During the establishment of the PMO, organizations typically put together end user training covering the new or updated project management processes together with the enterprise tools that support them.
Some organizations also encourage their end user community to pursue their PMP certification from the Project Management Institute (PMI) to deepen their understanding and increase project management maturity. However, this isn’t something that is accomplished overnight as it takes time for people to achieve PMI certification and not all users are interested in following this path.
Having the processes and understanding of project management is often no guarantee that the schedules produced are the right level of quality. In fact, we often see a very common problem with schedule quality. This quality gap between what is expected and what is needed can has a dramatic and negative effect on achieving the organizations project management goals. In fact, it can take months to fully understand the longer-term impact of poor schedule quality because, in the early days of deployment, end users are given months to fully ramp up.
Common Challenges With Schedule Quality
PMO’s that struggle with end user challenges related to schedule quality, experience issues including:
- Schedules will not support rapid analysis of project status and are not well suited to “what if” analysis of project changes.
- Inconsistent use of the tool and lack of adherence to standards.
- PMO resources spend too much time on schedule improvements and corrections.
- PMO resources are constantly badgering end users for better data.
- Poor data quality, which negatively affects management decision-making.
- Scheduling principles are not well understood by end users.
Improving Schedule Quality
Instilling the basic principles of scheduling is a critical part of end user training and support. Training end users in the processes and tools, even including templates to make things easier, is simply not enough. End users need to understand the dos and don’ts of what makes up a robust schedule. While this seems easy, it is surprising that many training programs for enterprise tools do not cover this subject resulting in poor data quality.
Ten Six offers simple and very pragmatic training in improving schedule quality and the results can be dramatic. End users will understand how to apply the corporate planning standards together with scheduling best practices. The impact of this approach quite often results in “Eureka’s”, “ahhhhhs” and “Now I understand” from end users. In short, this is one of those low hanging fruits that an enterprise implementation can pick off. Making this happen can dramatically improve the quality of project information and it substantially improves the quality of information available to the PMs, the PMO, and the CXO’s who rely on project schedule information.
Organizations can get a quick boost to their enterprise project management implementations by addressing the knowledge gaps end users have in applying scheduling best practices. Some of the immediate benefits include:
- Management receives much higher quality information to support improved decision-making.
- The scarce PMO resources can be applied to higher priority tasks instead of dealing with schedule quality issues.
- End users see real benefits in using more realistic and accurate schedules.
- Organizational project management maturity increases for very little effort and cost.
Call us today (703) 910-2600 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org and learn how the Ten Six approach to training your team in scheduling best practices can drive more consistent use of your enterprise tools and significantly improve data quality.