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Starting A Project On The Right Foot

Introduction

Why is it sometimes so complex to start with an orderly work process, even if we know the theory well, and have the necessary documentation?

Why is it not possible to organize ourselves before starting the project without stumbling blocks? 

There are many different situations that can be faced before starting a project. Sometimes it depends on the customer’s needs, or when customers are on a small budget, or simply time urgency.

These situations may tempt us to start with no previous organization, but there are many instances that can be reviewed in the procedure of starting a project to properly initiate its implementation.

Planning Ahead

Before starting a project, it is essential to establish the modus operandi, the parameters, and the aspects necessary to start working smoothly. 

A kick-off meeting is a good start, where some of these fundamental aspects will have to be taken into consideration during the project; such as the methodology to be followed, the roles of each member, technical aspects, etc., so everyone involved in the project is aware of how things should be done.

Before kicking off, what if we ask as many questions as possible to dive right into the project?. The answers to those questions will let us start on the right foot. Some of the most relevant questions to consider before the kick-off meeting are related to the following aspects:

  • Work Methodology
  • Communication
  • Team
  • Assets
  • Quality


Work Methodology

The right thing to do is to establish a methodology between the parties involved, which allows projects to be carried out: 

  • What tools are going to be used to monitor the tasks to be developed?
  • How is the progress going to be measured? 
  • Which environments are going to be used?
  • What technology will be implemented?


Communication

In any project, it is extremely important to determine the communication channels and e how often we should communicate. 

If we do not start with the correct communication channels, the development process will not be smooth.  

Therefore, it is extremely important to define how frequent the team members should meet:

  • On a daily basis, 
  • on a weekly basis, 
  • follow-up meetings, 
  • planning meetings,
  • retrospective meetings.


Team

Before we start, it is fundamental to know the roles of those who will be involved and what tasks each of the participants will perform.

It is essential to have this clearly defined (depending on the scope of the project). Who is the project leader? Who is responsible for the quality of the project? 

Detailed information can be found in the following  article  on our blog: Team Roles and Responsibilities

Assets

Define the deployment environments and resources necessary for the development of the project. Consider these three fundamental environments to achieve quality standards. 

  • Development, 
  • Testing, 
  • Production.

 

Quality

The definition of quality is not always valued. It is often assumed that it is not necessary to follow certain standards that control the quality of our project, and the effort and dedication it deserves are generally underestimated.

It is advisable to define how to measure quality, either with tools or resources. Applying good quality practices from the very beginning of the project and for every stage will make our projects move forward correctly.

Conclusion

We tend to start working right away, thinking that we will find the project needs while we are working on it. Experience tells us that what we must do is planning ahead, avoiding a near-future misuse of budget, problems, and disorganization, which will hold us back. 

If you are working on a project where these good practices have not been considered, I suggest you should take your time to review them. It is better late than never.

So, try hard to define those practices as detailed as possible and start your project on the right foot: learn and gain experience on the go, but knowing that you have started in the right way.