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Agile methodologies and Waterfall project management

Given the diversity of project management methodologies and the individuality of each project, I believe that your grounds for concern about the methodologies that our team uses to successfully implement our project are unwarranted. In a summary, I will point out arguments about this.

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The digital transformation of HR, how not to get frustrated with new technologies

Before introducing new technology, it is necessary to calculate the risks and budget for errors in advance. Now there are many digital products on the market, but not all of them are universal: each company must find its solutions.

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Scrum Master answers questions from colleagues about the Scrum framework

According to the Scrum Guide, the Scrum Master role is responsible for training other staff on Scrum topics. The Scrum Master role must know the whole of Scrum in-depth and be able to advise everyone else. I present to you sample questions to the newly appointed Scrum Master in the organization and his sample answers to his colleagues. Additional Scrum issues: here.

Can I keep my current role as a project manager and not participate in Scrum roles? Kimberly Jones, project manager

Hi Kimberly, yes, you can keep your position, but as the whole organization is transforming, you will also need to be a part of it. Project management in Scrum is different from the way you know it. Also, your position is important for the very integration of Scrum thinking into the organization. After a series of training, you will be part of the people who will pass on the Scrum methodology ( to their teams and will follow the optimization process in their teams.

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Introduction to production management

Production management includes management of the stages of design, development, and testing. The BVOP product management certification program includes these additional topics, which makes the certification organization unique and different. See the BVOP Ultimate Guide for reference. (BVOP: And taking the certification exam still involves many more topics. In this article, we will discuss only production management.

What is production? – it is a process of creating goods and offering services.
Production is a process in which the transformation of input resources is performed to obtain the output of different types of finished goods and services. Input resources are also called factors of production. At the end of the production process, the results of the transformation processes are obtained, namely – material goods and services.

Factors of production are generally classified into:

Input resources – raw materials, semi-finished products, fuels, energy resources, etc.
They are consumed in the course of the production process. The characteristic of them is that their participation in the final product can be determined directly. They are kept in the company’s accounting as current assets.

Technical and technological equipment – these are the tools that are used in the production process without participating directly in the final product. Their participation is reported indirectly through the depreciation deductions accrued in the cost of finished products: – buildings, machinery and equipment, vehicles, and others, which are depleted morally and physically. These are the fixed assets of the company. Reference: “Product deployment and tasks in production processes”,

Labor force (human resources) – participate directly in the production process, as contractors or as management staff. They are included in the finished product through their labor, reported as wages.
The concept of production emphasizes the management of the production process and includes many and varied activities related to preparation (design and planning), production, and implementation, as well as control over materials, equipment, people, finances, and information to achieve certain goals. economic results. When it comes to such activities, the term Production Management is usually used. Reference: Definition and tasks of production management
Production management covers all these activities related to the creation of goods and the provision of services through the transformation of input resources into finished products.

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Agile and Waterfall Project Management and value

Agile and Waterfall project management are the two main areas of product development that follow a process. We call this process project management. However, project management includes various practices.

Special sections on business value have already been published in PMBOK, BVOP Ultimate Guide, and the Scrum Guide. Yes exactly. Business value is already part of modern project management.

Project management strategies

The different strategies and ideas for adding business value are directly dependent on the characteristics of the specific work process. If the latter is carried out according to the rules of the waterfall method, it means that we will have to adapt to a project with pre-set and strictly set parameters, where deviations and manifestations of creative and untested approaches are highly undesirable, creating unnecessary risks.

The success of such projects must be based on the principles of security, experience, predictability, and routine. Innovation has a place always and everywhere, but in this regard, it is useful when it comes to automation, acceleration, rather quantitative changes in parameters because the quality is not much room for concession. In this sense, the terms of reference that we must comply with are the following:

Pre-determined budget (approved and signed expenditure);
Pre-set product parameters (finished product design – considered, agreed, approved);
Pre-defined stages / steps / events;
The necessary resource is calculated (human – how many and what kind of people, staff; material; time);
All the benefits and all the potential trade-offs, negative effects – clear in advance, no surprises.

To give business value to a business, we need to focus on 2 groups of measures/ideas:

Measures to ensure the correct implementation of the project (without deviations). Here is the value for which we took the project – its price, for example.
Measures that would add value beyond what is already known and planned, in the course of the project itself or after its completion.

In terms of the qualities of the teams that would add business value to the project, I would focus on the following 3 topics:

Project team

We need a disciplined, responsible team with strictly and divided responsibilities among its members. Each of them must be aware of the importance of implementation in time and accordance with the requirements. Any distraction, delay, lack of dedication, focus can have fatal consequences for the result. The first two definitions are more about attitude, attitude towards work, style of work. A strict division of tasks is needed for clarity and predictability. Everyone should be aware of which element they are responsible for and in what time frame they should provide the result. Ie unlike the self-organizing teams in Scrum, which strive to achieve good cooperation in the course of the project, here you need a preliminary guarantee of success. This group of qualities contributes to the accurate implementation of the project and ensures the value for which the work on it is undertaken (they belong to category A)).

