- How do you guys coordinate cross-team deployment plans? Are you still using the old school Excel for these plans?
- How do you rearrange tasks in a way the dependencies between them aren't broken and times are recalculated? Remember that using a MS Project file for deployment plan isn't a possibility as there are some teams that don't have access to a MS-Project instance.
In my last project, during the deployment stage, we had to coordinate 6 'parallel' deployments (there are 2 different business lines + 3 different business regions). Each deployment was formed of around 10 high-level task descriptions, without too much details, in order to be a high level project deployment plan to be used across all teams involved.
As we were dealing with 10+ different teams across the globe, the time differences were a pain to manage. I build up a rough Excel sheet with some semi-automated formulas to automatically calculate the time dependencies based on the task + time taken for each task. Therefore, when changing the time taken for one task, all dependencies where automatically calculated.
Turns out that for the people who's not familiarized with Excel (or don't have time to check for the formulas), it wasn't easy to rearrange tasks. MS-Project was out of question because, as already stated, some teams don't have access to MS-Project instances.
Besides, during deployment, all involved parts were advised to update that sheet and share with all attendants.
From this experience, I believe that would be great if there was a way to:
- Present deployment actions, (maybe in a format similiar to a Gantt chart, but in hours?) where managers could easily rearrange tasks, keeping their dependencies and having their times recalculated
- During deployment phase, all teams could collaboratively check when a task was done.
- During deployment phase, accountables for each task could mark tasks as completed.
- Keep using the ol' buddy Excel
- Use a MS project (not sure if it would work), but having only the PM updating it
- Update somehow the outputs from MS Project into a SharePoint