Meeting your Project Deadlines!
What are the 3 constraints every customer is concerned about the most?
Well, these are Time, Cost and Quality. For every project, it’s very important to meet the deadlines. Each hour, minute and second is important for a project.
It is always advised to plan ahead!
There are several measures we should take care in order to meet project deadlines.
- Clarify the deadline with the customer: Make sure you understand the deadline given by customer. Generally, customers are having a due date of their own in order to launch a product or a service. Make sure you negotiate the deadline with the customer well.
- Make a plan: Analyze the requirements in detail. Breakdown the work into smaller tasks. Estimate the requirements well to come up with due dates. Make sure internal due dates are prior the due dates being given to the client.
- Never Over Commit: Never make over commitments. Always plan to commit less and deliver more. Spend time during estimations to make sure you provide them with greater accuracy rather than just ballparks.
- Always take buffer time: Give yourself an extra time. We never know when it’s internet issues or networks goes down or any other software or hardware related issues. It is always advisable to take around 10-15% of buffer time while estimating.
- Identify Risks: Make sure you identify risks at each stage of the project. If a risk is known earlier, it can be handled well.
- Execute the plan: In order to make sure you execute your plan well, make sure you note down all the due dates that are visible to all the team members. Everyday team should know if they are on schedule or not. Also, they should know what is expected from them and when it is expected.
- Track the progress on daily basis: It’s not good to know about the challenges at eleventh hour. A project manager should track the project progress on daily basis in order to know the challenges, task due dates. Each team member should be aware if they are on schedule or not.
- Communicate Challenges on time: Each team member should be proactive enough to communicate the challenges on time during project life cycle. They should not wait for the due date to communicate it.
- Keep customer in loop: It is important to make the customer aware of the challenges/risks coming along the way. They should know prior if we are going to deliver it on time or not. It should not be a surprise for them.
- Keep learning and improving: As you keep working on the project meeting the due dates, keep learning about making more accurate estimations, more effective communication, better planning and execution.