No matter the size of the project. No matter the project domain. No matter the engineering processes used to produce the outcomes from the project. There are Five Immutable Principles of project success. These principles are Immutable because they are universally applicable. Without some assessment of what Done looks like before the project starts, you won't be able to recognize Done when it arrives. Without these measures, Done will usually mean
Without some description of what Done looks like before the project starts, you won't be able to recognize Done when it arrives. Without these measures, Done will usually mean we ran out of time and money.
Plans are strategies for success. For the project to be successful, we need a Plan. Strategies are hypotheses. For a hypothesis to correctly represent the outcome it needs tests. The test of the hypothesis for projects are the Measures of Effectiveness, Measures of Performance, Key Performance Parameters, and techTechnicalformance Measures used to assess progress to plan for the project.
We need resources - time, money, facilities, talent, support, guidance. How much? Well, that's a good question. Estimating how much is the starting point. Measuring the effectiveness of these resources is needed to take corrective actions to assure we have enough to finish the project on time. Yes, deadlines are critical to project success. Deadline for getting the tomatoes in. Too late, there won't be time for fruit to set. Show up late to the launch site for our Mars mission and we have to wait till the next time Mars comes around - at our own cost. Show up over budget for the ERP, the ROI we told the Board of Director is now wrong.
Risk Management is How Adults Manage Projects - Tim Lister. No risk management plan with mitigations, the risks are still there, and we're not managing other people's money like adults. Since all risks come from uncertainty, we have to estimate those uncertainties, their impacts, their residual risks after mitigation. Estimating is part of risk management. Risk management is managing as an adult. No Estimating? No Adult Management.
Physical Percent Complete is the only measure of progress to plan. This is true for planting tomatoes, writing software with Scrum, flying to Mars.
So when you hear - well that process you're talking about is applicable in your domain but not mine. And that process is based on one of more the Five Immutable Principles, ask if that person suggesting that unsubstainanted claim has any understanding that Principles are needed before any Processes and Practices can be effective. No? Low Probability of Project Success ahead.