Documents are not only used by the likes of museum and bureaucratic stuff. They are an intricate part of any company’s day-to-day, and for overriding what is required to achieve good project control. After all, there is no control without information. And, there is no information without any records.
This article lists eight indispensable documents that can lead to a successful project. It’s essential that they are all written plainly and clearly, to ensure that they are not misinterpreted. Also, please note that the list of documents may be changed according to your client’s requests, or the specifics of the project.
The elements that are mentioned in each document, must dictate and thorougly explain the topics, complexity and demensions of each case. This is a general list, but it will help a lot with the path control.
1. Opening statement of the project
The first document which is required for transparent project management is one which formally recognizes the creation of the project. Moreover, it can either be a formal agreement or a commercial contract. The opening statement describes aspects concerning the contracting party and the contractor, such as:
- Project name;
- Summary description of overall goals and requirements fulfilled;
- Feasibility study;
- Products of the project (files, lectures, training, manuals, support, post-launch follow-up);
- Intermediate products (delivered at the end of each phase, with reports, updated timetables, results of tests and researches, budgets from third parties, presentations);
- Sponsor, the manager in charge and the main employees (hired, outsourced, assigned from a department to another, employees with either exclusive or occasional dedication);
- Phases established by the delivery of products;
- Terms (preliminary schedule or timeline, with a description of major processes);
- Resources required (preliminary budget, with values ranked by phases);
- Restrictions on the use of information;
- Necessary procedures in case of changing the scope;
- Procedures that are necessary for the approval of products in each phase;
- Additional services.
The list may seem long, but it is because it is a general model that can be used for any project. You can change or remove topics. However, be aware that the more aspects that are completed in this document, there is less chance of a misunderstanding occurring during the project.
2. The project’s management plan
It will be the project’s reference index in which all documents – both strategic planning and project execution – shall be stored. There is the right formula which is required for the creation of this plan. But, it is ideal if you give it your personal touch.
3. Scope management plan
It records the project’s goals and scopes to make it easier to deal with changes that come up along the way. Take note: The scope is a type of briefing; a script of activities previously agreed and required to fulfill the project’s goals. It must be easy to understand the document to ensure all the stakeholders are aligned.
4. Timetable management plan
It’s a compilation of the project’s phases, month by month, with the prominent tasks, the status of each one (finished, in progress, continuous or to be done), as well as the beginning and termination contract date. It’s the document that stakeholders will be most interested in seeing.
5. The team’s management plan
This plan should provide a quick visualization of who is doing what in the project. It makes the project’s efficient execution easier, and it is essential to make the team’s communication as transparent as possible. After all, remember that there is no project management without the correct management of the people involved.
6. The work management plan
Its primary function is to maintain control of the activities, work packages, resources, time length, costs, targets, project’s critical path, etc. It’s a crucial document as it is the guideline for the team’s work.
7. Quality assurance plan
It’s used to monitor the quality standard, which complies with the delivery of the project(s). Typically it is inclusive of product approach testing, quality policies, quality checklists, definitions of deviation, quality metrics, levels of product defect severity, acceptance criteria and cost of poor quality.
8. Risks’ management plan
It such an important document, however, it is one of the most underestimated in project control. It’s where the project’s risks and potential solutions are reported, in addition to the recording of opportunities and it ensure that you will do your utmost to deal with them as soon as they arise, this is why this plan is in place.. In this plan, you can establish actions to deal with risks such as Mitigation, Acceptance, Contingency, Transference, and others. With this plan, the events leave the unforeseen field, and the company becomes further prepared in the best way to manage the project.
>> Recommended reading: Everyone aware of their roles: a matrix for assigning task-owners
Automated project management
It may be difficult to continuously keep updating all of this documentation, particularly in the cases where you may have to take note, and then check everything manually or create and combine spreadsheets. Instead, automate the whole project control of your company with Runrun.it. You will be able to store and split these documents, as well as monitoring the performance of each professional. Any change in priority is easily shared, and you can follow up the project evolution. Try it for free: http://runrun.it