Intelligent IT Project Planning

July 05, 2012 by Alex Collins

IT Project PlanningIn order to remain competitive, your business needs to adopt new information technologies that will give it access to data that will help it take advantage of newly identified opportunities while gaining the flexibility to avoid potential problems. The best way to adopt new information technologies is through the implementation of an IT project.

When your business is faced with an identified need for an IT project, there is a fair chance that you have misgivings about investing the time and effort into a project that may or may not work out the way it should. All Covered believes that when IT projects are planned intelligently, your business can affordably adopt new technology to gain and maintain a competitive edge.

The mindset

All Covered, as IT outsourcing provider to small- and medium-sized businesses, has spoken with many organizations and learned that a commonly held belief is that information technology (IT) projects are too costly and inefficient to be useful. Many organizations feel that based on history, any IT project started would take longer than anticipated to implement, would not work out as planned, and would have a good probability of being abandoned completely.

The reality

With proper project planning, IT projects can be completed in a timely, cost-controlled manner. If your business can effectively plan for, budget, and implement technology projects to support core business functions, your business can leverage its technology investments to gain a competitive advantage.

The plan

A well-crafted project plan should identify the goal of the IT project. It should also identify the business problem that it will solve. An intelligent IT project plan should also contain the following three critical elements:

  • Project scope- The scope identifies what the project will accomplish; this is commonly referred to as the “deliverables” of a project. The scope should address the size and goals of the project and also address any unique requirements that are necessary for the project to be implemented.
  • Project timeline- The timeline identifies all of the tasks that make up the entire project. Each task should have a deliverable date associated with it. Depending on the nature of the individual tasks, deliverable dates may overlap.
  • Project budget- The budget is a cost breakdown of all hardware, software, staff hours, and other resources that will be needed to complete the project.

With an intelligently crafted IT project plan, your IT staff can set expectations as to what the project can and cannot do, how it can and cannot be modified, and what the expected cost of the entire project will be. By establishing these expectations before the project is started, project scope creep—the additions and changes that are made to the project scope once the project is underway—can be avoided. Avoiding project scope creep will help ensure that timelines are met and that the project does not exceed the budget.

Learn more

To learn about IT projects that can help your business gain a competitive edge or to set up an appointment to discuss the details about implementing a particular IT project in your business’s IT environment, please contact the intelligent project planning experts at All Covered.