A Quick Guide To IT Project Management

IT Project Management

Written By Andrew Makar

Professional Cat Herder and an Agile Enthusiast with a keen interest in putting PM theory into actual practice.

IT project management is a process wherein you control, implement, and evaluate all the processes and aspects of everything related to IT—whether it’s for your business infrastructure, system, or project. It can become a very mundane, tedious, and complex process, and you must know what you’re going to do and manage the expectations of your responsibilities.

Thankfully, here’s a quick guide to IT project management that can help you out.

Definition Of An IT Project While IT businesses can use project management on IT infrastructure and systems, it’s often used for an IT project. A project is a set of tasks and processes a team should perform to achieve a goal. Project management comes in to help the team determine and manage primarily the people, time, and other resources needed for the completion of the project. If you’re looking for one, click here for cyber security in Seattle.  

The success of the project and IT project management is determined when deliverables have been produced or delivered before a deadline and according to the budget or within the allocated resources. 

For example, you have a business in Cape Town, and you need to improve its cybersecurity processes and policies. As a project manager, you need to decide immediately if you need to outsource and get help or do it on your own. If you do need help, visit this cyber security company in Cape Town to know how much resources you need to allocate for their services.

Five Phases Of An IT Project

Most IT project management will try to take hold of an IT project and set all tasks in five phases. These phases are the following:

  1. Initiation

It is the start of the project when you set the scope. At this phase, you’ll determine future challenges and limitations. Also, you’ll need to identify stakeholders, configure how you’ll report to them, and other technicalities in managing the project, like determining if there will be cybersecurity threats they’ll need to face while executing the project.

  1. Planning

In response to project variables like scope, limitations, and risks, you’ll plan how your team will work on the project to complete it. At this point, you’ll need to create schedules, set deadlines, and distribute tasks to team members.

  1. Execution

It is simply the phase where you’ll execute all the plans you have set in the planning phase.

  1. Monitoring And Controlling

In conjunction with the planning and execution phases, the monitoring and controlling phase is there to see if the execution phase is going according to plan. If not, the project manager and the team will be back in the planning phase to adjust expectations and limitations.

  1. Closing

As the name indicates, this phase is when the goals of the project have been achieved or if the project has been terminated. This phase includes some of the technicalities and other responsibilities involved in the project, like reports, paperwork, and resource reallocation.

Tools Used In IT Project Management

IT project management seems simple on paper, especially if you know the five phases. However, the tasks and processes involved in those phases can be too technical and time-consuming. Because of those, most project managers and IT teams utilize tools and software to get things done faster and easier. Some of the common tools and applications used in IT project management are the following:

  • Timesheets: IT projects are mostly time-based and have deadlines. Timesheets are there to ensure that members working on the team are spending their time focusing on the tasks delegated to them. Also, it makes it easier for managers to determine how much money they need to pay off contractors and other third-party employees.
  • Workload Manager: The pay of most people involved in the project will be determined by their timesheets, while a workload manager is there to determine the difficulty and intensity of the tasks assigned to them and even find invalid tasks that need to be replaced. The workload manager also makes it simpler to assign resources where needed.
  • Gantt Chart: Timesheets and workload tools often give a manager a brief overview of what’s happening with the members and resources. Meanwhile, Gantt charts can give them a graphical view of everything and allow them to track tasks faster, especially during the planning, execution, and monitoring phase.
  • Project Dashboard: Typically, a project dashboard is the main tool where everyone can see everything—from plans, designation, information, and resources. Managers can view the reports and progress of the project here, while workers can communicate and gather all the information they need to proceed with their tasks.

There are other specific tools that an IT project manager can use to make their lives easier and guarantee the team’s success.

The Triple Constraints

As you might have noticed, three things have been constantly mentioned in the previous sections. They are scope, cost, and time. These are often referred to as the triple constraints or project management triangle that most IT project managers must always consider when handling a project.  

Working with these constraints in mind is key to success. After all, most projects will have a set budget, a deadline, and deliverables. Suppose the project consumes more than the project’s allocated budget and resources. In that case, the project manager will still fail even if the deadline is met and the deliverables are produced.  

Conclusion

Those are the things you need to know when managing an IT project. Consider this quick guide a simple framework of what a project manager like you need to do, and be sure to look up other resources to help you further with this work.

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