Tools and techniques - how to get things done
09 Jun 2016
What tools and techniques do you use to get your job done as a project manager?
In particular, I'm thinking about the techniques you use to draw together the documents that underpin the PRINCE2 method of managing projects. Do you use Product Breakdown Structures? Stakeholder analysis matrices? Do you bring in techniques from other methods to create and develop your PRINCE2 documents?
I suppose one technique I'm beginning to understand more is the use of a Product Breakdown Structure to understand what the elements of a project are. This can then be used to create a product flow diagram, which then informs the schedule. It's a train of thought process that shows your workings and helps ensure you don't miss anything.
There is little more to it than just the PBS. The PRINCE2 plan theme, actually requres a product based planning approach to be adopted to develop both the project plan and subsequent stage plans. Taking inspiration from Agile and early engagement with the customer, a project manager should ideally have a workshop to define what the products are needed to achieve the obectives in the business case, next identify the activities needed to develop those products. Thirdly, any dependencies between those activities and products should be identified and lastly, the resources needed (time and people needed) are assessed. This information is then used to develop the project schedule.
Yes, I was trying to encourage further responses buy giving a brief example of what I meant.
I like the way you have blended an agile technique in with the product based planning of PRINCE2. That's always been a part of PRINCE2 - talking to people and getting agreement to what is being delivered - but the ways of doing it aren't normally addressed. Using facilitated workshops is a good use of an agile technique within a PRINCE2 context.
Facilitated workshops should also be used to develop the business case and project initiation document so the project team can take ownership. It should also be used to identify and examine project risks so mitigation activities can be properly planned, implemented and communicated.
Long time since this thread had an update...
My tool kit, in sequence of use as much as possible is:
= Framing workshop with leadership to understand where we could go and what the political landscape's features are
= goal statement crafted by (or with ) the sponsor to state what will have been testably achieved by the end of their funding or time.
= kick-off with all concerned to determine the deliverables that satisfy the goal - thats Epics and Backlogs or Product Breakdowns. In parallel we are determining the development approach that best balances stability and clarity of goal and skill of the team and sponsor's constraints - Buy-Build-Agile-Predictive etc as suits the work-streams
= planning workshops in several streams - Buiness for what behaviours will use project outputs to create benefits and how do we foster those, - Controls with PMO for what strategies and policies and templates and cadence flows info to decision makers and Backlog grooming or Breakdown and precedence development to build team work identification and scheduling whether kanban or gantt
Thats the front end.
Next is execution, montor, control and thats a discussion in Quality Control and Burncharts or Earned Value principles (EV is simple when you ditch the formulea)
I'm using lots of documents - I'll post here which software I use:
- Presentations: MS Powerpoint
- E-mail templates: MS Outlook
- Document templates: MS Word, MS Excel
- Visual templates: MS Visio, MS Project, Ganttproject.biz, Draw.io
- Real time statistics/KPI's: Power BI
I've learned that one piece of software doesn't cover the needs for proper managing a project.
Have a nice day,
I'm using lots of documents/techniques
WBS & PBS, resource tracking, risk register and many more.
Here you'll find interesting project documents via this link (provided by Axelos):
Have a nice day,
I do use the tools and techniques mentioned in the PRINCE2 framework,as and when they are required during the various project stages.
Hi certainelty "how to get things done", need to plan best way for this, i've implemented both the concept of Agile and Kandan board along woth my Prince2 one of my projects ...so i think the same can apply for a fast and on time project deliverables