The world of project management and its practices is huge. With a lot of methodologies available, which is right for your project? Take a short look at the approaches readily available. Do they compare at all?
Kinds of Methodologies
From Agile methodology to Waterfall methodology and everything between, the world of project management and its methods are there for the taking. Project management experts everywhere will say one is better than the other relying on types and sizes of projects. Is that actually real or can you make use of any methodology for any project?
For this project management methodology comparison, we will cover the following:.
- Agile Methodology.
- Waterfall Methodology.
- Agile Versus Waterfall.
- Change Management.
- Risk Management.
- Quality Management.
- Six Sigma/Lean Six Sigma.
Definitely a few of the approaches provided here are certainly comparable, Agile/Waterfall and 6 Sigma/Lean Six Sigma. Still, specialists hold workshops, disputes, and conversations of fantastic length on whether the Uk’s PRINCE2® or Agile are the same or vastly different.
For the project manager, nevertheless, is one methodology better than the other or can you get to an effective completion of your project making use of any one of them?
Though Agile was first utilized in IT projects, the bottom line on Agile methodology according to a simplified method I wrote is, “using the best procedure through equipped groups, customer involvement, and the capability to analyze and quickly control changes to the project scope at inception and throughout the lifecycle of the project.”.
Whew, what does that even mean? Basically, using Agile management in a project helps you define the project clearly with stakeholders and team input, sprints or iterations assigned to a small groups, effective project monitoring, immediate change instead of constant review, along with constant communication throughout the project. Essentially, in my article Agile for Dummies: Making Sense of It All, a process at a auto service center that took 12 steps to complete was re-evaluated using Agile, cutting the process down to only 4 steps. Basically, Agile cuts project bottlenecks.
Making use of the Waterfall process in projects suggests when the project scope is defined, you’ll be assigning teams with clearly set goals and timelines. Each team handles different aspects or modules of the project and this method is typically used in software development. When a module is deemed usable, it is passed to the next team stage.
The completion of a Waterfall project literally lands in the client’s lap. Critics of the sequenced based Waterfall method claim it doesn’t allow for change control if something is wrong throughout the project process. If group A passes to team B then to team C and group C discovers a trouble from group A, it’s hard to go back. Still, because of it’s linear method, some prefer the Waterfall method if great client input is achieved early on.
Agile Versus Waterfall
In both the Agile and Waterfall methods, an iteration or module is not passed on until it’s done and experts will tell you in Agile and Waterfall that “done means done.” The true difference between the two is that in Agile projects, evaluation of a module is present before it is passed along. In Waterfall, there is no stopping and the project flow passes along and together with hopes of a good outcome. Many project managers have their druthers about which is best. However, in Waterfall, if end-testing doesn’t go well, you better think about beginning all over once more. Find out more on Agile Vs. Waterfall right here on Bright Hub.
Change Management Methodology
In the article, What is Change Management Methodology? it is explained that this process “helps a company prepare for planned and unplanned changes. This change can be forced upon an organization from both internal or external elements.” In this methodology, good change control processes must be set if the need for change arises in a project.
Essential elements include who can offer change concepts and how change will be dealt with based on both stakeholder, group, and manager input. Using change management allows for portions of a project to stop if a problem is identified, the change is handled through the change control process and the project continues. Some experts boast that change management offers effective outcomes every time. However, with change management comes resistance to change. The resistance of a work environment can injure a project if change is not explained, concurred to or understood.
Risk Management Methodology
In Using Risk Management Plans to Prevent Project Failure, the risk management methodology is described as “identifying risks, measuring their potential for harm, and creating plans to deal with the risks.” Risks are identified as being operational, financial, strategic or perimeter and then prioritized. Risk treatment plans are utilized to help prioritization of risks. Managers use the risk register to analyze how a risk will affect the project or the process. Once risks are identified, who will handle risks and risk controls are put in place. Risk management also consists of the realization that some risks are acceptable and ought to not discourage the project. Finally, at project end, a risk analysis is performed to see how well the project flowed.
