Saturday 2 October 2021

Checklists in Project Management

Among the project management tools we have at our disposal, checklists are arguably the easiest and most productive way to consistently build your work. Checklists can be useful in almost any field of human activity. This is especially true for structures where repeatability and consistency form the basis of the workflow. However, they are still not used often enough in planning and project management.

Below is a high-level checklist that can be applied during the project planning phase:

1. Have the interests and needs of all stakeholders been considered and taken into account?

2. Is there an approved statement of goals and objectives of the project, which determines its scope, schedule and resources/budget?

3. Are the scales of possible allowable changes in the scope of work, schedule, resources and budget determined?

4. Are there clear criteria by which the degree of achievement of the project objectives will be monitored?

5. Are there roles and responsibilities for all members of the project team?

6. Has a carefully detailed work decomposition structure (WBS) been created (with the participation of key members of the project team)?

7. Is there a realistic calendar plan that takes into account possible options for getting out of critical situations and delays in deadlines? Is it WBS-based and optimized according to project parameters?

8. What are the main parameters that simplify the process of tracking key events, completed phases, external add-ons and project results included in the schedule?

9. Has the weekly project load been determined and agreed with project team members and managers?

10. Have strategies been developed to respond quickly to the occurrence of major negative factors that threaten the success of the project?

11. Has a change management system been developed? Has it been agreed with key stakeholders?

12. Is there a clear project management structure that clearly defines the role of sponsors and expectations regarding the frequency and format of reports?

One of the features of checklists is that they can be greatly expanded by internal hierarchy. In this case, a lower-level checklist can greatly facilitate the progress of any of the audits (for example, monitoring the expectations of key persons or managing risks). PMI, training centers, and PMOs would do well to promote the use of checklists to a greater extent. It would be much more convenient for project managers to use this method instead of reading a huge amount of methodological literature. Practice managers love this method, as it helps to improve the quality and consistently build the course of work.

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