“Engage with the individuals who develop and maintain these systems.
If the project manager attempts to guess rather than becoming more
familiar with the technology stack as a whole, it will invariably cause
problems downstream and increase risk tremendously.”
—Tom Tsongas, PMP, Symantec, Orlando, Florida, USA
“It keeps the process very clear and simple. We keep an audit trail, so all that
is maintained. We can quickly roll back any errors.”
Preparing for Change
Outlining interdependencies also allows project managers to segment integration projects into standalone phases. Staggering the deployment with a phased
approach gives end users a chance to acclimate to system changes while reducing the risk of service outages. And incorporating the program evaluation and
review technique (PERT) also allows project managers to leverage di;erent
processes for di;erent project segments, Mr. Tsongas says.
“Some teams liked to use an agile approach with sprints and iterations,
while others used a more traditional waterfall approach,” he says. “But it didn’t
matter since the PERT and phased approach took that into account in the
Taking a ;exible, phased approach can also help with project sta;ng. Because
new, unexpected roadblocks can appear at each step of the process, reassessing
the team makeup at relevant milestones can help project managers ensure they
have the people they need, says Mr. Jovanovic.
“Integration projects are agile in nature. ;e best way to plan is to have
an idea of the next cycle and, in close collaboration with the business,
derive the need for resources for next cycle,” he says.
To ensure the project will ultimately deliver the desired results, Mr.
Jasti also recommends rigorous performance and scalability testing. In
addition to running simulations based on current organizational needs,
he suggests testing the system’s ability to accommodate rapid growth. ;is
will help project managers be con;dent they are implementing a solution that
will provide value for years to come.
“If you’re looking to ramp up over the next ;ve years, you should test how the
system will behave,” he says. “If you’re in a design stage and want to see how a
proposed cloud system will be a;ected by 15,000 users, you should test that. It’s
essential to test how these solutions will scale over time.” PM
are agile in nature. The best
way to plan is to have an idea
of the next cycle and, in close
collaboration with the business,
derive the need for resources
for next cycle.”
—Radovan Jovanovic, PMP