Pragmatic Project Planning for Libraries

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Presentation delivered as part of a 90-minute workshop on project planning for the Cooperating Raleigh Colleges Library Staff Workshop on July 22. 2009.

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  • 1.Pragmatic Project Planningfor Libraries Tito Sierra NCSU Libraries July 22, 2009 CRC Library Staff Workshop 2009

2. My Background

  • 5 years leading projects in the Digital Library Initiatives department at NCSU

3. My Background

  • 5 years leading projects in the Digital Library Initiatives department at NCSU
  • Before NCSU, 5 years managing web projects in start-up companies

4. My Background

  • 5 years leading projects in the Digital Library Initiatives department at NCSU
  • Before NCSU, 5 years managing web projects in start-up companies
  • Professional interest in project management, and how organizations implement change

5. Getting to Know You

  • Have you ever participated in formal project management training?

6. Getting to Know You

  • Have you ever participated in formal project management training?
  • How much time do you spend on new projects?10%, 50%, 100%?

7. Getting to Know You

  • Have you ever participated in formal project management training?
  • How much time do you spend on new projects?10%, 50%, 100%?
  • What part of planning a project do you find most challenging?

8. Workshop Outline

  • Project Management Basics
  • Project Planning 101
    • Defining Project Scope
    • Project Schedules
    • Planning Documentation
  • Open Discussion

9. Project Management Basics 10. What is a project? 11. Project

  • A unique undertaking composed ofinterrelated activitieswhich has a well defined beginning and end, often involving staff from cross-functional groups, that operates under specific constraints of resources, schedules, and requirements.

12. Project

  • A unique undertaking composed of interrelated activities which has awell defined beginning and end , often involving staff from cross-functional groups, that operates under specific constraints of resources, schedules, and requirements.

13. Project

  • A unique undertaking composed of interrelated activities which has a well defined beginning and end,often involving staff from cross-functional groups , that operates under specific constraints of resources, schedules, and requirements.

14. Project

  • A unique undertaking composed of interrelated activities which has a well defined beginning and end, often involving staff from cross-functional groups, that operates under specificconstraints of resources, schedules, and requirements .

15. What is project management? 16. Project Management

  • A set of skills and methods of planning, organizing, and managing a project from inception to its successful completion.

17. 18. 19. Project Planning 101 20. What is a project planning? 21. Project Planning

  • A subset of project management activities that happens at the beginning of the project that aims todefine the project , and ensure a shared understanding about what needs to be done.

22. Defining Project Scope 23. Why is it important to define the scope of a project? 24. Importance of Project Scope

  • Provides a shared understanding of what is to be done

25. Importance of Project Scope

  • Provides a shared understanding of what is to be done
  • May impact the composition of the project team

26. Importance of Project Scope

  • Provides a shared understanding of what is to be done
  • May impact the composition of the project team
  • Will likely impact project scheduling

27. Importance of Project Scope

  • Provides a shared understanding of what is to be done
  • May impact the composition of the project team
  • Will likely impact project scheduling
  • Serves as the basis for all cost and resource estimations

28. Project Scope Statement

  • A written statement, a sentence or two long, that clearly and succinctly describes the goal of the project.

29. Project Scope Statement

  • A written statement, a sentence or two long, that clearly and succinctly describes the goal of the project.
  • Sometimes it takesseveral revisionsto get it right!

30. Project Scope Example #1

  • The Virtual Browse Web Service may be used by multiple applications for searching and sequential browsing of catalog records.The service accepts a variety of input parameters and returns a set of one or more catalog keys.

31. Project Scope Example #2

  • The NCSU Libraries Activity Wall application will make it easy for students to broadcast their activities and connect with each other in planned or ad-hoc contexts in NCSU Libraries spaces.

32. Defining Out of Scope

  • It is just as important to define what is out of scope as it is to define what is in scope; doing so providesboundariesfor the project, enabling the team to focus on what is important.

33. Project Schedules 34. Why are schedules important to projects? 35. Purposes of a Schedule

  • Provides a commitment about when things will be done

36. Purposes of a Schedule

  • Provides a commitment about when things will be done
  • Encourage everyone on the project to see their efforts as part of a whole

37. Purposes of a Schedule

  • Provides a commitment about when things will be done
  • Encourage everyone on the project to see their efforts as part of a whole
  • Provides a tool for breaking work into manageable chunks

38. Purposes of a Schedule

  • Provides a commitment about when things will be done
  • Encourage everyone on the project to see their efforts as part of a whole
  • Provides a tool for breaking work into manageable chunks
  • Provides a tool for measuring progress

39. Scheduling Demystified

  • All schedules consist of three basic parts.

40. Scheduling Demystified

  • Planning
    • Definingwhatneeds to be done
    • Decidinghowit will be done

41. Scheduling Demystified

  • Planning
    • Definingwhatneeds to be done
    • Decidinghowit will be done
  • Implementation
    • Getting it done!

42. Scheduling Demystified

  • Planning
    • Definingwhatneeds to be done
    • Decidinghowit will be done
  • Implementation
    • Getting it done!
  • Testing and Evaluation
    • Verify that it was done right

43. 44. How do you know how much time to allocate to each part? 45. Simplified Scheduling

  • When in doubt, pick a project completion date that you are comfortable with, then split the schedule into thirds for the Planning, Implementation, and Evaluation complete dates.

46. The Truth About Schedules

  • Schedule estimation is a probability.

47. The Truth About Schedules

  • Schedule estimation is a probability.
  • The important thing is not how accurate the estimates are, but having a reasonable goal to shoot for.

48. Planning Documentation 49. Planning Documentation

  • Documentation varies greatly from one organization to the next
  • Factors that come into play
    • Size of project
    • Cross departmental/organizational
    • Organizational culture (formal/informal)
  • One size does not fit all!

50. Types of Documentation

  • Vision document
  • Task force charge
  • Project specifications
  • Work-breakdown structure (WBS)
  • Hi-level project schedule
  • Gantt chart

51. Types of Documentation

  • Vision document
  • Task force charge
  • Project specifications
  • Work-breakdown structure (WBS)
  • Hi-level project schedule
  • Gantt chart

52. Titos One-pager Specification 53. Good Specs Simplify

  • The entire point to writing the specification is to describe things in a way that minimizes the amount of work other people will have to understand it.
  • Scott Berkun,
  • Making Things Happen

54. Summary 55. Pragmatic Project Planning

  • Write a Project Scope Statement
  • Select a target project completion date and break up schedule into 3 phases
  • Write a one-pager specification that fleshes out the scope of your project
  • Revise one-pager until project team is clear on the scope of the project

56. Open Discussion 57. What are the greatest challenges you face in getting a project off the ground? 58. Can you provide an example of a project you worked on that would have benefited from more project