Higher Ed Web Conference - Web Project Management

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Presentation at Higher Ed Web in Milwaukee, WI in October 2009.

Presentation at Higher Ed Web in Milwaukee, WI in October 2009.

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  • Kanban wall


  • 1. Web Project Management
    Strategies for chaotic web projects in Higher ed.
  • 2.
  • 3.
  • 4. A Project is… “a temporary endeavor undertaken to create a unique product, service, or result”
    – PMBOK Guide (2004)
  • 5. A Web Project is...
    Building a few web pages for a department.
    Developing a simple web application that collects student information.
    Using Twitter/Facebook/Ning for whatever specific reason*
    Extensive Content Management System.
  • 6.
  • 7. A Project is… “ongoing, with many false starts and chronic scope creep. Governed by committee(s), success is not often tangible.”
    – Higher Ed.
  • 8. The Chaos
    Developer comes in sometime after noon.
    Designer that doesn’t answer email.
    Department wants to see the term “pedagogy” on something aimed at parents.
    Never ending change requests.
  • 9. Learn a little from Software Engineering
    Pick a dev strategy: understand clearly what you are doing
    Version control
    Issue tracking
  • 10. Project definition
    First committee meeting needs a “memorandum of agreement”
    Define the goals, objectives, and/or outcomes
    Sign it.
  • 11. Follow a process, deliver a product.
  • 12.
  • 13. Triple Constraint
  • 14. Triple Constraint
    What am I building?
    How long will it take?
    How much will it cost to develop?
  • 15. Dealing with the “what”
    Project sponsor asks for something that needs to be built
    Meet with committee and develop a clear scope along with timeline
    Sketch out application
    Call in resources you need
    Develop application, get feedback, tweak, done.
  • 16. What really happens
    “I would like a web site that looks like (insert newsworthy site of the week)”
    “Next week would be perfect”
    “Oh and can we have video?”
    “And a live chat?”
    “We want social media”
  • 17. Manage Resources
    What are the skills and people available to this project
    How much time do they have?
    Is there a line of communication between you and your resources even when not working together in the same place?
  • 18. Identify risks
    What could cause this project to be delayed or fail?
    What will you do about them?
    How much will it cost (time/money)?
  • 19. Break Project down
  • 20. Two week chunks
  • 21. Critical path
  • 22.
  • 23.
  • 24.
  • 25. # S: (adj) agile, nimble, quick, spry (moving quickly and lightly) "sleek and agile as a gymnast"; "as nimble as a deer"; "nimble fingers"; "quick of foot"; "the old dog was so spry it was halfway up the stairs before we could stop it"
    - http://wordnetweb.princeton.edu/perl/webwn?s=agile
  • 26. Image from http://www.flickr.com/photos/18091975@N00/
  • 27.
  • 28. From http://www.flickr.com/photos/orcmid/3879384912/
  • 29.
  • 30.
  • 31. Agile process
  • 32. Agile process
  • 33. Get involved
    Use Basecamp or excel or a word document
    Break down the project for the sponsor (and you)
    Provide time estimates for each phase
    Follow-up with daily/weekly updates on progress
    Share information.
  • 34. PM software?
    Microsoft Project (larger teams)
    OmniPlan (for the mac users)
  • 35.
  • 36. Learn how to use version control software.
  • 37.
  • 38.
  • 39.
  • 40. Version Control Software?
    Subversion (svn)
    Team Foundation Server
    Google Code (svn)
  • 41. Track the project.
  • 42. Issue tracking
    Document milestones
    Track conversations, changes, rationale
    Generate reports (if you want)
    Control your scope.
  • 43. Bugz
  • 44. Issue tracking software
    Team Foundation Server
  • 45. Use a process that works for you.
  • 46.
  • 47. About me.
    Jesse Rodgers
    Associate Director, VeloCity -- University of Waterloo
    Blog: http://whoyoucallingajesse.com
    Twitter: http://twitter.com/jrodgers
    Email: jrodgers@uwaterloo.ca