Following up on our lecture from 7/11, here is a great article on the three parts of the Project Management Trade-offs.
Our last lecture addressed an important project management, and that is the fact that we are often faced with a certain constraint in our project that we are unable to change. A prime example of this is the time constraint in our projects this quarter. We have a deadline of August 15th for completion of our event and this cannot be changed. Therefore the only parts of the triangle that we have control over are the scope and the cost.
The article I have attached has some great suggestions for how to optimize Time, Scope, and Cost.
For our project we have to be sensitive to not only time, but cost as well because any expenses we incur will go against the money we actually raise for our charity. With that in mind we must figure out what we can reasonably do for our event that fits the timeframe we have, which is not negotiable, and is low cost, so that we actually raise money.
Some examples for optimizing your time, provided by the article are:
- Shorten the durations of tasks (usually a reflection of reduced scope or increased/more efficient resources).
- Overlap tasks so that they can be worked on simultaneously.
- Remove tasks to meet the finish date (usually a reflection of reduced scope).
- Assign additional resources.
- Decrease the amount of work assigned (usually a reflection of reduced scope or more efficient resources).
In a compressed timeframe, like we have for this project, being efficient is essential. In order to be efficient we need to know what resources we need, what tasks need to be accomplished, what we want our end result to look like, and the timetable for everything. In class, we discussed the Work Breakdown Structure as one of the best way of figuring out all of this.
The WBS helps evaluate time, cost, and scope, along with helping to helping to organize the resources you already have. One of the first things our group did, after we came up with some initial event ideas, was to determine what we needed to put on the event. We divided the resources into 2 categories, what we could provide through our own connections and what we needed help with from our charity. Then we evaluated the experiences and interests of our group members, in order to establish rules. Finally, we established a rough schedule of when things need to be accomplished and what those deliverables were.
I would love to know what others thought about how the three aspects of project management applied to their own projects and what strategies people have come up with so far.