Project Communication Management

Progress reports describe what the project team has accomplished during a certain period.

If a team of three people are working together on one particular project task, they have three communications channels. If you add two more people to their team, you would have ten communications channels.

Performance reporting involves collecting and disseminating performance information, including status reports, progress measurement, and forecasting

Forecasts predict future project status and progress based on past information and trends

Communications planning involves determining the information and communications needs of the stakeholders

Project archives are a complete set of organized project records that provide an accurate history of the project.

Status reports addresses where the project stands in terms of meeting scope, time, and cost goals

The body of the e-mail should be as clear and concise as possible and you should always reread your e-mail before you send it is a guideline that will help you use e-mail more effectively

Lessons-learned report is a reflective statement documenting important things the project team has learned from working on the project

Information distribution involves making needed information available to project stakeholders in a timely manner

Project team members may become stagnant or develop Groupthink if there are no conflicting viewpoints on various aspects of a project.

Running Effective Meetings:
– Determine if a meeting can be avoided
– Define the purpose and intended outcome of the meeting
– Determine who should attend the meeting
– Provide an agenda to participants before the meeting
– Prepare handouts and visual aids, and make logistical arrangements ahead of time
– Run the meeting professionally
– Build relationships

Managing stakeholders involves managing communications to satisfy the needs and expectations of project stakeholders and to resolve issues

Because communication is so important on projects, every project should include a communications management plan, which is a document that guides project communications

As the number of people communicating increases above three, the number of communications channels increases rapidly.

When using the smoothing mode, the project manager de-emphasizes or avoids areas of differences and emphasizes areas of agreement

Managers who are very competitive or autocratic in their management style might favor forcing mode approach to conflict handling

Withdrawal mode is the least desirable conflict-handling mode, because project managers retreat from an actual or potential disagreement

An issue log is a tool to document and monitor the resolution of project issues.

When using the confrontation mode, project managers directly face a conflict using a problem-solving approach that allows affected parties to work through their disagreements

Project Quality Management

Most information technology products cannot reach 100 percent reliability, but stakeholders must define what their expectations are.

Capability Maturity Model Integration (CMMI) addresses software engineering, system engineering, and program management

Performance addresses how well a product or service performs the customer’s intended use

Projects that use Six Sigma principles for quality control normally follow a five-phase improvement process called DMAIC, which stands for Define, Measure, Analyze, Improve, Control

process adjustments corrects or prevents further quality problems based on quality control measures

The cost of evaluating processes and their outputs to ensure that a project is error-free or within an acceptable error range is called appraisal cost

American industry did not recognize the theories of Demming until Japanese manufacturers started producing products that seriously challenged American products, particularly in the auto industry

Fitness for use means a product can be used as it was intended

User acceptance testing is an independent test performed by end users prior to accepting the delivered system

Rework often results in requested changes and validated defect repair, resulting from recommended defect repair or corrective or preventive actions. It can be very expensive, so the project manager must strive to do a good job of quality planning and quality assurance to avoid this need.

A control chart is a graphic display of data that illustrates the results of a process over time

Functionality is the degree to which a system performs its intended functions

Ishikawa is best known for his 1972 book Guide to Quality Control. He developed the concept of quality circles and pioneered the use of fishbone diagrams

Normal distribution is a bell-shaped curve that is symmetrical regarding the mean or average value of the population (the data being analyzed)

In project quality management,quality control involves monitoring specific project results to ensure that they comply with the relevant quality standards while identifying ways to improve overall quality.

Organizations that successfully implement Six Sigma principles have the ability and willingness to adopt two seemingly contrary objectives at the same time is a principle of Six Sigma.

Benchmarking generates ideas for quality improvements by comparing specific project practices or product characteristics to those of other projects or products within or outside the performing organization

Quality assurance process of project quality management involves periodically evaluating overall project performance to ensure that the project will satisfy the relevant quality standards

Integration testing occurs between unit and system testing to test functionally grouped components

External failure cost refers to a cost that relates to all errors not detected and not corrected before delivery to the customer

Difference between Leader and Manager

A leader focuses on long-term goals and big-picture objectives while inspiring people to reach those goals
A manager deals with the day-to-day details of meeting specific goals

System Philosophy

System philosophy is thinking about things as a system

System thinking is taking a holistic view of carrying out projects within the context of the organization

Advantages of Using Formal Project Management

Better control of financial, physical, and human resources
Improved customer relations
Shorter development times
Lower costs
Higher quality and increased reliability
Higher profit margins
Improved productivity
Better internal coordination
Higher worker morale (less stress)

Ten characteristics Organizational Culture

Organizational culture is a set of shared assumtions, values, and behaviors that characterize the functioning of an organization.

