IT project planning

According to Gartner, 82% of IT projects fail

There are many tech innovations occurring at an increasing rate that can radically affect, improve or put an organisation at risk. The old adage ‘failing to plan is planning to fail’ is especially true in IT projects. A large number of SMEs do not factor in any planning, have any thought of risk or other influences that the desired outcome may have.

According to technology research giant Gartner, 82% of IT projects fail and spending the time and money upfront before a project kicks off, more than often, would result in savings of money, time, frustrations and headaches! In fact doing some planning and advisory services may actually result in the project not needing to happen in the first place!

We have heard many times that a company wishes to implement a new tool, an innovative app or widget, adopt a new package, or “go to the cloud”. But more often than not no real thought or planning has been accounted for.

An architect is used to ensure we do not get our toilet in the lounge, so it makes sense that we should employ professionals or get some advice on that next application, user product, or package to intergrate with our current system. It may not work, may not be supported next year, have limited shelf life or be more costly than using simple spreadsheets!

A Project needs to be scoped, planned and developed with milestones, deliverables, accountability matrix and measurements. Otherwise it will inevitably fail by running over budget, over time, lack of testing or just not get complete. Implementing a CRM, job management tool or inventory application is not necessarily just picking one of the shelf that doenst mix with anything else, There needs to be time and resources allocated to make sure it is the right fit for your business and the end user experience.

There are a number of reasons why IT projects fail, below is a list of common areas:

1. What is the Project Purpose?

Far too often we've asked "Why are you undertaking this project?" Answer:- "Because so and so told me too." The ability to understand why the project is critical to the organisation's mission and how it fits into the overall strategic plan is a key component to its success.

2. No project sponsor.

There maybe resource to manage the project but there is no engagement from a project sponsor or no one person for the project manager to be accountable.

The executioners or leadership team do not even realise what they are doing is in fact a project and therefore lack the planning required.

3. Who is involved

If you assign the wrong person to a task, you are reducing your chances of success before the project even begins. Does the office manager have a vested interest in putting this in place that could reduce their workload? Do oyu have time to look at all technologies out to make. Have a clearly defined Project Director. Not a manager but someone to make sure the project is tracking and to ask questions!

4. Set expectations

Make sure each team member is clear on what is expected from them and when. A lot of times, organisations take on or think about tasks that get all stakeholders really excited and anxious – emotions take over but having clearly defind expectations and plan can alleviate much of the stresses.

Make sure everyone understands the limitations, the outcomes, the plan and their role in the project. This all starts of with planning to make sure you are going to the bathroom in the right place and the technology that you wish to bring to the organisation is going to add value.

Need help with your next IT Project? Contact us today:


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