Success in life is about project management. Determine deliverables, make milestones, and always pursue the critical path. – Ryan Lilly
Here are some methods to help project managers stay on schedule so that you can deliver your deliverables on time.
This probably seems like a no-brainer, and rightfully so, yet somehow it’s still one of the top reasons projects begin to fall behind. The reason it is so often neglected is that we already know what needs to be done, so we just do it. Or so we think.
Instead of merely hoping that all deliverables will be taken care of by their respective deadlines, implement a strategy of how they’ll be handled. Spelling out what is included in the deliverables is definitely helpful, but you should also be sure to apply what will not be included in those deliverables as well. Furthermore, detail what will be completed, when it will be completed and who will complete it.
This step will establish a clear baseline for what needs to be done, and when it is expected to be completed, ensuring the project runs as smoothly as possible.
It’s important to stay on track and stick to the project plan. Each delay results in late delivery so never allow, even the smallest delays to go unchecked. Hit deadlines when you need to hit them, and you should be just fine.
That said, it’s important to note that delays are an inevitability so when they do happen it is vital that you acknowledge them as soon as possible and come up with a strategy to mitigate the damages. Pool together all of your resources to analyze the problem and rectify it.
Unfortunately, there is no singular way to mitigate delays, so you’ll have to use all your resources at your disposal to come up with the right solution for you. The important thing is to acknowledge what’s going on, rather than sticking your head in the sand hoping that everything works itself out.
Sure, it’s important to stick to a schedule, but don’t be afraid to make adjustments when they are called for. Often times, in the middle of a project you stumble on a more effective and efficient way to complete a task. Or maybe, you see an opening that you can take advantage of to get yourself ahead of schedule.
What made Peyton Manning such a great quarterback wasn’t just that he was capable of sticking to the game plan. It was because he was able to recognize where he could take advantage of opportunities, and capitalize on them. Be the Peyton Manning of project management; don’t be apprehensive about calling audibles every now and again. Capitalize on unforeseen opportunities.
There’s an age-old adage that I’m sure we’ve all heard by now; “work smarter, not harder” and it’s an adage that has never been more applicable than it is in today’s world. In the age of technology, we’ve got tons of stuff at our disposal to help make life just a little bit easier, and that goes for project management as well.
Utilize hardware and software that is designed to improve company efficiency. Customer relationship management tools (CRM) are a great way to streamline projects and keep everybody in the know. Some software like FieldPulse go a step further and allow you to centralize every aspect of a project in one place. These types of software are a perfect tool for keeping clients, and contractors informed and in the know, and go a long way towards staying on task and track, which means on-time deliveries, and ultimately, happy clients.
Marie Erhart is a Success Manager at FieldPulse, creators of field service software that lets you run your entire contracting business from a single app. She works with contractors to help them grow their business using best practices.
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