Gathering and Managing Your Project Requirements

Gathering and Managing Your Project Requirements
Page content

Information Requirements

Information requirements are built into each stage of the project cycle. Information requirements can be met without calling them out in the scope statement but are just as necessary for a positive end result. As one component of the project life cycle, the information requirements will need to be carefully planned and adequately met. Reliable information is the foundation for effective project management.

An important function of the project manager is to gather, develop, organize, review and disseminate information. Information should not left to the imagination but rather included in all aspects of the project. This will ensure everyone is kept informed. Often, the information required to manage the project is the most difficult to obtain, but without key information the above steps cannot be conducted efficiently.

1. Accomplishing Key Steps

During the Initiation stage of a project cycle, a broad brush should be used to cover the scope of the project. At this point, define your project and the approach you plan to take, being mindful of the requirements that will be necessary to reach the milestones in your project. If you don’t lay down the groundwork for the milestones in advance, you run the risk of not completing key steps in your project life cycle.

2. Eliminating or Reducing Errors on Specifications

When planning your project, and by identifying and assigning every task of the project, you are able to further sub-divide each task with the criteria necessary for completion. This defines detailed specifications and project requirements needed to accomplish each milestone of the project. Continual review of these requirements will lead to reduced errors, possibly even eliminating them.

3. Going Overbudget

Executing and controlling each requirement of the project lifecycle is central to a successful project. This phase of the project life cycle includes the potential for going overbudget.It is essential to follow the project requirements and not move beyond the scope of the project without thoroughly reviewing the effect on the actual project at this point. All angles of the project come together in this phase and a tangible completion will be in sight.

4. Avoiding Rework

Managing your project requirements shortens your punch list, avoids numerous revisions and keeps you focused on your milestones. All of these factors lead to an efficient project life cycle and successful completion of your project.

5. Staying on Schedule

Targeting specific requirements within a milestone demands the project manager stay on schedule. If you have certain cut-off dates as a requirement to your project, for example, meeting these dates will force you to stay on schedule.

6. Good Quality

Requirements can be earmarking certain specifications within the project scope to assure quality control.Following up on these requirements assures exceptional product output and is highly recommended.

7. Completing the Project

When in the last phase of the project life cycle the primary task is to match the initial requirements specified with the final product. It is also a good opportunity to assemble a report reviewing the completion of the requirements laid out initially and provide insight for future projects.

A great article for more information on scope statements is available by author Eric Stallsworth: A Well Written Scope Statement.