Ten characteristics Organizational Culture:

Member identity: The degree to which employees identify with the organization as a whole rather than with their type of job or profession. For example, a project manager or team member might feel more dedicated to his or her company or project team than to their job or profession, or they might not have any loyalty to a particular company or team. As you can guess, an organizational culture where employees identify more with the whole organization are more conducive to a good project culture.

Group emphasis: The degree to which work activities are organized around groups or teams, rather than individuals. An organizational culture that emphasizes group work is best for managing projects.

People focus: The degree to which management

Project Management Knowledge Area

Source: IT Project Management, 5th edition, Kathy Schwalbe

Project scope management involves defining and managing all the work required to complete the project successfully

Project time management includes estimating how long it will take to complete the work, developing and acceptable project schedule, and ensuring timely completion of the project.

Project cost management consists of preparing and managing the budget for the project.

Project quality management ensures that the project will satisfy the stated or implied needs for which it was undertaken

Project human resource management is concerned with making effective use of the people involved with the project.

Project communications management involves generating, collecting, disseminating, and storing project information.

Project risk management includes identifying, analyzing, and responding to risks related to the project.

Project procurement management involves acquiring or procuring goods and services for project from outside the performing organizations

Project integration management is an overarching function that affects and is affected by all of the other knowledge areas.

Manage IT Department

Today, I work as an IT Manager at a Mobile Content Provider company. My team include 7 persons including me. All with programming background such as Delphi, Visual C++, Visual Basic, ASP .NET and J2ME. Using SQL Server 2005 as a company database.

Nobody has experience in implementing project management and software development life cycle. All of the system and software products are built based on adhoc process. Every project needs one man show or we call it hero. If that man goes to other company i will bet the project will fail. No documentation at all.

In that company almost there is no business process. If there is something wrong with system or even PC or customer complain. The employee of other department only has one business process to solve it e.g. call IT person. Even water in dispencer if there is empty, they call IT. Buy food in the evening, just call IT person.

But, the company is growing fast and earn big revenue. So many project or software product already launch and go to the market. All is controlled by Korean guy, a very powerfull and smart person. But, he only knows IT very small. No experience in IT. but good business man. He encourages the employee to be an profesional. How to be an professional ? I remember two thing. One is “Talk with Number” and the other is “Don’t Say Maybe”

Talk with number means every statements should be quantitative. For example, It’s wrong if you say, today traffic is little. You have to say today traffic 50% lower than usual. Another example, you can’t say the server is busy. You have to quatify it, like the server know consume 90% of CPU process.

Don’t say maybe means there is only yes or no, there no between those. For example, you can’t say the problem maybe caused by bandwidth is full, you have to say the problem is caused by bandwidth is full.

Since last year, I take master degree of Information Technology at University of Indonesia. I learn a lot of teory. I try to implement the theory at the company. But it’s very hard.

Now, I give a training of UML & rational unified process to on of IT member. and I already take project management training last year.

My vision this year is, implement project management, make the IT team collaborate and work as a team while building a project using the powerfull of UML and maybe agile or rational unified process.

Wish me luck… and to be continue.

Nokia 6120 Classic Review

Nokia 6120 classic is the cheapest HSDPA (3.5 G) hand phone in the world (only IDR 2.185.000 at Feb 8th, 2008). With the elegant black chrome. Besides it’s very light in weight and thin.

You can see all the spesification on http://www.nokia.co.id/A4617036. Althought, it’s stated UL/DW maximum is 384 kbps, when I tried it to connect to my laptop and tried to test the bandwidth using XL and bandwidth tester in www.telkomspeedy.com give the result almost 1 Mbps.

speedy-jakarta-2.jpg

Speed Test to singapore :

speedtest-singapore.jpg

Why Nokia give the specification UL/DW maximum 384 kbps, so far I know the bandwidth rate for HSDPA can be 10 times bigger than that.

