IT Projects Success – Principle #8: It

8.   It’s the Deliverable (that matters), not the Task.

The final deliverable is the Information System ready to be usedeffectively by the Business. If you can jump from ‘Start’ to this finaldeliverable in one “Task”, then power to you. Some people can do this;most cannot. This is again where a team of specialists is mosteffective on an average project.

This means that the project work will be divided into many tasks,sub-tasks, etc. . . . Once assigned a task, it is the goal of aspecialist to produce a deliverable/result/artifact that can be used bythe next specialist to further the progress of the overall project.Unfortunately, this simple idea has been the starting point forliterally hundreds of IS delivery methodologies, many which spend aninordinate amount of content explaining how to do a task, how to amassall the tasks in Phases, and often insisting that its way is mandatoryfor success.

What this can lead to is an over-emphasis on the how of IT projecttasks, to the detriment of actually completing them with all due speed.Here we see the task that is 90% done for weeks, or the infamous‘analysis paralysis’ where a project cannot seem to get pastRequirements.  Ends do not justify any means, but Ends must bedelivered.

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Jim Love, Chief Content Officer, IT World Canada

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