Proposal for a project management pilot


Improving our project management techniques will always be an ongoing process. Linaro, coming from the Ubuntu background, has no real formal methods for tracking work done, work in progress, asset utilisation, delivery and predicability. As the organisation grows it is no longer the case that an individual can know what everyone else is working on, whether they are over/under worked, if specific projects can be delivered on time and if there are any blockers/risks, without using specialist procedures and tools that are currently not in use.

This proposal is to select a small one month project and use a more traditional project management methodology to determine if this could be rolled out to the entire organisation at a later date.


The objectives of this pilot are:

  • To use traditional tools for project management and determine if they are applicable to Linaro's type of projects.
  • To create better specifications for a project up-front before the project procedes.
    • Better in this case is a specification that will highlight the benefits, resource costs, estimations on delivery milestones, dependances, impact and risks.
  • To allow closer monitoring of the project when it has been initiated.
  • To use the schedule and regular feedback to determining if the project is on-time, at risk, has blockers, ...
  • To enable the production of regular reports outlining progress, problems, and deliverables in both a technical, engineering focused report and a higher-level management focused one.


This project will require the minimum of over head. It will comprise of:

  • Initial discussion with the engineer(s) involved to frame the specification in a more project management way. Important information to gather at this stage is:
    • Proposal
    • Benefits
    • Costs (infrastructure, time, opportunity-cost of undertaking the project)
    • Intended schedule
    • Needed assets
    • Dependances
    • Risks
    • Impact
    • Work items or tasks to do
  • Regular monitoring of the project from the project manager
  • Regular feedback from the engineer(s) via teleconference or email
  • Regular reporting from the project manager

This pilot should be relatively straight-forward to initiate and execute.


The pilot will be conducted in the following way (all estimations are on the high side and in reality these would be lower most of the time).


Time estimation

Initial consultation with the engineer(s) involved with the project

1hr PM + engineers

Review of engineers project proposal to determine if the required information is present

1hr PM

Feedback-loop to get the proposal right

undetermined but budget for 1hr PM + engineers

Regular monitoring of the project (optional)

PM 1hr per week

Gather regular feedback from the engineer(s) on the status of the project

10mins per week per engineer, 30mins per week PM to update tools

Produce regular reports for both engineers and management

30mins per report per week PM

Post-mortem examination of the project

1hr PM + engineers

Post-mortem of the pilot

1hr PM

Post-mortem Procedure

After the pilot has completed a post-mortem will be carried out. In this an examination of the costs vs benefits of doing this procedure will be looked at and a conclusion drawn on whether or not to extend the pilot to other projects. Other factors to look at are perceived engineers benefit, perceived management benefit, applicability of the chosen methods, applicability of the chosen tools, other methods/tools that could be explored.

Success Criteria

To determine if the pilot was a success the follow will need to be met:

  • The overhead of this procedure was perceived by the engineers to be acceptable for the benefits gained.
  • The overhead of this procedure was perceived by the PM to be acceptable for the benefits gained.
  • The reports produced are useful to both the engineers and management.
  • The PM and management know at all times how the project is progressing in regards to the schedule.
  • Any risks or problems with the project are highlighted at an early stage.
  • The project is delivered on-time and if not the reasons for the delay are highlighted in the tools and reports.
  • The procedures employed are applicable to other Linaro projects.

JamieBennett/ProjectManagementPilot (last modified 2010-11-26 15:04:26)