Project management is all about making the project happen. It’s the discipline of initiating, planning, executing, and managing resources with the goal of completing specific deliverables within budget and on-time.
When defining new projects, it’s common to gather stakeholders, brainstorm business requirements, and document every need you hope to address. But how will you know if you’ve hit your mark? What will be used to determine whether the project is actually a success?
Project success criteria are the standards by which the project will be judged at the end to decide whether or not it has been successful in the eyes of the stakeholders. When establishing your success criteria, they should be aligned with stated business requirements, prioritized, attainable, specific and easy to measure, agreed upon by all stakeholders, adjusted as your project scope or requirements change, and documented as part of the statement of work.
Here are 5 tips that we have found helpful.
- Appoint a project manager.
Make sure to appoint a project manager. This person needs to keep everyone informed of the progresses, challenges and risks associated with the project. Regular meetings with the project sponsors is also a key success factor where the project manager can speak openly and make sure that the sponsors are aware of the challenges, and can take action to mitigate risks and issues. Project managers make sure that project schedules are followed, risks and issues are identified and key project challenges are communicated in a timely manner.
A project management team is the dedicated “eyes and ears” looking over the investment to ensure that the project delivers the results on time, within budget and with quality. Project teams all have different skill sets that contribute to a project’s success. Let the techies code, designers design and project managers manage. If these roles get mixed up, it can be very difficult to successfully deliver. A good project manager will help ensure there are proper roles and responsibilities defined, and work is assigned appropriately.
- Involve users early.
One of the key success factors to a successful implementation is to involve users early in the project. Select individuals that know their aspect of the business well, and can influence their co-workers. These users will have the opportunity to provide input to the project and be agents of change in their department to help promote the benefits of the project.
- Test, test, test.
PeopleSoft projects are complex and require sufficient testing. Make sure to build test scenarios that cover all types of scenarios that will ensure confidence and satisfaction before deployment. It’s more damaging if the testing is not thorough enough and problems occur after go live.
- Take advantage of this time to review business processes.
Is your organization preparing for a PeopleSoft upgrade or implementation? Consider taking advantage of this opportunity to also update your Chart of Accounts financial transaction structure. If your organization has undergone significant growth or expanded through acquisition, there may be significant reporting needs remaining unaddressed. Also, by combining this effort with your implementation or upgrade, an organization can maximize the efficiency of resource time spent in data validation and reporting.
If you want your Peoplesoft implementation to be successful, you need the right people to perform the right roles. Project management professionals are a necessity that add value to a project because they make sure that project issues are properly managed and communicated.
Having a single point of contact—someone who can talk about the project’s progress in the client’s language—is an essential part of a well-run project. You want to be able to go directly to the right person all the time, without there ever being a question about who that person is.
Do you really want a developer explaining a stack overflow issue to a project stakeholder? Probably not.
Contact Highstreet today to learn how we can help you “keep an eye” on your PeopleSoft implementation / upgrade.