FROM: Project Manager
DATE: May 6, 2014
SUBJECT: Addressing Project Changes
History of this company has indicated that projects go as unplanned, where many finish off the budget, do not adhere to the timeline, evince wastage of resources and do not meet the expectations. This memorandum will address the strategies I plan to use to analyze and report unplanned changes, evaluate project quality, procedures to use for handling change control issues and how I intend to communicate whether the project is meeting the stated performance, quality and objectives in order to ensure the project achieves expected results.
Analyzing and Reporting Unplanned Changes
I understand that unplanned changes in one of the triple constraints, scope, schedule and cost, negatively affects the others. The most important issue is not the change itself. Rather, it is how it is handled. To ensure that such changes are managed effectively, Analyzing and reporting unplanned changes will involve several steps that include, determining reasons for implementing change, assessing the impact on the triple constraints, identifying the dependencies, analyzing the risks, determining its impact on project management systems and finally, documenting the results (Burke, 2010).
The first step, determining reason for change involves finding out why the change is requested, whether is necessary, evitable or inevitable, how it can benefit the project, the process involved in implementing it and reviewing whether it is excess to the project. This helps in ensuring the change is important for the project. The second step involves analyzing what impacts the change will have on scope, schedule and cost. This helps in identifying whether it is within the scope of the project, if it will affect project completion time and whether it will require extra funds to complete. To implement the change requires achieving a balance in the three constraints.
The third steps involves identifying the dependencies, which seeks to find out whether the change is interwoven to completion of other activities within the project. In addition, some changes will require extra activities to implement. The fourth step is analyzing the risks. This will involve identifying the risks, both qualitative and quantitative, that can affect the project, as well as threats imposed by the change. The fifth step is identifying all the adjustments that would be necessary to the whole project procedures in order to implement the change. This helps in determining the amount of work at hand. The final step will involve documenting and reporting the changes identified from this process in order to allow the management to make an informed decision.
Evaluating Project Quality
In order to ensure that the project is achieving the intended quality, I will use a Benefits Realization Plan, a tool that makes sure that the intended outcomes of the project are achieved. A benefits realization plan will be essential for the whole project, starting from its delivery ad beyond completion. It helps in focusing on the benefits realization, which is important in tracking whether the project is achieving he desired results. In addition, it goes further to ensure that all the responsible teams n achieving each objective of the project are aware of their tasks and functions, as well as how to execute them (Burke, 2010). To create the benefits realization plan, I will list all the desired benefits, responsible teams and individuals, expected outcomes, stakeholders and sponsors involved. This will be compared to the result of the project after its completion to find out whether all intended benefits are achieved. I addition, I will ensure that all the involved teams and groups, as well as individuals know that it is their responsibility to understand safety and quality information of the project. Evaluation of quality will also include how project outcomes will improve the organization.
Procedures for handling Change Control Issues
As aforementioned, change is an important part of any organization and projects as well. However, the procedures used in managing such change are entirely responsible for the outcome (Burke, 2010). Setting the wrong procedures can mean negative effects on a project, while the right procedures ensure a project achieves its purpose and goals. The procedures that I shall implement for handling change control issues include a procedure for dealing with the change itself such as how it is requested, processed and scheduled for implementation. Others will include detailing responsibilities of the teams involved such as IT, measurements for measuring the change, tools for use, various types of changes to be handled and backing out procedures, implementing and monitoring change, evaluating and reporting the implemented changes.
Communicating whether the Project is Meeting Stated Performance and Quality Objectives
After implementation of changes during the project delivery phase, it is important to communicate and report whether it is achieving the intended goals and objectives. In order to do this, I will use several steps that are necessary in identifying whether the project is achieving its purpose (Burke, 2010). The first step is identifying and recording all the expected performance and benefits by stakeholders. This is important for comparison with the actual results to determine whether the project achieves the goals. The second step is identifying stakeholders who are affected or impacted by each change. This makes it easier to report specific information to its specific users. The third step is laying a procedure for identifying whether a certain benefit has been achieved. This requires collecting both qualitative and quantitative data. After these steps, the final one is putting down all the expected results before project implementation and the actual results after its completion. This will be important in finding out if they are achieved or not. Through out the project, continuous and free communication should be encouraged in both ways, top-to-bottom and vice versa. Each benefit and its impact should be evaluated and documented to ensure every stakeholder is ware of whether it has achieved the intended goal.
Burke, R. (2010). Fundamentals of Project Management: Tools and Techniques. Ringwood: Burke Publishing.