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Hacker's Guide to Project Management

Hacker's Guide to Project Management

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Published by Nauroz Khan
Methods that how to manage a project at any level.....
Methods that how to manage a project at any level.....

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Categories:Topics, Art & Design
Published by: Nauroz Khan on Mar 12, 2010
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial


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There should be a number of defined, tangible products from the development work.

These are known as deliverables. Obviously the working system makes one or more of

these, but there should be a number of others, which will probably be documents.

As well as being the actual solid products of your work, the deliverables fulfil two

very useful roles: they are valuable as communication tools, and they provide firm

checks on the project’s progress. You can tie estimates, plans and payments to the

delivery of the first version of each deliverable, and (even better) to the delivery of the

tested or reviewed version which the user or customer accepts.

If you orient your work towards deliverables in this way, you will have much clearer

indications of success or failure. You will also avoid the subjective evaluation which is

always a problem if you concentrate, instead, on the services you provide.

You can always define your work in terms of deliverables. For example, if you are

doing maintenance work, look at how you can batch up fixes into regular deliveries. If

you are testing, you can deliver a test report with a list of the errors found.

You must always understand who is the user of each

deliverable. Know your audience, and deliver what will be

most useful to them (and not much more!). Don’t create

deliverables for their own sake or to keep the QA Manager

happy, but think about the purpose of each deliverable,

and concentrate on creating something which meets that

purpose. If you find this difficult to do because the

deliverable seems to have more than one purpose, then

consider splitting it into two or more parts.

Keep your eyes on the prize! Don’t get side-tracked into

producing massive intermediate documents which no-one

will read. Again, think about the purpose of the deliverable, and concentrate on the

most efficient way of meeting that purpose.

Most, but not all, deliverables will need to be updated when other parts of the system

change. Understanding the audience and purpose of the deliverable will help you

decide what needs to be updated. The easier the update, the more likely it is to

happen. Aim for a clear, simple, structured and focussed deliverable which can be

updated relatively easily.

A Hacker’s Guide to Project Management


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