10 Tips Menjadi IT Manager yang Lebih Baik

Diterjemahkan seenaknya dari 10 tips being a better IT Manager

IT Manager sering disibukkan oleh aktifitas harian dan melupakan untuk memimpin stafnya. Apakah Anda seorang profesional yang berpengalaman atau yang baru saja jadi IT Manager, tips berikut akan membantu Anda memanage tim Anda secara efektif.

1. Habiskan waktu (dan uang) mendevelop orang
IT adalah bidang yang selalu berubah, dan banyak pekerja IT mencintai untuk mempelajari teknologi yang baru dan mengimprovisasinya. Kebanyakan orang, belajar tidak hanya menyenangkan, tapi suatu kebutuhan untuk melakukan pekerjaan yang lebih baik. IT Manager harus memberikan budget untuk training dan development dan mendorong staff untuk berpartisipasi dalam event – event tertentu & jika memungkinkan.

Jika budget Anda terbatas, carilah workshop dan presentasi yang gratis, set up in-house training, dan get creative dengan dana Anda. Don’t forget about cross-training exercises as well. Walaupun dalam sebuah group IT yang besar, ada pekerjaan yang hanya dilakukan oleh satu orang secara rutin. Pastikan yang lain tahu apa yang harus dilakukan jika orang tersebut tiba – tiba tidak ada dalam jangka waktu yang lama.

2. Cari tahu apa yang benar-benar dilakukan oleh Staf Anda
Walaupun Anda tidak perlu menjadi master untuk setiap tugas yang dihandle (lihat item berikutnya), Anda seharusnya mengerti yang biasa dilakukan oleh staf Anda. Jika sekarang tidak Anda lakukan, biasakanlah diri Anda untuk mengetahui setiap tanggung jawab tiap orang. Minta anggota team untuk menjelaskan dan mendemonstrasikan tugas penting — seperti data backups.

Penulis (bukan saya) sekali waktu pernah mendapatkan karyawan yang dipindahkan ke sub-group penulis. Segera setelah pindah, penulis mulai untuk bekerja dengannya dan mempelajari job role nya. Satu bulan setelah itu, selama periode key production, karyawan tersebut mendapatkan tragedi yang berurutan — orang tua nya meninggal dan developed pneumonia. Tanpa backup, saya terjun langsung dan menyelesaikan pekerjaannya dengan pengetahuan yang saya pelajari selama bulan pertama dan bantuan dari yang lainnya.

Hasilnya, saya mendapatkan respek yang sangat bagus dari karywan, yang sebelumnya memiliki pengalaman negatif dengan manajemen. Mengerti apa yang staff Anda lakukan tidak hanya meningkatkan respek mereka terhadap Anda, tapi juga membuat Anda lebih credible sebagai seorang manager pada saat menghadapi situasi atau keputusan yang sulit.

3. Jangan Melakukan untuk Mereka
Jika Anda berasal dari “in the trenches” karyawan IT menjadi seorang Manager, hindari kecenderungan untuk mengekang secara cepat. Pengetahuan Anda dan skill Anda mungkin melebihi staff Anda, tapi Anda harus menolong staff Anda untuk belajar dan berkembang. Ada garis tipis antara coaching dan doing. Seorang manager yang baik akan mengetahui perbedaannya

Selama awal training period dimana Anda lebih terlibat dalam melakukan pekerjaan harian, delegasikan secara tepat dan buat strategi training untuk men transfer pekerjaan ke staff Anda.

4. Mengerti bisnis dan Buat Mereka Mengenal Anda
Memang sebuah klise, tapi semua IT Managers harus mengerti business untuk membangun system dan infrastructure yang men support tujuan business. Anda seharusnya juga memperlihatkan report bagaimana efek pekerjaan mereka terhadap tujuan business perusahaan dan memastikan business administrator mengerti apa yang IT lakukan untuk mereka. Perlihatkan aktifitas departemen Anda melalui laporan tahunan, regular communications, dan frequent project updates.

