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Title: Successful Projects 101:


1
Successful Projects 101
  • planning and managing a project for your library

Sam Kalb, Assessment Scholarly Communication
Services Coordinator , Queens University
Library kalbs_at_queensu.ca
2
Presentation Outline
  • Introduction
  • What Is a project?
  • What is project management?
  • Project management constraints
  • Project lifecycle Scoping, Planning, Executing,
    Controlling, Closing
  • Project Software
  • Project-related Resources

3
What Is a Project?
  • Temporary in nature (e.g. create a set of online
    tutorials about using government documents)
  • Specific goals (e.g. set of online tutorials on
    finding Ontario government pubs)
  • Clear-cut starting and ending date
  • Dedicated funding (in most cases)

4
A library project may be
  • Response to a specific opportunity, vision, or
    challenge (e.g. building project like
    establishing a learning commons or renovating the
    old library)
  • New management system/organizational
    restructuring (e.g. moving to a team-based
    structure)
  • Patron service (e.g. self-check circulation)
  • Special event/exhibition (e.g. librarys 25th
    anniversary)
  • Need to replace a dysfunctional legacy system
    (e.g. old library system)
  • Response to an external funding opportunity (e.g.
    the government is offering a grant to develop
    cooperative information services within
    communities)

5
Projects Are About Change
  • Change that can be measured/evaluated over time
  • how will behaviour be changed?
  • how will the change impact/benefit our users,
    staff?
  • what will be done more efficiently, effectively,
    or that we couldnt do before?

6
What Project Management Isn?t
If you don't know where you are going, any road
will take you there. George Harrison, "Any
Road", Brainwashed, 2002. If you don't know
where you are, a map won't help.
7
PM is a Process
  • Good project management doesn't have to be
    costly, complicated, or cumbersome. In short,
    don't panic.
  • You already know a lot about managing projects.
  • If you've moved to a new home, hosted a family
    reunion, or remodelled a bathroom, you already
    know about achieving objectives, sticking to a
    schedule, working within a budget, and delivering
    quality.
  • Biafore, Bonnie. On Time! On Track! On Target!
    Managing Your Projects Successfully with
    Microsoft Project, Microsoft Press, c2006.

8
PM is Scalable
No matter the size of the library or project, a
good project management process can adapt to fit.
9
Benefits of Project Management
  • Knowing where you are going and when you have
    arrived
  • Identify manageable work loads
  • Identify where to focus your efforts
  • Knowing where you stand
  • Maintaining good communication
  • Keeping calm and maintaining consistency
  • Prevent problems and fire drills
  • Interdepartmental cooperation that builds
    synergies across the organization

10
Project Management the Library
  • Libraries have historically been transaction
    based not project based, i.e. Reference desk
    transactions, number of books ordered,
    catalogued, processed, number of books
    circulated, shelved
  • Save dollars by using current staff - budget
  • Can work within work groups, but most
    significantly, across established work group

11
Project Manager
  • Project Manager is responsible for accomplishing
    the objectives of the project.
  • Establishes priorities and resolves conflicts
  • Establishes project plan
  • Manages to the project plan
  • Takes corrective action if necessary
  • Works directly with project sponsor to ensure
    project goals are met

Omitted from Presentation
12
Stakeholders
  • All who are involved directly and indirectly with
    the project including students, faculty, staff,
    community, vendors.
  • Make a list of all the stakeholders identified so
    far in the project.
  • You may also want to detail roles of each
    stakeholder in this section.
  • Understand the Organizational Culture!

13
Project Team
  • Gather required expertise on the team, or
    designate experts whom the team can consult, as
    needed
  • Not everyone works well in teams but the project
    team can be a good opportunity to develop team
    skills
  • Try to represent major stakeholder groups if
    possible
  • Keep the size of the team manageable

Omitted from Presentation
14
Project Constraints Model
Time
Outcome
Quality
Costs
  • A successful project
  • Delivers the outcome with an agreed upon quality.
  • Does not overrun its end date.
  • Remains within budget (cost of resources).

15
Project Management Process
  • The basic elements of project management are
    illustrated in this project life cycle diagram.

