Project management is a critical aspect of any organization, and there are many methodologies for managing projects. Depending on the nature of the project and the organization's needs, different project management methodologies like Waterfall, Agile, Scrum, etc., can be used. Each methodology has unique traits, that suit different types of organizations.
Project Management Methods
Waterfall methodology is considered a traditional project management methodology. Waterfall assigns a sequence of stages, and each stage must be completed before starting the next. It's more rigid, requiring detailed planning upfront, leading to a linear approach with a clearly defined end. Waterfall methodology is suitable for projects where the scope, schedule, and budget are known.
Agile methodology, on the other hand, is a flexible approach that involves iterations, collaboration and continuous improvement throughout the project's lifecycle. Agile methodology is usually used for software development and can be adapted for projects that require more flexibility or are iterative in nature.
Scrum is a framework based on agile principles that are used primarily for software development. The Scrum framework is lightweight and easy to understand. Scrum promotes team collaboration and iterative improvements.
The Benefits of Project Portfolio Management
When an organization is involved in multiple projects, Project Portfolio Management (PPM) is the best way to manage all of them cohesively.
PPM involves an integrated approach to project management designed to achieve strategic objectives by selecting, prioritizing and managing projects. PPM provides superior control, visibility and standardization which are necessary to achieve successful project delivery. Some of the benefits of taking a PPM approach are:
- Strategic alignment: PPM ensures that all projects align with an organization's strategic goals.
- Resource optimization: PPM helps ensure that resources are used effectively, minimizing duplication of effort.
- Improved communication: PPM improves communication between teams and stakeholders, leading to better collaboration.
- Greater visibility: PPM provides greater visibility into project status, resource utilization and potential risks across the entire organization.
When planning or managing multiple projects, following PPM best practices will help keep the project portfolio on track. Some of the best practices for PPM include:
- Prioritizing projects: Not all projects will be of the same priority. Careful consideration must be given to which projects are given priority based on their alignment with strategic objectives.
- Establishing a governance structure: PPM must have a well-defined governance structure in place to ensure that the decision-making process is clear and transparent.
- Resource management: PPM should manage resources effectively, balancing the workload and ensuring that people with the right skills are assigned to the relevant projects.
- Standardization: PPM helps standardize processes and reporting, promoting consistency across all projects.
Kern Family Health Care, a Medi-Cal managed care health plan serving residents of Kern County, California, uses TeamDynamix PPM to manage all projects within the organization.
With a simple and intuitive user interface, TeamDynamix makes it easy for project managers to evaluate project requests, approve and prioritize initiatives, assign resources and track and report on progress. TeamDynamix helps EPMO staff keep projects on course, establish clear expectations, and allocate resources more effectively.
“With TeamDynamix, I always have a source of truth on project data,” LaVonne Banks, director of Kern Health Systems’ enterprise project management office (EPMO), said.
When implemented correctly PPM can be immensely valuable for maximizing success and profitability in any organization.
This is the case at Kern where TeamDynamix PPM has brought greater transparency to the project management process. It also saves Banks and her staff a great deal of time when they want to understand the status of projects and report this to organizational leaders.
“I love the platform’s reporting features,” she says. “They’re super easy to use. Being able to pull reports and quickly see real-time data is wonderful.”
Another key benefit of TeamDynamix is that it helps EPMO staff get out ahead of potential issues before they become full-blown problems. While some challenges are beyond the control of project managers, having greater insight makes it more likely that projects will be completed on time and under budget.
“We can quickly identify resource constraints and make adjustments when unexpected circumstances arise,” Banks says. “Because we can identify these issues earlier, we have a better chance of staying on top of resource management.”
Better transparency leads to more accountability and, ultimately, a higher success rate on projects.
In conclusion, different project management methodologies can be used depending on the project's nature and the organization's needs.
When an organization is dealing with multiple projects, taking a Project Portfolio Management approach to project management helps achieve strategic objectives by selecting, prioritizing and managing projects efficiently. The benefits of PPM include resource optimization, strategic alignment, better communication and greater visibility.