Archive | May 20, 2011

Project Change Management In Action

Project Change Management photo

Photo by Julian Partridge

Have you noticed any deadlines being missed in your software development projects? This commonly occurs due to a week project change management procedure. It is the responsibility of the project manager to establish the correct steps and processes in order to control all the alterations being made on their project.

A simplified process starts out with change request forms. These detail exactly what alterations to be made that are quite similar to project proposal template structures (i.e. include full details of the alteration, background, etc.). The project manager is responsible for evaluating each of these changes and assigning severity to the change as well as a priority. They may also do an initial estimate of how much work is involved and if there is a financial/budgetary implication.

Some of the simpler changes which may be quickly implemented are often given approval for implementation straightaway by the project manager. This is completely at their own discretion and dependent on current team workload.

The norm however in the project change management procedure is to proceed to a weekly decision meeting. This is where each change request is evaluated by the project manager, the product manager and sometimes also the project sponsor. Each alteration needs to be discussed and decisions made on whether to implement or not. Some other changes may have to be dropped/deferred in order to facilitate new changes being implemented.

The project manager writes up the meeting minutes and distributes it to all interested parties. Change requests are usually maintained on in-house bug tracking systems so these must also be updated. Not all issues will be implemented straightaway but may actually be deferred to a later stage. In addition, if the project sponsor is not present at the meeting then any alterations requiring financial approval (i.e. if there are changes) will need their go-ahead in order to proceed.

Top 6 Major Categories For Performance Evaluation Phrases

Are you struggling to find the right performance evaluation phrases for annual review? You’re not alone! Many managers struggle to categorize and effectively appraise their direct reports. The key to getting it right is to use a couple of standard categories which can be applied to any industry sector or role.

The following phrases and categories form the basic structure for most appraisals (brief sample phrases are included for informative purposes):

  • Creativity in the workplace: She has always exhibited the ability to turnaround problems rapidly using novel solutions. She has improved the various work processes and operational procedures used by our team in the group.
  • Handling stress: He handles crisis situations in a mature and levelheaded way. He never loses his temper even when customers are highly agitated.
  • Being professional: She always has a respectful and professional attitude when dealing with customers and clients. She maintains and builds different working relationships both internally with colleagues and externally with clients who purchase our products.
  • Attendance/time management: He is always punctual for work. He is capable of managing his own time effectively to ensure the timely delivery of work and solutions. He encourages better time management techniques in those he is mentoring and working alongside.
  • Good communications: He is capable of open and respectful communications whether in e-mail communications, phone calls or face-to-face discussions. He encourages effective communication in the workplace of all direct reports and 360° feedback for all levels.
  • Being a leader/building teams: She commands the respect of all direct reports and proves to be an inspiration for their work ethic. She insists on collaborative involvement within the teams to solve problems. She always appreciates the contributions made by hard-working individuals.

The combination of performance evaluation phrases that you use will depend upon the role which the person is involved with. Some types of employment put more emphasis on specific categories and phrases which are crucial to the effective running and performance of these roles.

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