Singh, Manjeet. ProjectMind's Quick Guide to
Project Management
16
Project Life Cycle
  • Initiation Phase (Scoping the Plan) identify
    need, deliverables assign priority
  • Planning Phase (Developing the Plan) project
    specifics, such as tasks, milestones, and
    associated costs
  • Implementation Phase (Executing the Plan)
    applies project plan direct team in producing
    deliverables implement approved changes and
    corrective actions
  • Monitoring Controlling Process monitor the
    projects schedule and budget, making adjustments
    as necessary, mitigate risk
  • Completion Phase (Closing Out the Project)
    project assessment wrap-up report, integrating
    into ongoing operations

17
Communication is Key
18
Communication Plan
  • Whenever people work together, communication is
    an essential ingredient for success
  • A communication plan describes how you're going
    to keep the people involved with a project
    informed.
  • Communication strategies may be simple or
    sophisticated and can range from a weekly status
    report to a collaborative Web site. At their
    core, communication plans answer the questions
  • Who needs to know?
  • What do they need to know?
  • When do they need to know it?

19
National Service Quality Benchmarking Project
(LibQUAL Canada) - Communication Plan
  • Moderated discussion/announcement list
  • Consortial Web site
  • Members encouraged to contribute in shaping each
    phase of the project
  • Timelines and action items revised at each stage
    based on member input.
  • Reports to the sponsor (CARL) at completion of
    each milestone.
  • Highest priority Every query to be answered in
    a timely fashion , in most cases, exchange
    shared with the membership

20
?
21
Business Case
  • Projects often begin with a business case
  • The purpose of a business case is to capture the
    reasoning for initiating a project or task.
  • It is often presented in a well-structured
    written document, but may also sometimes come in
    the form of a short verbal argumentation.
  • The logic of the business case is that, whenever
    resources such as money or effort are consumed,
    they should be in support of the business of
    the organization.
  • Queen's Digital Repository (QSpace) Business Plan

Omitted from Presentation
22
Conducting a pilot project
  • The amount of planning required is determined by
    the size and complexity of the project.
  • Key to the planning process for large complex
    projects can be conducting a pilot project.

Omitted from Presentation
23
Scoping the Project
Scoping the Project
Developing the Plan
Launching the Project
Monitoring Controlling
Closing Out the Project
24
Scoping the Project
State the Problem/ Opportunity
Establish the Project Goal
Define the Project Objectives
Identify the Deliverables / Success Criteria
List Assumptions, Risks, Obstacles
25
State the Problem/ Opportunity
Establish the Project Goal
Define the Project Objectives
Identify the Deliverables / Success Criteria
List Assumptions, Risks, Obstacles
26
Problem/Opportunity
  • A short, crisply phrased piece of information
    covering
  • what is to be done
  • why it is to be done
  • value it provides if it is done
  • A statement of fact that everyone in the
    organization will accept as true
  • Should communicate why the project should be
    accomplished

27
Queens Digital Repository Project Statement
  • To establish an innovative institutional digital
    repository to collect, preserve, and enable
    distribution of research, teaching and learning
    material generated by Queen's scholars, teachers
    and researchers.   It will reflect the Queen's
    goal to Foster scholarship and interdisciplinary
    teaching and learning , the library's goals to
    support learning and excellence in teaching and
    research (an extension of the consortial
    Scholar's Portal to digital publications) and
    provide a stable long-term storage and content
    management system to house academic materials in
    a variety of digital formats.

28
Queens Next Gen OPAC Project Statement
  • Improved user satisfaction with catalogue
    searching, and, secondarily, with the discovery
    environment for other local and remote sources
  • No loss in current functionality, for example
    real time circulation records
  • This is an interface replacement only there is
    no intention to make improvements in technical
    services or circulation workflows
  • Minimal ongoing staffing requirements, e.g. to
    maintain data connections

29
State the Problem/ Opportunity
Establish the Project Goal
Define the Project Objectives
Identify the Deliverables / Success Criteria
List Assumptions, Risks, Obstacles
30
Primary Project Goal
  • A project has one primary goal which gives
    purpose and direction to the project
  • Defines the final deliverable and outcome
  • States in clear terms what is to be accomplished
  • Is a reference point for questions about scope
    and purpose of the project

31
National Service Quality Benchmarking Project
  • Opportunity For Canadian libraries to benchmark
    their service performance measures and how
    libraries can use the results to improve services
    with other Canadian libraries.
  • Primary Goal To create a large database of
    Canadian content that would offer meaningful
    benchmarking of services via as many Canadian
    academic libraries as possible participating in
    ARLs LibQUAL Survey in 2007.

32
State the Problem/ Opportunity
Establish the Project Goal
Define the Project Objectives
Identify the Deliverables / Success Criteria
List Assumptions, Risks, Obstacles
33
S.M.A.R.T. Objectives
34
Queens Digital Repository Project Sample of
the Objectives
  • Install and configure the DSPACE software.
  • Customize base DSPACE software for Queens as
    specified by project team.
  • Create Demo for early adopters and project team.
  • Work with Community coordinators to customize
    early adopter communities.
  • Work with Community coordinators to post
    submissions using policy guidelines.
  • Create documentation and training program for
    training of staff assigned by project.

