The vast majority of Brazilian companies are focused on services and, among them, many work with projects. That is, they are services that have a beginning, middle and end determined with the customer. Unlike on-time services such as installing an air conditioner, projects tend to be more complex and use many features such as building a building. So we decided to write about how to set up a project.
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Precisely for this reason, it is important to build a project in a structured and complete way. Because they occur over time and consume different resources, the projects have intrinsically a high risk factor. The longer and more expensive the project, the higher the level of planning control used in accordance with the best practices of the project management, or PMBOK.
However, most companies, especially small and medium-sized ones, carry out simpler and short-term projects that can benefit largely from only a few good project design practices. Let's see below a suggestion of how to set up a project:
STEP 1 - Deliverable List Scope
The first step in setting up a project is to define what should actually be delivered to the customer. That is, palpable elements that are part of the final delivery and also the intermediary. Typically, deliverables consist of reports, spreadsheets, presentations, screens for approval, contracts, etc.
Let's start putting together a fictional project here in the post to exemplify. A typical case that everyone lives being hired or hired to do is the development of a website. If we are to do the complete service from design to programming, we can have the following deliverables:
- Layout in PSD for approval
- Document with the texts of the site
- First scheduled version of testing site
- Final website version for approval
2 STAGE - Team Allocation
Once you know what your project deliverables are, things start to get simpler. Now, you must define which will be responsible for each of them. Let's continue filling out the data:
- Layout: Designer Julia
- Creation of Texts: Draftsman Andréia
- Programming: Developers Carlos and Roberto
3 STAGE - Hours Survey
In this next step, together with your team, you must estimate how many hours will be needed for each step. This will influence your schedule and also the cost of the project. Therefore, as each project has a different scope, we will work in this case with a simple site with only 5 pages and a standard form of contact.
- Julia - 10 hours
- Andréia - 6 hours
- Carlos and Roberto - 20 hours each
4 STAGE - Creation of a Cronogram
Now that you know what you have to deliver, how many and which professionals you will need, and your hours of dedication, you just have to check each person's current allocation to designate the working hours and get the calendar. If your project starts on 04 / 03 / 2018, let's see how your schedule might look.
You know that Julia has another project and can only dedicate 2 hours a day. So the first week is all hers. From 04 / 03 / 2018 to 09 / 03 / 2018, the design work will be done.
Already Andréia is free and can do the whole work in just one day that will be on 10 / 03 / 2018 day.
And Carlos and Roberto can dedicate more 5 hours a day, that is, 2,5h each, thus needing 5 more days. In this case, your project would be delivered 15 / 03 / 2018 day. However, we have to add the two weekends. That is, the probable date would be 19 / 03 / 2018. If you want to see more about creation of schedules, click here.
Now each deliverable must be approved and in this case we will give one day for approval and one more day for internal review. So we have 6 more days and more a weekend, leaving the final date of the project for 27 / 03 / 2018!
These 4 steps will give you the general foundation for setting up a project simply, but it already has all the most important controls for managing a customer's expectations. This is also the basis to follow when pricing your project, a topic we talked about more deeply in an article about cost management in project management.