Establishing Project Management Best Practices – 5 Steps for Success

Whether you’re starting your PMO from the ground up or already have processes in place, defining and unifying project management processes within your organization is a critical step towards effective project portfolio management.

Laying the Ground Work

In order to establish a successful adoption of universal standards, it is important to seek buy-in internally.

Start by understanding how the organization currently manages projects by learning more about the project teams and seeing how they manage projects on a daily basis.

  • How are they currently managing projects?
  • What processes, tools, templates, and standards are currently utilized?
  • How has this influenced project success?
  • Who utilizing project data? In what way?
  • How are project updates shared and communicated?

More likely than not, this will uncover disjointed processes being used throughout the organization without a formal, universal standard. Those who utilize implemented and utilize those processes are key stakeholders and champions in helping to establish organization-wide standards. These individuals have valuable information that can jump start your strategy.

  1. Research within your organization to see how projects are currently being executed and how updates are being communicated internally? Project managers and team members are going to be your biggest resource in understanding current processes and give insights into improvements. Ask, listen, and observe.
  2. Compile all the data. Look for similarities and pronounced differences.
  3. Create an ongoing process to formally kick off the ideation process – Involve leading project managers and encourage them to share and discuss their processes and approaches.
  4. Document these meetings meticulously. Not what works and doesn’t work, note any shared processed/approaches, and create a standard based on what project management processes currently exist.
  5. Involve the rest of the organization – share the current processes, acknowledge the contributors to the process and note how successful their projects have been due to the processes they’ve put in place. Discuss how the standards can be developed and applied across the organization using a compilation of the processes that have already been successfully implemented and fill gaps with new processes, as needed.

Taking the first steps towards optimizing your organization’s project management can seem daunting, but it doesn’t have to be. Together with our clients, we’ve helped implement best practices and continue to innovate project management processes. Learn more about project management best practices with our free, on-demand webcast here.