Monday, July 10, 2006

What is a Methodology?

To run an efficient project you need a Methodology. Yes, you can of course run a project without the support from a methodology. but I can almost guarantee that you will not accomplish what you plan to do on time, within budget with the correct scope and quality. You need a process that will support you and your work that lies ahead of you. A project management methodologyshould not be confused with a production-model such as RUP or similar. The production model is something that you utilize within the project management methodology.

There are a number of different methodologies out on the market but many of them are more or less the same but with different terminology. Different words but more or less the same meaning. There are names like Tollgate, Checkpoint, DecisionPoint, etc… but they are the same.

A fairly basic but efficient methodology. could look something like the picture below.

Each letter represents a CheckPoint (CP) in which you need your steering committee to make one or many decisions to be able to proceed in the project.

A: Project is initialized and you start the preparations. You have the mandate to spend a certain budget up until CP C.
B: The preparations continues according to plan or the SC chooses to abort or revise the budget up to CP C
C: Preparations are finished. The frame of the project is defined and the requirements are agreed upon.
D: The execution of the projects starts. The project commits it self to deliver within a certain budget, scope, time and quality.
E: Execution continues as planned or changes are done to the scope, budget or timeline for the project.
F: The project delivers. Full delivery or part-delivery.
G: The project hand over the result to the receiving organization.
H: The project is closed.

Next step will be an example of how to use the methodology in real life.

Good luck!



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