case. Here, the aim is to document whether a solution is feasible or not.
To go for a feasibility study, one needs to:
- Research proposed solutions to business problems or opportunities
- Recognize and list any other solutions possible
- Take a deep look at each solution to check feasibility in terms of budget, capabilities, resource needs and timeline
- Recognize the potential risks associated with every solution
3. Create a Project Charter
For any project, preparing a charter is really an important thing. And it is also a crucial deliverable at the end of the initiation phase. The project charter is a combination of the previous two steps.
And these steps are a business case and feasibility study. Moreover, this charter defines the vision, scope, deadlines, and deliverables of a project.
In order to develop a project charter, one needs to make a list of the following:
- Goals, vision, and objectives of the project
- Project Scope
- Key deliverables and their deadlines
- Crucial project stakeholders on both sides
- Key roles as well as responsibilities
- Project organizational structure
4. Create the Project team
Here, it is all about finding the right people to deliver the project on time. And for this, you will require a job description. Moreover, this description should include all of the following things:
- Purpose of the role
- Responsibilities associated with the role
- So who will this person report to
- Relevant qualifications
- Performance evaluation criteria
- Salary and working conditions
5. Arrange a Project Management Office
Though it is not the most important, but it puts a large impact on the success of a project. For setting up an office, you need to perform the following actions.
- You will need to find out the location of the office
- You need to ensure that this location has the right infrastructure and facilities for smooth functioning
- Get the right tools, equipment, and utilities required to perform project management duties
- Define the roles and responsibilities of the Project management office and its staff
- Create a standard web development project management process
- Set up and apply templates for project management
Here, you create schedules, estimate costs and set up performance indicators. Planning is quite important in order to make a decision while the project moves from initiation to closure. Planning helps you a lot in case of a complex project.
The end result of this phase is the Project Management Plan.
“A good plan today is better than a perfect plan tomorrow.” ~ Proverb
This phase can be either difficult or easy. It depends on how much effort did you put in the planning. In this phase, you manage the project team, hold team meetings and communicate the project status to stakeholders.
Different project execution activities include:
- Resource management
- Time and task management
- Managing risks and changes
- Managing communications
Project Monitoring & Control
This phase takes place along with project execution. In this phase, you basically check whether the project is meeting the required quality guidelines and deadlines without asking for extra budget.
It is just about keeping track of the project and to make sure whether it is complying with the project plan. It includes the following activities:
- Selecting various KPIs
- Controlling and Monitoring Communications
- Engaging stakeholders
Once you have met all the milestones and handed over all the deliverables, it is time to close the project. This phase includes scope verification.
In scope verification, you connect with the stakeholders and ensure that whether all the promises are included in the final deliverable or not.
“Get the right people. Then no matter what all else you might do wrong after that, the people will save you. That’s what management is all about.” ~ Tom DeMarco
Web Development Project Management Tips
Every business wants to hire website developer and project manager who can transform their dream into reality. To make your web development project successful, you just need to cater to the exact requirement of your clients in a stipulated time frame.
Here we will discuss some effective tips for making your project effective & successful. Here are these:
1. Know the web app development project inside out
You should identify your clients’ requirements and understand their expectations regarding the project. After that, you should develop a solid project plan where job roles and responsibilities are clearly defined.
2. Identify the web development project requirements
You should create a team capable of implementing the project plan effectively. It starts with defining the roles and allocating the right tasks to the team keeping in mind their strengths, personalities, and expertise.
“Talent wins games, but teamwork and intelligence wins championships.” ~ Michael Jordan
3. Get an expert project manager who knows the nitty-gritty of the project
A good project manager should know how to manage an operation team of different strengths and personalities by allocating the tasks to the right person and ensuring that the process is both fun and productive.
4. Effective communication is the key to a successful project
In order to run a web development project smoothly, consistent and effective communication needs to be done between the clients and stakeholders, and new or additional changes should be communicated to the team members in order to avoid ‘surprise attacks’.
With so many project management tools available today, you can choose the best project management tools that fit the bill for your organization. ProofHub, Invoicely, GitHub, online proofing tool, Gantt charts, reports, customized workflows, etc. are some online project management tools that will empower your teams to collaborate and deliver successful projects with some powerful features.
I hope that now you have a clearer idea about project management for website development and other related aspects. These project management techniques are being followed by most of the top web development companies in India to make their project successful. If you also follow these techniques, you can make your web or mobile app development project successful.
In case you want to give suggestions or feedback about this post, you can leave a comment.
A Comprehensive Guide to Managing Web Development Projects was originally published in Hacker Noon on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.
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