Congratulations Project Manager! The sales team was awarded a contract to develop an awesome course module.
Start of the Project
As a project manager, you have been assigned the client and project to shepherd through the entire process of instructional design, development, quality assurance and final delivery. It’s an exciting time as you dive into understanding the contracted statement of work or “scope” as many in the business call it. You’ve reviewed the technical details; the authoring tools needed and try to learn any information about what the client’s vision for the course module. You’ve reviewed the budgeted hours and delivery dates while you are visually the process from start to finish. You’re ready to contact the client and kick-off the project!
After the Kick-off Call
After you complete the kick-off the project with the client and totally understand their vision for the course module, you review everything as you plan a timeline. The timeline is a vital component of your team’s processes. It identifies the dates certain events need to be completed by in order to deliver the course module on time. These “milestones” in the timeline were created to match deliverable dates that was scoped in the statement of work, or the dates agreed to by the client during your kick-off call.
You knew that it was crucial to have your client understand the importance of the milestones to keep the project moving along.
We project managers have all been there in this situation. Everything goes well as we review and understand the scope. The project kick-off call with our client was excellent. The client is professional and easy to work with. They understand the processes needed to create awesome eLearning. Most importantly, they understand how the budgeted hours are applied to the agreed timeline. Everything about the project looks great!
Still on Track?
But now, two months have gone by… What’s the status of our project? Have we delivered the course module? Did we meet the timeline milestones? Not even close. What happened? There are a few common mistakes in project management when dealing with timelines. This mistakes are easy to spot, but if not taken care of can completely derail a project.
Read the next post on Project Management & eLearning Timeline Pitfalls — Part 2.