35
State the Problem/ Opportunity
Establish the Project Goal
Define the Project Objectives
Identify the Deliverables / Success Criteria
List Assumptions, Risks, Obstacles
36
Success Criteria / Deliverables
  • Clearly state the expected impact
  • Articulate/quantify outcomes so success can be
    measured
  • Make a list of the deliverables to be produced by
    the project.
  • Describe each deliverable in an unambiguous
    manner that is understood by the team member
    responsible for it.

37
Queens Research Guides ProjectDeliverables
38
State the Problem/ Opportunity
Establish the Project Goal
Define the Project Objectives
Identify the Deliverables / Success Criteria
List Assumptions, Risks, Obstacles
39
Assumptions Risks
  • Identify factors that might affect the outcome or
    completion of the project
  • Used to alert management the project team to
    factors that may interfere with project work
  • Types of assumptions and risks
  • Technological (equipment problems)
  • Environmental (weather)
  • Interpersonal (need to rely on student workers)
  • Cultural (ensure dont omit consultation with a
    key stakeholder group)
  • Political (the current economic crisis)

40
Queens Next Gen OPAC Project Sample of Risks
Assumptions
  • Risks
  • Timelines could be negatively affected by
    constraints on working group members, on
    availability of other staff for consultations and
    approvals coordination with vendor. We accept
    the risk that the system may not be implemented
    for 2008/09.
  • The system options are new and in some cases
    unproven. We will endeavour to complete a
    thorough analysis of the pros and cons of each
    option, and develop an exit strategy for the
    chosen system. We do not foresee any risks to
    library data, and will ensure that there are
    none.
  • Assumptions
  • The Library Administration and Management Team
    fully support this project and will champion it
    as a funding priority.

41
National Service Quality Benchmarking Project
  • Underlying assumption most libraries did not
    have dedicated assessment staff to manage the
    process successfully on their own
  • Related Objectives
  • To guide consortium members through the planning
    process, via discrete, manageable sets of
    actions each stage with its own timelines and
    deliverables.
  • To provide an easy to use, one-stop resource for
    member libraries with material, relevant to
    Canadian libraries, that could be readily adapted
    by individual libraries for their use.

42
Project Statement Form Project Statement Form Project Statement Form
Project Name Project Manager Team Members
Problem / Opportunity (Why do this project?) Problem / Opportunity (Why do this project?) Problem / Opportunity (Why do this project?)
Project Goal Project Goal Project Goal
Objectives (Specific, Measurable, Assignable), Duration? Cost? Objectives (Specific, Measurable, Assignable), Duration? Cost? Objectives (Specific, Measurable, Assignable), Duration? Cost?
Success Criteria (Outcomes) Success Criteria (Outcomes) Success Criteria (Outcomes)
Assumptions, Risks, Obstacles Assumptions, Risks, Obstacles Assumptions, Risks, Obstacles
43
Defining the Project
Scoping the Project
Developing the Plan
Launching the Plan
Monitoring Controlling
Closing Out the Project
44
Making Time to Plan
  • Invest in the Planning Process
  • Taking the necessary time to plan develop each
    phase of the project is key to a successful
    project all the more important if you are new
    to project management or to the objective of the
    project
  • Just getting on with the project can be a
    recipe for failure

45
Pre-Planning - Environmental Scan
  • Brainstorm ideas
  • Conduct library visits
  • Research the topic
  • Review professional literature
  • Examine best practices at other libraries

46
Planning Phase
Identify Project Tasks (WBS)
Estimate Task Duration
Determine Resource Requirements
Construct/Analyze Project Network
Prepare the Schedule/Timeline
47
Identify Project Tasks (WBS)
Estimate Task Duration
Determine Resource Requirements
Construct/Analyze Project Network
Prepare the Schedule/Timeline
48
Work Breakdown Structure (WBS)
  • Breaks the project into chunks of work at a level
    of detail that meets planning and scheduling
    needs

Broader
Narrower
49
WBS Preparation
  • Characteristics of a good WBS
  • Status/completion are measurable
  • Clearly defined start/end events
  • Activity has a deliverable
  • Time/cost easily estimated
  • Activity duration within acceptable limits
  • Work assignments are independent

Omitted from Presentation
50
Queens Next Gen OPAC Project
51
Identify Project Tasks (WBS)
Estimate Task Duration
Determine Resource Requirements
Construct/Analyze Project Network
Prepare the Schedule/Timeline
52
Estimate Task Duration
  • Estimate task durations based on
  • Similarity to other activities
  • Historical data
  • Expert advice
  • Skill levels of staff involved

