2014-10-02 Managing Your IT Project - Tips for Success

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  • 1. Thrive. Grow. Achieve.Managing Your IT Project: Tips for SuccessSeth Zarny Raffa Partner Melissa Forrest Raffa Project Manager Nate Solloway Raffa IT ManagerOctober 2, 2014

2. WHATS ON TAPINTRODUCTIONSABOUT RAFFAMANAGING YOUR IT PROJECT: TIPS FOR SUCCESSSETTING EXPECTATIONSDEFINING SCOPEMANAGING SCOPE CREEPRESOURCES AND PROJECT MANAGEMENTCOORDINATING HARDWARE/SOFTWARE UPGRADESSYSTEM CONFIGURATIONDATA MIGRATIONSHARING REAL LIFE EXPERIENCESQUESTIONSPage 2 3. ABOUT RAFFALargest Non-Profit Practice in Washington, DCOver 250 professional staff (approximately 70 in Outsourcing) dedicated to the nonprofit sectorMore professionals dedicated to the non-profit sector than our big four and local firm competitorsMore than 500 current non-profit clients; thousands over our historyNationally RecognizedTop 100 largest accounting firms, 2013 and 2012Top 10 Best of the Best managed accounting firms, 20127th Fastest Growing accounting firm, 2012BDO Alliance MemberMicrosoft Gold ERP Competency PartnerPage 3 4. MANAGING YOUR IT PROJECTThere are a lot of moving parts involved in IT projects. Setting expectations, defining scope, managing scope, project management, coordinating hardware and software upgrades, system configuration, and data migration can be quite challenging. We will share with you our tips and tricks for managing a successful information technology project.Page 4 5. SETTING EXPECTATIONSA common assumption during implementation is that organizations do not have a vital role to play. Organizations often feel that they must leave this job to the technology experts. Technology is only one critical part of the implementation.During implementation it is necessary to combine an organizations business rules with technology for managing information to support those rules. Only the organization knows its own business rules best! Therefore, every organization is an expert in this process, and must work closely with its technology partner.Tips for SuccessAssess Expectations (before implementation begins)Establish Appropriate Expectations (at the beginning of implementation)Evaluate and Redefine Expectations (throughout the implementation)Page 5 6. DEFINING PROJECT SCOPEDefine scope using the following questions:Why are we doing this project? What is it's purpose and value?Where are we starting? And where will we be when we finish?What are we making? What will it look like? What is the goal?How will we make it? Will we build, buy or customize it?Who is the customer? Who are the stakeholders?When will we start? When will we deliver? How long will it take?How much will it cost?Elicit requirements from all customers and stakeholders.Define scope so that it is objective and measurable.Detail the scope definition over time using progressive elaboration.Page 6 7. MANAGING SCOPE CREEPThe project manager must handle scope creep and ultimately say yes or no to new requests as soon as they come in.Understand the project requirements. You want clarity around the goals and objectives of the work in the initial planning stage.Identify major and minor milestones within the project and put them on the timeline. Review milestones when scope changes are requested; these dates serve to keep the project on track.Include a process for changing scope. Define how the changes will be done, and who will do them.Guard against gold plating. This is a tendency by members of the software development team to over-deliver on the scope and add features.Know when to say no. There are going to be unreasonable requests for scope changes that you cant green light.If you cant say no, here are some alternatives.If something new goes into the scope, make sure that something comes out.Start a back-log (or second project) for requests denied in the current project.Price the scope creep. How much will you charge for added features? This might discourage some of the incoming requests.Page 7 8. STAFF RESOURCES AND STRONG PROJECT MANAGEMENTEnsure that your organization has the staff resources in place to see the project through to completion. Many organizations begin implementation without resourcing it adequately, resulting in overworked, unhappy employees and a less- than-optimal implementation.Identify a dedicated project leader and committee for your implementation. This will help ensure that the project goes smoothly. Consider reassigning or removing some of the team members normal job duties so that they have enough time to concentrate on the tasks at hand.Identify a team leader with strong project management skills who can facilitate team communication, address any issues that may arise, and keep the implementation on schedule.Tip for SuccessWork with an external project manager. An external project manager works with your team to ensure your project runs smoothly and is successfully completed, on time and on budget. Project managers make sure effective communication, project focus, and appropriate controls are maintained throughout the implementation lifecycle.Page 8 9. COORDINATING HARDWARE/SOFTWARE UPGRADESOut of the box is great, customization is the enemyTrust in best practicesMost staff arent snowflakesYou are not shopping for today, you are shopping for 5 years from nowMinimum requirements are meaninglessPage 9 10. SYSTEM CONFIGURATIONOut of the box is wrongYour intern cannot set this upSpecialistsHardeningPage 10 11. DATA MIGRATIONStagingMeasure twice cut onceScheduling. Is the big conference next week? When are paychecks cut?Page 11 12. REAL LIFE EXPERIENCESWhat are your real life experiences?Page 12 13. QUESTIONSPage 13 14. THANK YOU!14Seth Zarny Partner szarny@raffa.com 301.279.6500 Melissa Forrest Project Manager mforrest@raffa.com 301.279.6514 Nate Solloway IT Manager nsolloway@raffa.com 202.955.8417 Evette Collins Account Executive ecollins@raffa.com 202.955.6708