Why do we need five steps to develop a schedule?

Why do we need five steps to develop a schedule?

Program Management, Project Management

Before learning and adopting best practices for project management, developing a project schedule was a pain. I used to grab the project proposal and other available documents and then spent several hours (days) behind my computer working on the MS Project. No matter how much time I dedicated or how focused I was, the outcome was never detailed or comprehensive enough.

PMD Pro made me understand that there are many steps prior to the scheduled development, such as the Logframe review, WBS development, sequencing activities, estimating resources and duration, and establishing the critical path, to finally develop the project schedule.However, I still struggled to understand why I needed to follow all these steps, one by one, instead of simply applying their techniques at once. After all, when thinking on a task or set of activities, our mind naturally assembles all aspects at the same time: when task will start and end, the required resources, who will be responsible for it, etc.

Here are a few reasons why following these five steps is crucial to develop a more accurate and comprehensive project schedule:

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Partnership management

Partnership management

Governance, Partners, Webinar

Social, environmental, and economic needs are complex and require participation of a variety of stakeholders. It is essential for an organization to form partnerships and alliances with other NGOs and civil society organizations to achieve better results. In addition, strategic alliances with local and national governments, companies, and industries increase the chances of a project success. 

Working through partnerships helps to save resources and joining efforts on initiatives (projects) that are similar or related. More importantly, coordinating projects would avoid overlapping activities and, therefore, overloading a community with too many events, training, meetings, and mobilization.

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How to maximise your Return on Failure (ROF)

How to maximise your Return on Failure (ROF)

Project Management

This article has been originally published at Thinkfully

Last month, Thinkfully joined the Third Sector Project Management Forum (TSPMF) at the British Red Cross offices in London to facilitate a session around how to think brilliantly and use different thinking strategies.  

As with many other industries, the Third Sector is facing challenging times in a rapidly changing environment.  Previous research within the third sector has highlighted the importance of learning lessons from past experiences and projects. Therefore, we set the challenge question: “How to identify, take on board and put into practice lessons learnt to improve future projects and become more efficient and effective?”The purpose of this question was to help unpack ideas around ownership of lessons learnt and to orientate the focus on embedding and enabling change for future projects.

The concept of ‘Return On Investment’ (ROI) is well understood (looking at the positive benefits or pay-offs from investing in a resource) however, this session revealed the importance of a new concept – ‘Return On Failure’ (ROF). 

The discussions identified some really valuable and important lessons for us all. Here we unpack 10 big ideas for us all to maximise our ROF, along with some key questions to ask ourselves along the way.

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Long live the Decision Gates

Long live the Decision Gates

PMD Pro, PMDPro Guide, Program Management, Project Management

During the project launch meeting, suddenly, the Project Manager raises from his chair and shouts: “long live decision gates!” Yes, decision gates must live long and walk through the entire project life. But what are decision gates?

According to the PMD Pro Guide, decision gates consist of a series of points in the project that require a decision to either proceed with the next phase of the project, modify the Scope, Schedule or Budget of the project or end the project outright. Each successive decision gate builds on the work that was developed in the previous stage.

Although more common at the Setup Phase, when a formal approval is required to mobilizing resources and beginning the iterative planning and implementation phases, decision gates are helpful and necessary to connect each phase and stage of the project.

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The End of the Project – Game of Thrones Season Finale

The End of the Project – Game of Thrones Season Finale

Project Management, Uncategorized

I am almost sure that I’ve read an article comparing Project Management with Game of Thrones. But, with the coming of the season finale, I cannot avoid thinking on how the project would end if the project manager were one of the Game of Thrones character…

Tyrion Lannister

Using diplomacy skills, he would advise each team member and to negotiate with local partners and seek for the best possible end of the project. He would jump from supporting the partners to attending donor requirements, also searching how the implementing organization could achieve its own needs. Despite of his good will, shifting masters he would like to please would lead to not attending anyone’s expectations. A (continuous) project redesign would probably be the adopted scenario.

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Itaú Social and PM4NGOs partnership

Itaú Social and PM4NGOs partnership

Uncategorized

Partnership Strengthens Development Project Management in Brazil and the World

The Itaú Social Foundation and PM4NGOs established partnership to promote and share development project and program management methodologies, best practices, tools, and other content. The partnership will increase development opportunities for professionals and organizations supported by both organizations.

The Itaú Social Foundation, its initiatives and partners will have access to PMD Pro[1]and PgMD Pro[2]best practices guides, all PM4NGos methodologies and tools, and to the continuing professional development program PMD Pro+

Likewise, the 19 thousands certified PMD Professionals will have access to Itaú Social Foundation publications and videos, and they will be able to register to training courses offered by the Development Project Economic Evaluation Network.

