5.5

Planning and Commitment

A decision to initiate a project is followed by a Conceptualization stage in which the Pre-Study is turned into a feasible concept or business process. Business commitment is often gained during workshops and when the concept is approved by the Project Steering Group. The concept is also the basis for the Business Requirements used by the solution designers.

In the Initiation Phase, the project proposal is turned into a Project Plan. In order to create a project plan, Project team and Steering Group must consider

  • the way the project is delivered (choose a methodology)
  • organizational readiness for the change
  • resourcing, costs and dependencies with other projects
  • risks and requirements for risk mitigation
  • must-have deliverables, which correlate with the classification
  • a realistic schedule based on all of the above

To enable efficient monitoring and management, the project’s must-have deliverables are determined and the acceptance criteria are agreed upon. Each project phase ends with a Gate Review Meeting, at which the Business Case is validated, Deliverables are checked and future needs are evaluated. Project Steering Meetings concentrate on the actual status of the project, while the Gate Review Meetings assess the quality and validity of the project. Gate Review Meetings also give guidance and manage the resourcing for the next Phase.

 

PM_Dynamics_of_Project_Meetings

Figure 5.5.1 The Dynamics of Project Meetings.

 

As a result of the planning process, the project cost estimate and organizational change predictions become more accurate. The change estimates include role description changes as well as changes to current processes and systems. The project receives appropriate follow-up metrics (KPIs) as well as plans for communication and the management of quality and organizational change. While the Conceptualization Gate 0 (G0), can be approved by Project Steering Group, the Planning Gate 1 (G1) is further validated by Project Portfolio Steering. Portfolio Steering grants funding and determines decision-making limits for the rest of the project based on all of the information available.

Recurring management tasks throughout the various phases of a project include change management and communication, quality assurance, risk and readiness assessment, and architecture reviews.

 

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