The feasibility study conducted by the research and development department of the business has shown that there is urgent need to upgrade the soft wares of the business computers. The study has also shown that this upgrade in the software will increase the business productivity and make working much easier. Therefore the management has given a go ahead for this project management plan to be initiated.
Work Breakdown structure
The work breakdown structure for the software upgrade structure is made of work packages of 12 hours maximum and 10 hours minimum per day. These work packages were developed as a result of contribution of the entire project team members and other stakeholders of the project. The main work packages will be project management, implementation and testing. These packages are further divided into smaller work packages. Under project management the smaller work packages will include commissioning of the project. Next will be communication of the necessary information to the project team members. There will also be a manager to oversee the entire project and lastly documenting and completion of work. Under the implementation work package, the smaller sub units will involve all the activities involved with the upgrading of the software. These activities are tracking, shipping and receiving inventory. The third work package will be testing of the upgraded software to see if it works. The activities to be performed will include setting performance metrics and doing the actual testing. In general the WBS for the software upgrade project will have three levels. That is:
Level I: Software upgrade project
Level II: Project management, Project implementation and project testing
Level III: this is comprised of all the activities that will take place under each work group in level two as discussed above.
In case there is need to make a change in the WBS, a change request must be given to the project manager and together with his/her team members they will evaluate the effect the change will bring to the project. The change will be evaluated in terms of risk associated with the change, resources needed to make the change and its scope. If the project manager and his team determine that the change is reasonable, then they will forward it to sponsor of the project so that he/she can review it. After reviewing, the project sponsor can decide to approve the change or reject it. If the change is approved then it will be implemented by the project manager and the necessary documentation and communication will be made. The changes made will be communicated to all the stakeholders of the project.
This section defines all the activities that will be undertaken from the very beginning of the project to the end. Not to say that other sections of the plan are not useful, but the success of the project greatly depends on this section (Heerkens 2002). If the activities are not well defined from the start of the project, then there is likely to be a number of obstacles along the way. Therefore there is need to precisely and accurately define all the activities. This project will be made up of three major activities which include planning, project execution and project appraisal. Planning is very essential because it is the foundation of the entire project. Planning includes defining the project scope, timeline, preparation of the budget and identifying all the resources needed. Hence the project team members in charge of planning should ensure that they accord this section adequate time so that the end result is a proper and realistic plan. A plan should set targets that the organization will be able to achieve using the resources they have and within a considerable amount of time.
After planning, the next activity will be the execution of the set plans. This activity involves the actual work being done. It will involve upgrading of two computers per day. During execution, control measures should be undertaken to deal with any unforeseen circumstances. Through controls the project manager will ensure that any activity that is not in line with the set plan are corrected immediately to avoid any further defects.
The third main activity will be the project appraisal. After the project is completed and all the computers have been upgraded, then the project team should do follow ups and evaluate the finished project to see if the set targets have been met. During the project appraisal, the project manager should also evaluate and see if the upgraded software is working properly and rendering the results needed by the organization.
Sequenced Activity Chart
This involves defining the project’s scope and timeline.
Sequenced activity chart is a diagram that shows the order in which the activities will be done from stage one to the very last step. The diagram below shows the software upgrade project sequenced activity chart.
Human Resource Plan
Human resource plan is very important as it outlines the plan for the personnel that will be needed in the project. It also states how the resources needed will be acquired and allocated among different functions. The personnel needed for the software upgrade project will consist of a number of experts and support from other personnel in the organization.
The human resource for this project will include the project manager, software expert and the organization management. The project manager is the one in charge of the entire project. Therefore it is the work of the project manager to ensure that the project is a success. The project manager main responsibility is accountability and he/she also act as consultants on matters pertaining to the project. He/she is consulted before resources are availed and before the project is approved. The project manager is also accountable for the implementation of the software upgrade and ensuring that the upgraded software is functioning properly.
The second human resource required in this project is the software expert. The software expert is responsible in ensuring that the task of upgrading the software is completed. He/she must make sure that two computers are upgraded a day. The software expert will also ensure that all the computers are tested to ensure that they are functioning properly. Last, the expert must be consulted before the project is approved. This is because he is involved with the actual upgrading and hence it is only him who knows when the soft wares are fully upgraded and ready to start working.
The management of the organization also play a very important role in this project by providing support to the project team. The organizational management is responsible for ensuring that the necessary resources are availed to the project and at the right time. They are also informed when one stage of the project is complete so that they can avail the resources needed for the next stage. There are therefore informed when the implementation of the software upgrade has been completed so that they can avail the resources needed for the testing of the software. The management are also responsible in ensuring that the project is approved. They are part of the team involved in approving the project.
Communication management plan
Communication management plan serves as guide for communication for the entire project team members. It lays down the communication framework for the software upgrade project. This plan will be updated accordingly in case of any changes in the communication system. The main form of communication will be formal communication. Formal communication is considered effective because the success of the project depends on the communication to the project manager and between the project team members. Communication will be done through emails because the message is received immediately and the probability of the message being distorted is very minimal. Therefore communication through emails will be very effective. Another reason for choosing to use emails is because of the type of communication. Communication in this situation will be mainly about reports and meetings. Since reports contains a lot of information communicating it through phone will not be appropriate because it will consume a lot of time reading a report and therefore it would be easier forwarding the report to the project team members. When communicating a schedule meeting to the team members, the best means of communication would be emails because it will also involve sending attached documents to be reviewed in the meeting.
The number of participants that the message is being communicated to also determines the choice of communication means (Kerzner 2001). In this case the communication about reports and meeting are being delivered to a number of people. These people include the project sponsor, project team members and other stakeholders. Hence it would be easier to send an email to all these participants. Sending an email to a number of individuals takes less time compared to other means of communication. Emails are very effective means of communication especially where the message is the same for all receipts as it is the case in this situation. In general the use of email as method of communication has been chosen in this situation because it is fast, delivers undistorted message, takes less time delivering a message that contains a lot of information and can be used to deliver the same message to a number of individuals.
Informal communication is likely to arise among the team members and therefore this plan requires that such informal communication that concerns the project should be communicated to the project manager using the right channel. Informal communication will help the project manager to evaluate the project personnel attitude towards the project.
Heerkens, G. (2002). Project management. New York: McGraw-Hill.
Kerzner, H. (2001). Project management a systems approach to planning, scheduling, and controlling (7th ed.). New York: John Wiley.