Beyond the management techniques and tools exchange, the organizations intend to cooperate on translating and developing new methodologies. “We believe that the Itaú Social team knowledge and experience is most valuable for new methodologies that we develop and to improve the ones we already have. We also hope to contribute on strengthening the projects supported by the Foundation˜, says Edson Marinho, PM4NGOs Executive Director.

 

About Itaú Social 

Itaú Social develops, implements, and share social development technologies to contribute to an improvement of Brazilian public education. The Foundation work is based on social development programs, promoting civil society organization, and implementing researches and evaluations.

Collaboratively with a network of partners, service providers, and contributors, Itaú Social efforts aim the integration of Brazilian federal government and municipalities to deliver what is everyone’s right: access to proper and adequate education, with no restriction of time, space, ethnic, origin or gender.

Understanding that public education demands a collective organization, Itaú Social invite all interested individuals and organizations to jointly create and make prosper a Development Education cluster, to make it possible develop citizens able to build the nation everybody wishes for.

www.itausocial.org.br

 

About PM4NGOs

PM4NGOs is an international non-profit organization that seeks for an equitable and sustainable world where social investment achieves the greatest impact.

PM4NGOs promotes excellence in the management of social investment projects and programmes through the creation and development of best practice guidance for development professionals, certification schemes for those working in the sector who will be proud to hold an internationally recognized qualification and a forum for communication and discussion about international development sector best practice.

The PM4NGOs mission is to promote and sustain the professionalism of program and project management in the international development sector.

www.pm4ngos.org

 

[1]Project Management for Development Professionals

[2]Program Management for Development Professionals

Applying Agile Project Management Methodology to Natural Disaster Projects

Applying Agile Project Management Methodology to Natural Disaster Projects

Project Management

by Peter Marlow

This research paper, entitled “Applying Agile Project Management Methodology to Natural Disaster Projects” by Marie Desiree M. Beekharry, University of South Australia, investigates how agile methodology can best be applied to the management of natural disaster projects to ensure more effective outcomes. It’s available for download/access at the UNISA Website.

The increasing volatility of our global environment is proving a major challenge for governments, aid and private organisations in delivering effective and efficient post- disaster relief and recovery project management (PM). When disasters strike, especially when consequences become catastrophic, demands on all resources and capabilities in the affected countries exceed supply. The traditional PM decision-making system is impeded by overly bureaucratic and political issues, and in addition there is a lack of local knowledge and ability to diffuse problems. Therefore, it is essential for the disaster management (DM) community to consider alternative methods to enable more effective PM and assist those affected to transition from post-disaster chaos to smooth recovery.

The aims of the research were:

1. To assess the current PM practices in post-disaster projects;
2. To evaluate which elements of best-practice PM are most essential for an adaptable methodology to manage post-disaster projects;
3. To understand the issues and challenges and seek potential solutions for the management of post-disaster projects;
4. To examine whether national and international organisations face similar issues and challenges and how an adaptable methodology would impact post-disaster projects; and
5. To propose an agile framework which can be applied to post-disaster projects.

Eight Disaster Management projects (earthquake, typhoon and tropical cyclone disasters) were studied and analysed in depth. Project Managers and emergency managers were surveyed. Based on the findings and lessons learned, an agile framework for post-disaster projects has been developed.

Communication and Content Assistant Job Opportunity

Communication and Content Assistant Job Opportunity

Job / Consultant Opportunities

What is PM4NGOs?

We’re dedicatedto advancement in the Project Management skills of individuals and organizations working in the development sector throughout the world. Our aim is to reach not just donor organizations and NGOs, but individuals on the ground who are making the difference, often against the odds and with minimal resources.

We develop best practice guides, methodologies, tools, and techniques to help project managers in the development sector to improve the impact of their projects. Our work is implemented in partnership with the most know NGOs and skilled experts. Our products and resources must always be affordable, accessible, and appropriate.

Access the About Us menu option for more details on what we do, our mission, and our vision.

Consultancy Description

The consultant will be required to assist the Marketing and Communications team in the following tasks:

  • Develop content for online and print platforms for distribution to a wide array of stakeholders.
  • Conduct market research using quantitative and qualitative tools.
  • Coordinate with regional hubs on outward communication and marketing.
  • Collaborate and communicate with partners and team members on strategic program areas related to communication and marketing.
  • Work with team members to monitor and measure key performance indicators.
  • Explore additional channels for expansion and exposure of the organization to appropriate sectors.

Desired Qualifications

Education and/or Experience

  • Bachelor’s degree (B. A.) from four-year college or university.
  • Minimum 1 year working in the communications field.
  • PMD Pro Level 1 certification is desirable (or higher level – PM4NGOs certifications).