The added business value for the project

However, the additional business value is very useful, apart from the originally planned one, it would be the narrow specialization of the experts, which can in some cases stimulate their proactivity. I mean specialists who have such in-depth knowledge of the specific activity/product that they could achieve the desired result according to the set parameters, using technology or knowledge that will save some resource (in general, time). An experienced programmer could choose to use reusable code; in construction, an experienced craftsman could apply a technique to reduce the amount of material without affecting the quality of performance, on the contrary. Here, highly specialized knowledge contributes in both directions – accurate execution A), but also adds value due to saved resources B). I would oppose this narrow specialization to some extent to the idea of ​​cross-functional experts, I do not find them so valuable from Ch. point of the objectives of this type of project.

The quality of the project

Quality complements the first two themes. I would put it this way: “Seniors go ahead, beginners wait.” Apart from close specialization and responsible attitude, the rich previous experience would be invaluable. It complements the first two qualities and is a kind of guarantee for their effective implementation. It is not sensible, with well-defined quality and time requirements, for the initiative to be taken by inexperienced people to be trained in the course of the project… This increases the risks of delays or mistakes that can increase the time or financial limits. retreated.

From the point of view of the actions of all management roles that would add business value to the project of the teams, I indicate the following 3 groups:

We need an experienced professional to carry out controls/inspections daily (especially in the presence of a larger project requiring more people with different backgrounds), which would help increase security and respond quickly to potential backlogs or other problems. The aim is to constantly monitor whether the process is going according to plan. This is in the direction of business value in category A). The project manager may not increase the pre-agreed “value” of the project, but at least he will contribute to not reducing it due to losses and inaccurate implementation. Here I would add the general figure of the project manager (in some companies that perform translations from a foreign language, for example, it is the project manager who monitors compliance with all terms and conditions, may even raise the issue of quality, even if he does not know the language).

The stimulating management model applied by the managers is essential for good results. In addition to control and discipline, experts need motivation. Adhering to ambitious deadlines and strictly set steps can be exhausting, sometimes tedious. After the end of each project, it is good that the good work is additionally rewarded so that the employees see the meaning and in the future to give their best, to be appreciated. An additional bonus for timely and accurate performance (even if it is not monetary – it can be social – some extra day off or other types of gesture/privilege) would contribute. Usually, loyal and strict employees are very keen to receive the same attitude that they invest. (The opposite is also true – in a modest way you can motivate a creative person to creative approaches if you provide him with enough free environment for work). I also include training and other investments in human resources in this category.

The scope and type of the project

Depending on the scope and type of the project, I think that business (or other types) analysts could add value to give ideas on how the task could be performed according to the set requirements, but at the same time to save some resources. It is the management, according to the nature of the specific project, could request research from specific staff who could give good ideas based on their experience. If there are no such persons in the organization, for some projects the services of external experts (such as tax consultants) can be used to add value. They must constantly look for ways, using the available human resources, experience, and knowledge of employees, to direct them in the direction of seeking such additional values. I started with business analysts and economists, but not only on this plane can value be added. I immediately think of an elementary example that I have personally seen – in the process of construction and repair work, I remember how one of the leading craftsmen/specialists directed his subordinates to use insulation material (leftover from previous sites – with the desired project quality) but without affecting the price they want. Ie utilization of any surpluses – whether in the field of construction, whether through good tax advice, whether by automating processes (through machines that do the same job, but faster). This is probably an attitude that can be nurtured in employees.

In terms of potential initiatives, events, or practices that the organization can organize to add business value to the project, I indicate the following 3 groups:

To increase business value, during or after the project, the organization could rely on good advertising. If her client was a well-known company, she could use this as an argument for her future projects. The use of resources or funds of high environmental value would also be good publicity. If there is a marketing department, the company can entrust it with the generation of similar ideas or use the services of an external expert or company. Any type of advertising event would be very useful and will certainly increase the value of the project many times over if it is well thought out and strategic.

Investment / innovation / investment in innovation. Any events and initiatives organized to achieve one of the three goals are promising when it comes to business value. The latter can increase in the course of the specific project, it can bear fruit in subsequent projects. The promotion of an innovation invented based on certain projects could be promoted and even offered for sale. In this way, the company will do the work for which it is committed but will add more value if it promotes its innovative ideas. Such a phenomenon is more and more common in the new, increasingly digitalized world, in which software is created for almost everything. There are many examples of how a certain legal or organizational company activity (which is characterized by many similar procedural chains) is improved and facilitated at times by creating software. Once created, it can be promoted and offered to others in the guild who do not have the ideas, time, or desire to create their own. So they choose to pay a subscription to use the software, and this is a significant business value for the company, often exceeding the income from its activities.

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Attempt to attract foreign investment to expand the scope of work. While in the above point I emphasized the benefits of investing in innovative improvements and automation, here the emphasis is on attracting capital, using the success of current projects. To some extent, this idea is covered by advertising, but to achieve a specific goal – to expand the scope of the company. High quality, success, specialization, discipline, and marketing events have brought considerable trust to our company in the market. It can use just that (for example, if it has made computers) and expand its field (by starting production of monitors, mice, headphones, or other peripherals), taking advantage of increased public confidence.