Project Quality Assurance
Did you know that according to a new PMI survey, the projects waste $114 for every $1.000 spent, to the global average? If you have a $1M project, it is already a pretty good amount of money.
Improve how your project functions, and you will get a better output: scope, time, cost, and quality. With a better factory, you will be able to produce better products faster, cheaper.
The independent Project Quality Assurance helps: it provides you with analysis, action proposals, and tools to make your project better.
upify IT uses knowledge and experience based on thousands of projects in different sectors and countries.
The Project Wheel Model © of upifyIT extends incorporates all elements of the Project Management approaches, and also extends the model to the environment of the projects.
The Project Wheel Model © includes fourteen components as follows.
The six core elements are Scope, Schedule, Budget, Quality, Risk, and Human Resource.
The Sponsor(s) should provide the necessary support and direction.
Four elements ensure the operations within the project, but also in interaction with the Stakeholders around the project; Communication, Engagement, Integration, and Governance.
The Procurement process and activities aim at ensuring all inputs.
The organization should capture the Benefits, based on the project deliverables.
Finally, the Stakeholders form the layer around the project and interact via various means.
QA and the Project Wheel
The Project Quality Assurance analyses and helps to improve all elements of the Project Wheel. See below some questions that we will use during the assessments. The lists are not comprehensive.
Is the scope clearly defined, not only on a top management “slideware” level?
Are the deliverables well documented?
How well are scope changes managed?
Is there a sufficient Work Break Down Structure?
What is the ratio of changes?
What is the quality of planning?
Is the project schedule plan available?
Are all necessary elements included in the plan?
Is there a critical path analysis?
Is there a regular plan / actual / forecast report?
How well is the management of deviations organized?
How well is the schedule managed?
What is the ratio of deviations?
Does the project have a clearly defined budget?
Is the budget management process and controls clearly defined?
Are the budget elements assigned to the main WBS components?
Is there a regular plan/actual/forecast report?
How well is the management of deviations organized?
What is the ratio of deviations?
What is the quality of budgeting?
Does the project have deliverable quality targets?
Is there a cost-benefit calculation for the quality targets?
How effectively and efficiently is the quality controlled?
Are the quality management process, methods, and controls defined?
Is there an independent project quality assurance?
Does the project measure continuously the quality?
Are there preventive and corrective actions to assure the required quality level?
How sufficient is the risk management process and controls (including risk log and mitigation action management)?
What is the quality of the quantitative and qualitative risk assessment?
Does the Organization support to raise the risks openly?
What is the coverage of risk mitigation actions?
To what extent are the owners of the mitigations involved and committed?
Does the project sufficiently enhance the plan with the risk mitigation actions?
To what extent is the risk appetite of the project aligned with the risk appetite of the Organization?
What is the size of the resource gaps, if any?
Are the project members assigned to tasks and deliverables?
To what extent is the professional knowledge and experience of the participants sufficient?
Do project members possess the necessary social and other soft skills?
How well are the people engaged?
Will the Organization retain the necessary knowledge and personnel after the project phase?
Is there a sufficient time tracking system and process to measure human resource utilization and efficiency?
Are the sponsors assigned to the project?
What is the level of sponsor involvement?
How sufficiently is the sponsor’s role described?
Do the sponsors give all the necessary support to the project?
How well do the sponsors motivate the project team?
Are the sponsors strong enough in the Organization to provide the support?
Do the sponsors effectively resolve conflicts and find common ground?
How specific is the communication plan?
Are the communication activities sufficient?
Does the communication plan effectively combine different communication methods?
Are the communication messages clear, honest, demanding, and engaging?
Is there a bi-directional communication flow?
How well does the project management understand, if they reached the communication goals?
Are the upcoming communication technologies well utilized?
What is the engagement level of the project members?
How well is the Organization engaged to support the project and utilize the delivered scope?
Is there a gap between management and operational level engagement?
Do the project members understand how they deliver tangible value?
How open and problem-solver is the cooperation?
Is the project scope motivating for the people?
How well do the project members like to be part of the team?
What is the quality of the Project Charter and the Project Plan?
How well are the project processes defined and understood by the participants?
Does the change management process function well?
Is the project plan continuously updated to reflect the changes?
How well are the project activities directed and managed?
Does the project management continuously monitor the progress and takes the necessary preventive and corrective actions?
How well are the processes and controls of the project and the containing Organization harmonized?
How well is the project organization defined?
Does everyone understand how the activities are directed and monitored?
Are the decision-making processes transparent?
Do all stakeholders and project members understand the project governance to the necessary extent?
Are there inconsistencies, overlaps, or missing functions in the governance?
How well does the project governance fit the governance of the Organization and the portfolio management structure, processes, and controls?
To what extent facilitates the governance the cooperation, information sharing, and effectiveness?
Are the project benefits clearly defined and quantified?
Is there a quantified Cost-Benefit Analysis (a.k.a. Business Case), approved by the Steering Committee?
Is the benefit measurement described?
Are the scope elements assigned to the benefits?
Do the benefits have benefit owners?
Have the benefit owners committed, that they reach the benefit, assuming the project delivers its products?
Does the Organization regularly evaluate the project benefits after the project closure?
How well does the cooperation with the Organizational level procurement function?
Is there a procurement plan?
Are the procurement activities part of the project plan with all necessary phases, like tendering, proof of concept, negotiation, and others?
Does the project management regularly review the status with the key vendors?
How well does the approach of the contract (e.g., fixed price, time & material) fit the project methodology (e.g., waterfall, agile)?
Do the vendor deliverables match the WBS elements and project deliverables?
How well are the vendor delivery acceptances assigned to the project members?
Are all stakeholders identified?
Does the project have sufficient stakeholder analysis?
Does the project involve the stakeholders whenever needed?
How open and supportive is the cooperation with the stakeholders?
Are the mutual project-stakeholder expectations, inputs, and benefits described?
Are the stakeholders proactive to make the project successful?
Do the stakeholders allocate sufficient time and attention to the project?
VALUE FOR YOU
The initial project quality assurance review covers all 14 elements of the Project Wheel. However, based on your request, we customize it to your needs.
For each element, we provide you with an evaluation, risks & issues assessment, and recommended actions.
The report includes a management presentation and a detailed analysis.
QA update for SC
You get continuous project quality assurance reviews and support during the project.
We follow-up on the progress, and prepare the project QA report for the Steering Committee meetings or other executive-level discussions.
This review is usually a content-rich one-pager presentation, explained during the SC sessions.
The project operation includes several processes, like Change Management, Risk Management, Testing, and others. Some of them are well-documented; others are ad hoc.
As part of the project quality assurance, we review the critical processes after the initial audit or based on other inputs that highlight the problem areas.
The content of the Process review report is the as-is situation, deviations from the best practices, and an action plan to improve.
You may have issues in a particular area, like Stakeholder management, Sponsor support, or Engagement.
In these cases, we go in great detail to understand the topic as much as possible. This type of project quality assurance exercise requires comprehensive analysis, since it is likely, that there were already previous attempts to fix, and those failed.
The Deep dive report includes a summary of the symptoms, the root cause analysis, and an action plan to solve the issues.
Our cooperation is effective and efficient
We combine remote collaboration and on-site presence.
The terms are flexible to accommodate your needs.