The Three Pillars of Successful Project Management in Physical Security
Project managers have the challenging task of bringing a diverse set of people and tasks together towards a successful outcome. Both cooperation and collaboration are necessary for the coordination of the moving pieces involved in the project’s success. The project manager’s key to success is to adhere to best practices, maintain visibility in the project, have strong communication with the team and client, foresee the issues that are likely to arise, and be adept in pulling the right resources to resolve them.
There are three important pillars of project management that should be considered before starting a project.
End users are often most interested in where they stand versus their peers as they enter the decision-making process. Typically, their expectations for benchmarking fall into two buckets: presentation and information.
- Build a dedicated team – proactively manage the team by understanding their roles as well as their personalities and performance expectations.
- Greater integration – reinforce more synergy between teams, add strength, and improve productivity.
- Point of Contact (POC) for clients – maintain positive relationships with potential and existing clients while eliminating the risks of miscommunication.
- Client politics – learn and utilize client politics and the client-integrator partner politics first to be successful.
- Unified alliance with integrator – have an in-depth understanding of objectives and points of view.
- Team alignment – the team should constantly communicate and deliver, and never miss any of the targets.
- Sustaining high performance – never be a bottleneck to project progress and deliverable timelines at any stage during the project. Communication, clarity, and trust are a project’s highest qualities.
- Point of Contact (POC) for stakeholders – be the main point of contact for all stakeholders; be trusted by each partner from each project angle.
- Strategic communication methods – develop strong communication methods that align with the personalities and communication styles of clients i.e., calls, texts, one-off calls, meeting series, email).
- Integrated Marketing Communication – develop and maintain a working relationship with both the integrator and the client so meetings and relationships are well-managed respectively, along with the broader audience calls.
- Customer Relationship Management (CRM) – before returning to the client with an update or recommendation, ensure that the messaging lines up with the partner or integrator.
- Avoid Scope Creep with efficient communication – manage scope conversations from the start and establish a governance for change management. Scope creep can lead to a more complex result, but it is always fixable. A proper change management process can mitigate project risks, such as cost and schedule overruns.
- Planning successful outcomes – before the project kicks off or moves forward, ensure that the discovery period (i.e., use case or priority deliverables) is discussed openly and understood by all stakeholders. Do not set a realistic schedule to communicate out until you have a firm grasp of each project deliverable with an achievable timeline.
- Develop measurable deliverables – Build and align to measurable project deliverables including time and a tangible link, such as a sprint with use cases.
- Communicate risk to stakeholders – keep up with the updates ahead of time to avoid any risks or delays. All stakeholders should be aware of and prepared for delays by the time a formal discussion takes place.
- Risk management – before there is an actual at-risk situation, identify project risks and design a risk mitigation strategy.
Plan ahead – make sure to get ahead of all tasks through task tracking files and highlight dependencies involved in the project.
- Acknowledge success – Celebrate project wins, appreciate progress, build on positive momentum, and give recognition to the best performing members of the team
There are many different components to success in project management. The key is knowing what they are and how best to use them so that your projects get delivered on time, within budget, and with the results expected by stakeholders. Good project management is not just about making sure you complete your deliverables, it’s also about building a team that communicates effectively and cares for the needs of clients and one another. If these three pillars are properly managed, the outcome is usually a satisfactory and successful result for all participants in the process.
Project Management Documentation – Here’s What You Need
The complexity of technology projects is requiring businesses in the Security industry to adopt focused initiatives around program and project management. Companies, therefore, need to establish a core set of practices and standards for all types of projects to ensure the sustainability of the expected pace while delivering quality performance.
Documentation is an important part of project management as it fulfills the two most crucial components of a project management system:
- Ensuring that project requirements are met
- Establishing traceability
The project documentation benefits the project – beyond well-governed workflow development. We have compiled a comprehensive list of documents and the role they play in project management activities, providing essential deliverables.
