Read the case study 5.3 Project Management at Dotcom.com in the text on pages 166–167.
Dotcom.com is a software engineering and systems development consulting firm that needs some organizational improvements in the area of project management processes that will cut cost and potentially increase the profit margin for the company. Answer the following questions:
Discuss how you would begin redesigning dotcom.com’s project management processes to minimize the problems it is experiencing with poor scope management.
Why do you think configuration management and project change control are difficult to perform in the middle of a complex software development project, such as those implemented at dotcom.com? Share any experiences you have with project change requests.
Attack this problem from the perspective that you are a consultant with broad authority to innovate as well as propose conventional wisdom…..For most projects, the scope definition phase requires a full contact, back and forth, question and answer approach to define the clients needs. It cannot be directly achieved by a simple statement from the customer… frequently such a statement will be short of details, and the language they use may be imprecise… the PM and his/her team need to be fully conversant with the customers technical expectation and the corporate environment in which the product will be employed….they really need an intimate understanding of each other to achieve a good scope… A company which is executing projects for others, and building its configuration management skills at the same time is really asking a lot of its employees….I don’t think my experience has ever revealed a staff of lazy people, more frequently the motivation is related to doing the best job on producing products, and prioritizing the “documentation” at a lower level. The key to configuration management success is to educate employees that they will reap the benefits of a stronger system by reducing their future workload….have you experienced the effects of changes in scope ( or job instructions) in the middle of an assignment…?
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