Eco-Technology: Using and Re-using Technology

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Eco-Technology:  Using and Re-using Technology and Processes to Realize Improved Business Results

This inaugural blog post is to introduce the concepts of improving the work and performance of Project Practitioners.  Future posts will focus on the ideas, techniques and options for practitioners to gain efficiencies from their environment.  The objectives will include:

•    Practitioner asset management and allocation (Schedulers Portfolio)
•    Recycling technology and methodology
•    Linking past experiences and delivery with future ideas and strategy

Meanwhile, I hope you enjoy this first in the series of “Green EPM” .

Old Microsoft Project schedules:  what does one do with the archived schedules that once were the sun and moon of a project or program, but now just burn megabyte space on a disk drive somewhere? Old schedules may not be of much use, aside from historical records.  However, I presume a considerable amount of work went into the development, execution and closing of the schedules, as it reflected and controlled the performance of the related project.  This is really documentation of the practitioner, and his/her use and enhancements of project management competencies.

Why do we want to recycle old schedules and project data?  Asset management!  The data and presentation of content are the raw assets of the practitioner. It is also the performance record of stakeholders to the project.

What do you want to do?  Start with a new blank Microsoft Project file.  Insert past schedules: Tool bar <<insert; project; select project(s)>>.  Add as many projects as feasible.  This is where you can be creative, but mindful.  You want to bundle the projects accordingly.  For example, projects within similar clients, industries, time frames, etc.  You will also want to ensure your very large schedules are considered as they may dilute the value of being combined with other projects (size issues).  Now that you have consolidated past schedules into one file, you can slice and dice the data to extract unique project meta data.  Examples include: review your notes against a task, identifying unique, common and non-value notes.  Also, look for recurring slippage.  Analyze the WBS, and work packages.  Which resources (whether generic or actual) where more or less proficient?  The output of this exercise allows you, as a practitioner, build a referenceable library of past project experiences, by building your professional assets to be applied to future projects.

This exercise may take some time, but it is time well invested into building a portfolio view of your past (and best) practices and real performance against actual projects.  Recycle, reuse applies to schedules as well as the environment. Eco-technology: data from closed projects is still useful.

Posted By: Tim Cermak

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