Other Skills and Abilities

  • Dynamic professional with a demonstrated ability to achieve the expected results.

  • Strong written, verbal and interpersonal communication skills.

  • Strong time management and organizational skills.

  • Good knowledge in online systems, more specifically project, workgroup, learning, communications, and network platforms.

  • To be competent in English. Proficiency in other languages that PM4NGOs uses is desirable (Arabic, French, Portuguese, Spanish).

  • Ability to work with a variety of stakeholders, remotely and across many geographical regions.

  • Social networking experience is desirable.

  • Experience in developing content for media including: blogs, press releases, email newsletters, success stories, etc.

  • Experience in developing content for training and capacity building is a plus but not required.

Expected dedication and timeline

  • This is a part-time position.
  • The initial expected dedication is from 5h to 10h per week.
  • The initial contract is of 6 months, to be extended after review of performance.

Instructions for applying

Apply by sending a resume, a cover letter, 2 references, and hourly rate in USD to:
info@pm4ngos.org, by September 1, 2018.

PMD Pro+ Program Manager Job Opportunity

PMD Pro+ Program Manager Job Opportunity

Uncategorized

What is the PMD Pro+ Program?

 There is currently little opportunity and incentive for individuals to sustain and develop their skills after certification. To address this PM4NGOs is developing a Continuing Professional Development (CPD) Programme.

The programme will offer an online platform to certified professionals (PMD Pro and PgMD Pro) continuing learning and development. Once the Programme is launched, all PMD Pro certified professionals will be issued a micro credential (open badges), valid for one year. Each learning activity will represent a certain number of points, required to renew the online micro credentials (open badges).

The scheme would be introduced in phases, starting with a closed pilot in English. If this is successful, we would plan to widen access and phase in French, Arabic, Spanish and Portuguese in accordance with our language policy.

Program Objectives

  • The objectives of PMD Pro+ are:
  • To provide and incentivize on-going professional support for our professionals in project and program management;
  • To bring us in closer contact with our professionals and stakeholders, thereby improving our products and keeping them relevant;
  • To be achievable;
  • To be relevant. The best experiences are those that enable CPD is used at work immediately to improve on performance;
  • To be collaborative. Working with other people and receiving feedback;
  • To be recognized. Professional Development should be recognized, valued and supported by PM4NGOs and the employer;
  • To be personal. Professional Development works best if it is led by the individual;
  • To be self-sustaining;
  • To be effective and measurable;
  • Not to be just a box-ticking exercise.

Consultancy Description

The PMD Pro+ Manager will support the successful implementation of the CPD Programme through on-line activities, including responsibility for on-line platform update, monitoring, and management, curating learning materials and opportunities, will coordinate activities with the Executive Director for helping community membersand partners discover our Program.

The main responsibilities are:

  • Identify our stakeholders (training organizations, INGOs etc);
  • Work with our stakeholders;
  • Seek out, curate & regularly communicate CPD opportunities to members via the website and newsletters;
  • Organize webinars (get speakers, set up and publicize meetings etc.);
  • Regularly communicate about the scheme to our stakeholders (Press Releases, Blogs etc.) working with the PM4NGOs marketing person;
  • Regularly gather and evaluate feedback, and report to Management Board;
  • Monitor website and feedback statistics;
  • Checking the registrations (monitoring) against new certified people;
  • Coordinate the auditing process (setting up, annual process);
  • The PMD Pro+ Manager will report to the Executive Director.

Desired Qualifications

Education and/or Experience

  • Bachelor’s degree (B. A.) from four-year college or university, minimum of three years in development and/or humanitarian sector; or equivalent combination of education and experience.
  • PMD Pro Level 1 certified, or higher level – PM4NGOs certifications

Other Skills and Abilities

  • Dynamic professional with a demonstrated ability to achieve the expected results.
  • Strong written, verbal and interpersonal communication skills.
  • Strong time management and organizational skills.
  • Good knowledge in online systems, more specifically project, workgroup, learning, communications, and network platforms.
  • To be competent in English. Proficiency in other languages that PM4NGOs uses is desirable (Arabic, French, Portuguese, Spanish).
  • Social networking experience is desirable.
  • Knowledge of Open Badges development and capability of developing the required programming to issue open badges is desirable.
  • Positive attitude, detail and customer oriented with good multitasking, organizational ability and a high volume of tasks.

Expected dedication and timeline

  • This is a part-time position.
  • The initial expected dedication is from 10h to 13h per week.
  • The initial contract is of 6 months, to be extended after pilot success if agreed by the Board of PM4NGOs.

Instructions for applying

Apply by sending a resume, a cover letter, and hourly rate in USD to:
info@pm4ngos.org, by August 26, 2018.