Why project management for IT projects? Well, that’s because overseeing software development, hardware installations, network upgrades, and other IT projects and delivering IT services are all part of IT project management. And, since IT projects are intangible and resources are difficult to replace, managing the necessary project components involved may be a significant challenge for startup companies.
In addition to these typical issues that may lead to a project’s failure, the following variables can harm an IT project’s success:
- Technology advancements made throughout the project’s implementation
- Changes in infrastructure that affect security and data management
- Hardware, software, network infrastructure, and data have unknown dependent relationships
The first-time, first-use penalty, which represents the entire risk a company takes when adopting new technology for the first time, may also derail IT initiatives. Because the technology has never been deployed or utilized in the company before, there are likely to be issues that will jeopardize the project’s success.
According to Statista, the capacity of businesses in the IT sector to develop their services and expand their technical expertise determines their profitability. So, no matter what obstacles you may face, IT project management is critical for even small IT businesses to succeed.
Project Management for IT Projects: The Five Steps
The project management life cycle comprises five process categories that are common to all projects. The stages of a project, on the other hand, are unique to each project and reflect the project’s life cycle.
- Initiation: The project objective, requirement, or issue is established from the start. Then, the project is given to a project manager, and the project charter is established.
- Planning: The project manager and the project team collaborate to plan all of the actions required to complete the project successfully. The project planning process is iterative, and planning is essential throughout the project.
- Execution: Once the project plan has been developed, the project team puts it into action to produce its deliverables. During project execution, the project may transition to project planning as required.
- Monitoring and control: The project manager oversees and supervises the project team’s work in terms of quality, time, cost, scope, risk, and other factors. Monitoring and control is a continuous process that ensures the project meets its goals for each project objective.
- Closing: Closure occurs after each phase and at the end of the whole project to verify that all work has been finished and authorized. Responsibility has been transferred from the project team to operations.
Challenges Faced by Startups
The five project management steps outlined above may be more than a startup can handle. As a result, when it comes to starting and executing IT projects, startups confront several difficulties. Startups often struggle to find specialized IT project management staff. In many instances, just one manager is available to handle several projects, resulting in work overload, problems, and errors. They may, on the other hand, believe hiring an additional project manager as a part-time resource is costly, which is a total misunderstanding.
Then there’s the price of premium tools. It’s no surprise that many startups lack the financial resources to invest in high-end software and tools. But in many instances, such expensive tools may be required to do IT project management properly. On the other hand, the usefulness of free tools may not be sufficient to meet requirements. These difficulties may result in partial or total loss. So, finding dependable ways to circumvent them is critical. As well as these challenges, many startups face the following challenges with IT projects of various scales:
- Mid-project adjustments
- Poor communication between teams
- Unclear expectations from end-users, stakeholders, and the business itself
- Staying in touch with remote stakeholders
Overcoming IT Project Management Challenges
As previously said, one of the most effective measures to address IT project management issues is to hire a professional project manager as a part-time resource. Many businesses fail due to a lack of experts who can complete the process correctly. But a competent project manager can handle many complexities and minimize the risks. It may also save time and money in the long run. Make certain that the project manager you choose is a master of the subject and knows open-source tools well. So, the manager can train the startup’s staff to use those resources correctly and effectively.
You can also consider a project management mentor, which is the most successful method of developing competent project managers. Mentors must be experienced project managers who have “been around, done that, completely messed up, and survived to learn from it.” Mentors can assist project managers while they conduct routine duties such as planning, tracking, and problem-solving. Mentors are remarkably helpful during a crisis.
Communication Is Critical to Successful IT Project Management
According to research, poor communication causes one out of every five projects to fail. Given the organizational and geographic variety of project teams, it’s critical to think about all communication options. With today’s advanced technology, we can quickly connect with team members no matter where they are. The importance of a communication strategy throughout the project planning phases is that it impacts the project’s success.
Active or passive communication techniques are available now.
ACTIVE communication means are those that are utilized at the current time to communicate, such as the usage of:
- The telephone conference
- Face to Face meetings
- Video conference
- Telephone – the good old fashioned call
- Stand up presentations in person
PASSIVE communication methods are ones that recipients may use at their convenience, such as:
- Intranet bulletin boards
- Project newsletter – paper-based
- Tabletop presentation
Always utilize a combination of active and passive communication techniques to support one another. And this needs addressing as part of the overall communication strategy for project management.
What are the Best Practices?
To get IT project management right, you can take a variety of approaches. For example, you can make use of the Agile models. Agile is a software development model that focuses on separating the project into a few iterations. And each iteration will develop and demonstrate an increment in the system.
Agile models enhance communication, team collaboration, and customer collaboration, which are critical to the project’s success. Scrum, Kanban, Extreme Programming (XP), and the Adaptive Project Framework are examples of Agile frameworks to achieve these principles (APF). Agile’s four primary values are as follows:
- Individuals and interactions over processes and tools
- Collaboration with customers is preferred above contract negotiations
- Sticking to a plan in the face of change
- Sticking to a plan in the face of change Working on software that has extensive documentation
The following IT project management best practices may also be beneficial to startups:
- Communicate effectively
- Ask for feedback
- Create a resource plan
- Have a kickoff meeting
- Establish project scope and objectives
- Create a risk response team
- Ensure proper documentation
- Avoid adding unrealistic milestones
- Review and reflect on the performance
- Ensure that the project is transparent
- Expect and accommodate changing requests
We Can Help You With IT Project Management
The need for IT experts is evident, and you may think of outsourcing your project to an external expert team. As mentioned, this choice can save you time and money in the long run and also result in better project management with no errors. With our broad range of services, we can fulfill your IT project’s requirements, so why not choose us? With our years of experience and top-notch resources, we can help you. Please contact us right now for more information.