Essential Project Documents
The project charter officially authorizes the project while also delegating planning, execution, and management to the project manager. The project charter must include:
- Project purpose
- Project requirements
- Project budget
- Scope of the work
- Key deliverables
- Proposed schedule
- Potential risks
- Feasibility study
Moreover, the project charter encourages communication, making stakeholder engagement easier – a good project charter template provides a comprehensive summary of the essence of the project.
Work Breakdown Structure
A work breakdown structure (WBS) is the foundation of project planning, and resource management, and aids in the prevention of project scope creep. The WBS organizes the work into manageable chunks, which are usually measured in time.
The WBS ensures that no aspect of the project is ignored during the planning phase. Once the WBS is created, plan the relevant information:
- Start with the outcome of the project
- Break each milestone down
- Estimate timings
- Assign task owners
- Map your WBS in the desired format
The project management plan integrates the strategic management of the project and all the processes that are related to the venture including cost, timeline, and the scope of the project. This document serves primarily as a reference index as it includes all planning and project materials.
The project management plan must include:
- A summary of the project
- Expected milestones
- The roles of team members
- Tools to be used for management of the project
- Scheduled baseline along with work breakdowns
The Issue Tracker is a project document that records and tracks all issues.
Project managers can use the issue tracker to track and manage issues, ensuring that they are investigated and well handled. Throughout the project, the project manager will encounter unexpected gaps and inconsistencies that must be addressed so they do not impact the project’s triple constraints or performance.
A risk is an unforeseen event that has a positive or negative influence on the project’s triple constraints i.e., scope, time, and cost.
Risk can exist on two levels:
- At the level of individual constraints
- At the level of the overall project
The Risk Tracker keeps track of both the high-level and low-level risks. Moreover, the tracker is updated with results from quantitative analysis after risks are identified – later response plans are also updated on the same tracker. Furthermore, risk analysis helps in identifying risks that one could face during PM.
Action Item Tracker
An Action Item Tracker facilitates the project team to manage the follow-on activities.
An action item is a work that is completed as a result of a project team meeting where activities, issues, and dependencies are discussed. The action is not necessary to achieve the meeting’s goals; for instance, an issue or activity can have a follow-up activity.
Status Report Tracker
A common project management activity is a “weekly status report.”
A typical Status report includes:
- Overall Executive Summary Status
- Weekly Highlights and Lowlights
- RAG (Red, Amber, Green) assessment
- Next Actions
Progress Meeting Minute Template
A well-executed meeting concludes with prompt and perfectly documented Meeting Minutes. Meeting minutes are always generated and disseminated within 24 hours – following a meeting by professionals or project managers. The minutes of a project meeting includes a list of action items as well as a summary of discussed topics during the meeting.
Project Communication Plan
A project communication plan is a framework for your project’s communication operations. The strategy should aid in getting the appropriate information to the right person at the right time in a format that works perfectly for them.
There are a few key steps to follow when preparing a communication plan:
- Summarize the objectives – support remote team members and gather input from the project team
- Define the target audience – the project team, key stakeholders, and relevant internal departments
- Decide the required information – status, work in progress, issues, budget, and deadlines
- Measure success and improve – track and analyze your plan at regular intervals
Project Close-Out is the process of finalizing all activities for the project.
The Project Manager takes center stage and verifies that all project work is done efficiently, and the project has fulfilled its objectives.
Pivoting to a PMO (Project Management Office) that is business-focused will be an enhanced experience to deliver effective and successful projects. Using the best practices outlined here, organizations of different services as well end users can significantly increase the quality of their project’s overall performance and successful completion.
Atriade is a security consulting firm. We provide security system design services for access control, perimeter protection, video and visitor management, and other physical security technologies. We also provide security master planning, program development, risk assessments, professional services, and project management.
Our client portfolio includes Fortune 50 companies, Ivy League universities, and leading technology firms in Silicon Valley.
Visit us online at Atriade.com
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