Episode 275: Your Project Statement of Work is Missing a Comma! (Free)


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Episode 275: Your Project Statement of Work is Missing a Comma! (Free)

  1. 1. Episode 275: Your Project Statement of Work is Missing a Comma! (Free) PMI, PMP, CAPM, PgMP, PMI-ACP, PMI-SP, PMI-RMP and PMBOK are trademarks of the Project Management Institute, Inc. PMI has not endorsed and did not participate in the development of this publication. PMI does not sponsor this publication and makes no warranty, guarantee or representation, expressed or implied as to the accuracy or content. Every attempt has been made by OSP International LLC to ensure that the information presented in this publication is accurate and can serve as preparation for the PMP certification exam. However, OSP International LLC accepts no legal responsibility for the content herein. This document should be used only as a reference and not as a replacement for officially published material. Using the information from this document does not guarantee that the reader will pass the PMP certification exam. No such guarantees or warranties are implied or expressed by OSP International LLC.
  2. 2. 2 Prior to signing any project statement of work (SOW) it should be reviewed by your legal team. However, while legal experts understand legalities that will help you out in court, they are not project experts who can determine if a particular SOW will provide you with the product that you anticipate, need, or desire. In our discussion we look at the main reasons behind doing a formal SOW review, at the factors that show whether a formal review makes sense or not, identify some of areas of concern during a review, and learn why a comma can make all the difference in the world.
  3. 3. 3 Todd C. Williams (http://ecaminc.com/) on the other hand is such an expert. He has reviewed dozens of statements of work for his clients. He analyzes the methodology, scope, deliverables and proposed cost, and finds areas that point to weaknesses in the ability to deliver or misalignment in intentions.
  4. 4. 4 The following are the first few pages of the transcript. Hello, Todd and welcome back to The Project Management Podcast™! Thank you very much, Cornelius. It’s a joy being back.
  5. 5. 5 Cornelius Fichtner: Yeah! So this is not the first time this week that you and I speak here over Skype. In fact, you and I, we meet regularly and we talk about how each others' businesses are doing. During one of those discussions, you told me: "Hey! We as a company, we're now doing reviews of SOWs for our clients!" and I'm like: "You're doing what?" that led to a very long discussion and it ended with me inviting you here on the program to talk about what it is you are doing. But let's begin with the problem here. What do you see as the issue with project SOWs, with statements of work?
  6. 6. 6 Todd C. Williams: Well, people think that they are just boring. They think they're part of a contract. They are just part of this standard pack of stuff that we put in an envelope. We put on an email. We send it off and get it done. And they're not. These are really critical parts. They are not part of the contract. They are an addendum to the contract. They are a separate thing that actually says: What is it that I told you and you told me that we're going to do and we agree you can do for some set price? And that is really critical. So it is the primary, the focal document for communication between you and whoever is doing work for you.
  7. 7. 7 Cornelius Fichtner: Right and I think there's one word you took out of my mouth here --- boring. Many people think of this: "This is boring. This is contractual. I'm not interested in this" and that's exactly why it is important that project managers hear this conversation and understand how important an SOW really is, right? Todd C. Williams: Yes because now, I may be a little bit geeky and of course because we talk, you exactly know how geeky I am with my business but I think they're actually fairly exciting. They tell you a story about what's going on and how people are working together and there's a lot of culture embedded in these things. But now, they have to be extracted or inserted depending on what end of it you're looking at.
  8. 8. 8 To listen to this Interview you may download the audio at: Episode 275: http://hwcdn.libsyn.com/p/8/9/9/8992b7c588209025/PM_Podcast_275_2014_06_ 13_todd_williams.mp3?c_id=7279008&expiration=1409844588&hwt=a995495ca93e1d8dd6d3288f4ba0b9a6 Subscribe to The PM Podcast in iTunes: https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/project-management-podcast/id79900698#
  9. 9. This Podcast Interview is brought to you by: http://www.project-management- podcast.com/ 9