Quality Management Methodology
According to A Summary of PMBOK Practices: Quality Management, this methodology has two goals, “ensuring a quality end-product and ensuring that all of the process involved during the project lifecycle are carried out efficiently.” The Project Management Body of Knowledge or PMBOK offers techniques on almost all the methodologies discussed here consisting of quality management. PMBOK recommends using quality planning, assurance, and control to complete a project successfully. A manager may think of an efficiently run assembly line before implementing quality management practices. Basically, quality run jobs produce quality outcomes, implying not only an effective one however one with the end-product as designed. Most experts believe the practices of quality management and overall quality management (TQM) go hand in hand.
According to the official PRINCE2 website, this management methodology developed in the UK consists of 6 variables, “costs, timescales, quality, scope, risk, and benefits.” The article PRINCE2 Project Management Methodology goes a step further in identifying the method; “PRINCE2 is an acronym for PRojects IN Ccontrolled Environments.” It could be argued that this method combines all practices offered through PMBOK including a consistent approach, focus on business validation, control with evaluation, stakeholder participation from beginning to end, and continuous enhancement.
PRINCE2 functions are really particular in design consisting of the project management, users, customers, and suppliers. With PRINCE2, however, teams report to the project manager who in turn, before risks, problems, or modifications occur is needed to report to a compilation of users, customers, and suppliers for effective decision-making outcomes.
Six Sigma / Lean Six Sigma Methodologies
Perhaps Agile management developed through Six Sigma and Lean Six Sigma and those who believe so adamantly in the Agile method will tell you they are never going back. In the short article Secret Concepts of Six Sigma, the procedure is defined as a “statistical principle that measures a process in terms of defects. Attaining Six Sigma suggests your processes are delivering only 3.4 problems per million opportunities or DMPO.” 6 Sigma started with two stages, the DMAIC stage and the DMADV stage. The DMAIC phase or defining, measuring, analyzing, improving, and controlling are first used to keep jobs within specification guidelines. Next comes the DMADV phase or defining, measuring, analyzing, designing, and verifying. In this stage project aspects have completed the DMAIC stage and are perfected.
With Lean Six Sigma, the process is much shorter by incorporating the two phases to realize results quicker. While quick does not indicate getting to the project due date quicker, it does mean by using Lean 6 Sigma, your processes within your phases are structured for quality.
So Which Is Better?
This was the inevitable purpose of this article was it not? To compare methodologies? Some methodologies were very first implemented for IT functions where others were considered best to provide quality results, flaws perfection, and recognizing and prioritizing risks and change. The United Kingdom’s PRINCE2® may say it combines all of these into one perfect project management methodology.
The simple answer is that no methodology can fit all purposes, but is that really real? First what does a project mean?
According to my Random Residence Webster’s College Dictionary, a project is, “something that is planned or designed or an important undertaking, especially one involving substantial expenditure, employees, and equipment.” Project Management Basics defines a project as something that “will cause change in some fashion,” or something, “that has a defined starting point (A) and reaches a desired goal (B).”.
If we take those definitions of a project, couldn’t a flower garden be created by using Agile management? Or risk or quality management? Sure it could be. When comparing project management methodologies, choosing one may boil down to your groups and what sort of mindset they have or what training they’ve incurred. A flower garden could even be established with a 6 Sigma or Lean Six Sigma process. With the basics required for a garden, nevertheless, a Waterfall technique may not be your best bet, particularly in the case of the end-product. Waterfall could be used for the flower garden if change management was included in the procedure, however.
In the end, it is still difficult for a project manager to choose the right methodology. A forethought may be which methodology are you most familiar with and have had success with? There will always be debaters on which methodology is more effective and which has the best track technique. Possibly, when you look at project management methodology comparisons, it takes a blend of all them to get from point A to point B.