5. Perlakukan communication sebagai jalan dua arah yang sibuk dan bergerak dengan cepat.
Informasi bukan comodity terbatas yang harus Anda simpan-simpan. Harus mengalir secara bebas dan mudah antara management dan workers. Jika Anda merasa bahwa Anda tidak mendapatkan informasi yang penting, pikirkan cara untuk meningkatkan communication. Sebaliknya, jangan menyimpan informasi, kecuali itu sebuah rahasia. Apa yang kelihatannya tidak relevant bagi Anda mungkin relevant bagi orang lain. Reward information sharing between your direct reports.

Download free dictionary di Hand phone Anda browse ke http://blog.plugie.com/td.php

6. Dorong setiap orang untuk bekerja sebagai team
The whole really is greater than the sum of its parts (red. ngerti kan?). Mendorong kolaborasi dan teamwork menbantu memindahkan silo-like isolation yang biasanya terjadi di technical organisations. Cross-functional teams benar – benar penting karena perubahan kecil di satu area ber – impact pada yang lain. Berikan penghargaan terhadap usaha untuk berkoloborasi dan men – develop lingkungan di mana pekerja merasa nyaman bertanya dan membantu lainnya. Frustasi biasanya akibat jika seorang anggota team mengetahui sesuatu yang orang lain menghabiskan banyak waktu untuk menyelesaikannya. Teamwork adalah bahan bakar dari komunikasi.

7. Berikan feedback secara reguler dan biarkan karyawan mengetahui apa yand Anda minta
Beberapa IT jobs membuat orang seperti pulau. Mereka bekerja pada sebuah project atau tugas sendiri dan tidak berinteraksi dengan manager mereka ataupun rekan kerja. Pastikan staff Anda mengetahui apa yang sedang mereka lakukan dan apa yang dipelukan untuk improvement. Hal ini bisa menjadi percakapan biasa, formatl performance reviews, atau pujian.

Jika seseorang tidak memiliki tahu tujuan dari tugasnya, pastikan orang itu tahu apa tujuannya. Staff members tidak menyadari tugas yang Anda berikan minggu lalu adalah prioritas. Berikan tugas secara jelas dan langsung. Pada saat karyawan menyelesaikan tugasnya, pastikan mereka tahu betapa Anda berterima kasih padanya. Geeks need love too!

8. Hire well
Jika Anda belum pernah merekrut orang, sebaiknya Anda bertanya dan pelajari bagaimana caranya. Merekrut orang yang tidak bagus akan lebih tidak bermanfaat daripada tidak merekrut sama sekali. Technical skill hanya bagian kecil. Anda harus tahu jika orang tersebut bisa atau tidak bergabung dengan team. Akan berguna jika anggota team Anda ikut terlibat dalam proses rekrutasi jika dimungkinkan. Staf anda dapat membantu Anda menentukan apakah aplicant nya dapat berhubungan baik dengan yang lainnya dan memiliki skill yang tepat.

9. Mengerti praktek IT terbaik tapi tidak hanya menjadikannya buzz words
Learn and understand the best practices that apply to your environment and measure yourself and your department against them. Explore ITIL and determine whether you should implement at least portions of it in your department. Ensure your disaster recovery plan is up to date and ready for action. Perform regular security assessments. Proceed with caution, however; throwing around buzzwords won’t gain you any clout. You must truly understand the ideas and their application to your environment. Then, plan and implement appropriate related changes.

10. Menjadi seorang Project Manager yang Baik
Apakah project terakhir Anda mengalami kegagalan?. Most projects, particularly IT ones, don’t fail because the project itself was bad. Kebanyakan kegagalan adalah akibat dari kelemahan project managemen. Jika Anda belum memiliki training project management formal, cari dan invest di program yang baik.

Jangan berfikir hanya dengan mengadakan regular meeting, Anda sedang memanage sebuah project. Dan karena IT biasanya memiliki banyak project dibanding yang lain, pastikan untuk melatih lead workers dengan keahlian dasar project management jada Anda dapat mendelegasikan bagian tertentu dari project atau bahkan keseluruhan project ke dalam control mereka.

(Penerjemah:
tempat training IT Project Managemen
Business Modeling with the UML, v1.0
)