As a Project Manager, my primary responsibility is keeping projects moving and on track. It makes it easier to view projects as a long checklist to get through—progressing from project to project—always looking forward and focusing on what’s ahead.
In partnership with this method, taking the time to fully evaluate each project after its completion can benefit everyone involved, including the client. We use three measurements to do this: communication, scope, and timeframe.
Did we communicate well with the client? Did the client communicate well with us? Did we communicate well internally? I’ve seen that most project frustrations include some sort of communication breakdown. By evaluating, we can find where the common breakdowns are and brainstorm solutions to improve communication with the client and amongst ourselves.
What was the project’s scope? Did we deliver on scope? Did the scope change at all? At liquidfish, the scope of a project is everything. It tells us what we need to do for the project and how much time we have to do it. If a scope isn’t thorough (usually caused by a breakdown in communication somewhere), we can’t do our jobs to the best of our ability. When a scope is changed mid-project, it’s best to re-evaluate at that point in order to move forward successfully.
When was the project deadline? Was that internal or client-given? Did we meet that? If there was a delay, was it internal or client-caused? Timeframes and timelines are critical to projects. Internally, we build our schedules and backlogs around them, and clients base important decisions off of them. When a timeline is moved or missed, it can have huge implications. Evaluating helps us to determine where projects typically slow down or stall and how we can avoid or prepare for possible delays in the future.
By taking the time to evaluate, we can see trends, both good and bad, and implement changes accordingly. We can then continue to do the things we’re doing well and make adjustments where we need to improve. It shows us what we need to be looking out for in order to avoid the same mistakes within a proactive approach, instead of being complacent and waiting for them to happen again.
One of our newest projects that benefitted from a post-project evaluation was True Digital Security. This site demonstrates how evaluating helps us create a system that is efficient and innovative, while providing the highest quality of work to our clients.
Evaluating projects as they are completed can make a huge difference—like making tune ups to your car. You can do small, preventative maintenance along the way rather than do nothing and wait for the engine to fall out before even realizing there’s a problem.