Dan Swanson’s Security Resources: #15

Project management helps to pull it all together.

If your project management experience or expertise needs strengthening this week’s resources are just what the doctor ordered. Neal’s efforts are world class, and his project management consulting advice is sought after by numerous organizations. Learning from past experiences is always recommended and the “early waning signs of IT project failure” is a classic that should be read before taking on any significant IT initiative.

Finally, last week’s column highlighted the significant benefit of strong change management. This week’s resource “feature” is ITPI – an organization dedicated to IT process improvement.

Good luck and have another great week.

Dan Swanson

1. The #1 Reason Why Project Managers Fail: TOO SOFT!
Various examples of project manager actions (or inactions) that are indicative of too-soft behavior are presented. http://www.nealwhittengroup.com/power/sn_ts.htm

2. PMI’s Library for the Project Management Profession
Located within PMI’s Global Operations Center (Newtown Square, Pennsylvania, USA), the Knowledge & Wisdom Center (K&WC) is PMI’s hub for literature and information sources in the field of project management. The K&WC is committed to helping advance project management practice and scholarship by cataloging PMI-published literature, managing PMI’s ever-expanding electronic literature collection, administering the K&WC’s Knowledgebase, and providing information retrieval assistance.

3. Early Warning Signs of IT Project Failure: The Dominant Dozen.
The postmortem examination of failed IT projects reveals that long before the failure there were significant symptoms or “early warning signs.” This article describes the top 12 people-related and project-related IT project risks, based on “early warning sign” data collected from a panel of 19 experts and a survey of 55 IT project managers.

4. The IT Process Improvement Institute
The IT Process Institute (ITPI) is an independent research organization that exists to support the professional communities of IT audit, security, and operations professionals. They are dedicated to working with IT leaders to advance the science of IT management. The IT Process Institute has created a unique three-part methodology designed to create and share results-oriented prescriptive guidance with our members including: 1) Research – study top performers and identify the causal link between behavior and results; 2) Benchmarking – create tools that compare individual organizations to top performers; and 3) Prescriptive Guidance – share content written to help IT organizations become top performers. Their latest benchmarking study results are also truly “insightful” – go to the second link for free access to the “Executive Overview”.
http://www.itpi.org/home/default.php and http://www.itpi.org/home/wp_reg.php

5. Auditing IT Initiatives – Because an IT Project Failure is NOT An Option.
Key questions to consider:
* Does the proposed IT solution work & will it meet the needs of the organization?
* Does the security aspect of the IT solution work?
* Will the privacy of the organization’s information be maintained?
* Will the staff know how to perform “productively” and accurately?
* Have we done everything necessary to be prepared?
* Are we ready to implement and how do you know it’ll work?

6. The Visible Ops Handbook
Visible Ops: Starting ITIL in four practical and auditable steps – is getting rave reviews. If you need practical guidance on how to jumpstart ITIL or IT control projects – this book is for you. Get control of your infrastructure; increase security, auditability, and service levels; decrease costs.

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