The client was experiencing a period of rapid change and increased demands on a large IT department with extremely limited resources in relation to the perceived workload. This resulted in dissatisfied customers as well as IT staff members who were frustrated with the lack of progress on critical projects coupled with an increasing backlog. Long or short term planning was virtually nonexistent as a result of IT being in a constant “firefighting” mode.
The client was looking for a means of gaining knowledge of what was currently in progress along with status and priority for each of these projects. In addition, the client required a means of evaluating new requests from the user in order to apply its resources to those projects that were most important to the business as a whole. We were asked to develop the criteria for making these decisions as well as to design the process.
Through an extensive review of documentation and task lists along with interviews of both IT and business personnel, a list of issues affecting the ability of IT to support the business in both the short and long term were identified. The structure of the IT organization was evaluated in light of these issues as well as the expectations of the business. Finally a list of all current customer requests was developed along with the status of each based on the current staffing and processes. Based on the above information, a plan for implementing an improved Project Management Process to address the identified issues and organizational structure was defined. This began at the major project level and continued down to the management of sub projects and processes. The Project Management Process also subsequently identified broken processes for future evaluation and improvement. As input to the Project Management Process, a Project Evaluation Process was defined. By combining critical success factors with business unit input it provides an objective and quantifiable process for the evaluation, prioritization and implementation of customer requests. Finally, an implementation plan was provided that allowed for a phased approach ensuring early successes without overloading the limited resources.
Successful Business Solutions
The client received:
- Analysis of existing roadblocks
- Evaluation of IT team structure
- Identification of all existing projects including “unofficial” projects
- Process improvement plan for Project Management at all levels
- Project Evaluation Process
- Implementation Plan