I had an initial meeting with my project stakeholders and was able to define a strategy based on goals that everyone agrees with. The goals are:

  1. Data access
  2. Data storage
  3. Data validation
  4. Analytical solutions
  5. Real time support

All five goals translate to real, tangible tasks like firewall access, code design, database design, report writing etc...As a coder , I would structure my project plan from a standpoint of

  • Inception
  • Analysis
  • Design
  • Implementation

But I sense it would miss the mark by doing so. I am thinking on using the five goals above as phases of my project plan.

Do you agree? How would you structure this project plan?


I agree on half of what you submited. Planning also includes, budgets, human ressources, deadlines, material ressources, etc Those are specific tasks, but very good ones. You have to ask yourself other questions, depending on the nature of your project. What do you start with? What do you do second, etc. You have to reflect on a brother basis, with a global view. You have to understand what is your role. Are you the project manager? Will you use the Agile or Scrum models or you own? In one word, you have to figure out how you are going to organize yourself with the team and money you have for your clients to be fully satisfied on time.

  • 1) I am the (super new at this) pm. 2) This is not a software project of my end: we are transferring code, reports etc. to another team. I guess my job is going to be more of identify what's required and coordinate accordingly. – Chris Mar 2 '12 at 22:54
  • But my point is that planning is a management task that can apply to many different situations. You have to understand how it works and if you have the abilities to do so. I think you do. – Simon Boulanger Mar 2 '12 at 23:07

What you're talking about is a Work Breakdown Structure.

Your first five are not phases, but rather separate deliverables or work packages. Break them down that way, with the requisite tasks, and then follow the process or progression you would normally follow for each.

  • Thank you. This makes complete sense to me. Accepted and voted up. – Chris Mar 2 '12 at 22:45
  • Actually, my project is about more transitioning away from my team to another software code, reports, data files etc...There would no effort involved on my side but more on theirs. Does a WBS still apply? – Chris Mar 2 '12 at 22:48
  • 2
    Yes. Whether or not you should have a WBS isn't contingent on the type of project. If you have a project goal and deliverables, then you should have a WBS. This helps you break down the overall project into its' component parts (decomposition) for better management. So even though there's 'little effort on your side', you and your stakeholders were able to identify the specific deliverables (your 5 items), so now you can break those down into the relevant tasks to achieve each, and ultimately the end project goal. – Trevor K. Nelson Mar 3 '12 at 0:30

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