53
Identify Project Tasks (WBS)
Estimate Task Duration
Determine Resource Requirements
Construct/Analyze Project Network
Prepare the Schedule/Timeline
54
Determining Resource Requirements
  • Identify all the resources required for each
    activity
  • Estimate the duration of each task
  • Linkage between and among activities/tasks

55
National Service Quality Benchmarking
ProjectDetermining Resource Requirements
56
Project Organization Resources
  • People - skills and value
  • Facilities
  • Equipment
  • Money
  • Materials
  • Time

Omitted from Presentation
57
Responsibility Matrix
  • Creates accountability by assigning each task to
    a person

Task Joe Mary Renee
Activity 1 x
Activity 2 x
Activity 3 x
Omitted from Presentation
58
Identify Project Tasks (WBS)
Estimate Task Duration
Determine Resource Requirements
Construct/Analyze Project Network
Prepare the Schedule/Timeline
59
Construct/Analyze Project Network
  • The project network is the set of project tasks
    presented in sequence with their dependencies,
    durations, resources milestones.
  • Dependencies create the backbone of the project
    network
  • e.g. Task B cannot begin until task A is
    complete.
  • The project network or can be represented as a
    simple list or visually in chart form.

A. Design graphics
B. Insert content
60
Identify Project Tasks (WBS)
Estimate Task Duration
Determine Resource Requirements
Construct/Analyze Project Network
Prepare the Schedule/Timeline
61
Project Scheduling
  • Timeline for the projects activities in sequence
    with
  • Milestones
  • Actions
  • Start End Dates
  • Relationship among activities
  • Types of timelines text tables, GANTT charts,
    Critical paths, PERT charts, etc.

62
Timeline in Tabular Form
  • Good approach for schedules without many sets of
    activities in complex relationships.
  • Does not require specialised skills in preparing
    GANTT charts, etc.
  • National Service Quality
    Benchmarking Project Timeline

http//library.queensu.ca/webir/canlibqual/timelin
e.htm
63
Queens Next Gen Project - Timeline
64
GANTT Chart
  • Visual scheduling tool
  • Graphical representation of information in WBS
  • Show dependencies between tasks, personnel, and
    other resources allocations
  • Track progress towards completion

Omitted from Presentation
65
Sample GANTT Chart
Queens Mutlimedia Tutorials Project Gantt Chart
66
Critical Path
  • Longest pathway to your goal.
  • Know your critical path and manage to it.

Omitted from Presentation
Created by Jeremy Kemp. 2005/01/11
67
PERT Charts
  • Program (or Project) Evaluation and Review
    Technique
  • designed to analyze and represent the tasks
    involved in completing a project.
  • Used more in RD-type projects where time, rather
    than cost, is the major factor.
  • PERT is intended for very large-scale, one-time,
    complex, non-routine projects.

Omitted from Presentation
68
Project Planning Tools
  • Project software
  • Post it notes on wall
  • 3 x 5 cards in colors for each task
  • Chalk board
  • Document everything!!

69
Risk Management Planning
  • Identify risks and potential obstacles to the
    project that
  • could significantly impact on its completion
  • are reasonably likely to occur
  • Incorporate steps in plan to mitigate risk and
    avoid obstacles
  • Monitor the risks you've identified and watch for
    new risks that may arise

70
National Service Quality Benchmarking Project -
Some Risks Assumptions
  • Risk that potential participants might be
    deterred by the amount of work involved.
    Strategy provide breakdown of tasks in
    manageable chunks, sample documents explaining
    every step in the process and hand-holding by
    the project manager (always an email or phone
    call away)
  • Risk possible long, critical delays getting
    project approval from local research ethics board
    (REB) for the project. Strategy provide
    examples of successful REB submissions.
  • Risk that libraries would not know how to make
    effective use of their survey data. Strategy
    provide two workshops and supporting
    documentation on the web site.

71
Achieve Balance between Planning and Flexibility
  • The project plan needs to be clear and firm in
    order to avoid ambiguity but flexible enough to
    accommodate changes and unanticipated events.

Omitted from Presentation
72
Defining the Project
Scoping the Project
Developing the Plan
Launching the Project
Monitoring Controlling
Closing Out the Project
73
Launching the Project
  • Communication
  • Kickoff meeting with project team ( perhaps
    major stakeholders
  • Regular team meetings to review progress

74
Defining the Project
Scoping the Project
Developing the Plan
Launching the Project
Monitoring Controlling
Closing Out the Project
75
Monitoring Controlling
  • Monitor Status - Review Meetings
  • Manage Change Resolve Conflicts
  • Analyze Variances
  • Plan and Take Corrective Action
  • Report Status to Stakeholders

76
Change Management
  • Change management boils down to a few steps
  • Recording change requests
  • Evaluating cost, schedule, and quality impact for
    change requests
  • Deciding the fate of change requests (accepting,
    rejecting, requesting modifications)
  • Accepting change requests or deferring requests
    to a future stage and updating project documents
    to reflect the change

Omitted from Presentation
77
Watch for Creepers! Scope/Feature Creep
  • Without a clear description of the projects
    scope, change control is impossible and scope
    creep is practically guaranteed.
  • Change is constant must be accommodated
  • Some potential changes may have to be recorded
    and deferred to later enhancement or
    adjustment process after the project is
    complete.

78
Defining the Project
Scoping the Project
Developing the Plan
Launching the Project
Monitoring Controlling
Closing Out the Project
79
Closing Out the Project
  • Complete Closing Activities (acknowledge your
    team celebrate successes)
  • Document Best Practices
  • Close the Project
  • Hand off service/support to operational units

80
National Service Quality Benchmarking Project
- Project Closing
  • Survey of participants to assess their experience
    with the consortium and survey
  • What worked well and what could have been
    improved
  • Would they want to do it again, if so, how often
    and in what form
  • Final report to the Canadian Association of
    Research Libraries, the projects sponsor.

81
Project Management Software
  • Software can assist teams in planning, monitoring
    the projects progress and identifying problems
    more efficiently.
  • Project management software types desktop,
    web-based stand alone or collaborative
    commercial or open-source.
  • General, collaborative tools, e.g. wikis
  • It is important to realize that the software is
    simply a tool and cannot compensate for poor
    planning!

82
Good Software Criteria
Omitted from Presentation
  • Ease of Use All project management software has
    a learning curve, but the best have functions
    that are easy to find and simple enough for
    anyone to use from Day 1, Project 1.
  • Collaboration How information and issues are
    communicated with project team members, including
    email, conference calls, meetings, web-based
    locations and more. Collaboration should be easy
    to use.
  • Resource Management Project management software
    should manage and control the resources needed to
    run a project, such as people, money, time and
    equipment.
  • Project Management The process, practice and
    activities needed to perform continuous
    evaluation, prioritization, budgeting and
    selection of investments is key. Proper project
    management capabilities provide the greatest
    value and contribution to the strategic interest
    of your company.
  • Help/Support Project management software should
    offer a comprehensive user guide and help system.
    The manufacturer should provide email addresses
    or telephone numbers for direct answers to
    technical questions.

83
Criticism of PM Software or why bother?
Omitted from Presentation
  • Learning curve to use proficiently
  • Offers complicated features to meet the needs of
    project management professionals. Not suitable
    for all kind of projects
  • For a single small project, management software
    often incurs a larger time-overhead than is
    worthwhile
  • Software focus on scheduling can lead reduced
    focus on overall planning process, e.g. MS Project

84
Project Management - Selected Resources
  • Berkun, Scott. The art of project management,
    OReilly, 2005. Jargon-free, well-written,
    practical guide. Excellent introduction to
    project management.
  • Associations Project Management Institute,
    allPM.com (Resources, templates, forums, book
    review links)
  • Glossaries/Dictionaries Project Management
    Glossary
  • Journals Project Management Journal,
    International Journal of Project Management
  • Software reviews Web-based software, TopTen
    Reviews, Free software
  • Good annotated project management site
    ProjectMinds.coms Useful Websites

85
Tips for Successful Project Managers
  • Be prepared
  • Things will go wrong in every project. Look
    carefully at your assumptions, risk management
    and library culture.
  • Plan, plan and plan no surprises
  • Be a cheerleader. Motivation is essential.
  • Be a leader
  • Be well connected. Vendors will call and need a
    decision, NOW. If you are not reachable, they
    will move on to the next project. Team members
    will need to consult you many times. Calendars,
    schedules and a cell phone help.
  • Spend more time planning than doing.
  • Be vigilant. Just because the ribbon cutting is
    behind you, there are often many details left to
    finish. Motivation is often gone and energy and
    enthusiasm for the project has been depleted.
  • Celebrate your successes!

Omitted from Presentation
86
Project Management Summary
  • Know what you are trying to accomplish/ build
  • Keep focused on the milestones/outcomes
  • Communicate
  • React early to issues
  • Have a sponsor both managerial and technical
  • Recognize your team celebrate your successes
  • Learn from the project

87
  • Thank You
  • Any Questions?
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