An adage says life is always in phases, in Project Management, the lifestyle of every project comes in stages right from the start till completion. Each phase depicts a milestone that must be done to achieve the desired outcome. Hence, every project manager must hold milestone Project Management in high esteem to satisfy the needs and expectations of their clients.
According to statistics by PMI, 37% of projects fail globally due to a lack of project milestones. Milestone Project Management is a tool that enables you as a project manager to break your project into different stages to ensure ease of managing the tasks involved in the project.
Furthermore, milestone Project Management aids you in attaining mastery of your project schedules thereby helping you in deriving a good value for your time. No doubt, the complexity of projects can be different but milestone Project Management helps you and your team in breaking large projects into manageable bits that the team can get on with easily.
Sinnaps, an online Project Management tool can be used as a milestone Project Management tool by Project Managers in getting the best out of every schedule. It supports team planning and will properly schedule the tasks and ensure the judicious utilization of the project resources.
Again, it boosts effective communication and collaboration among the project team members in a manner that ensures that they are on the same page over their project activities.
About Project Milestones
Milestones in project management
In reality, one of the yardsticks that stand you out as a project manager is how you define milestones in Project Management. A milestone is a particular point in time within the lifecycle of a project to measure the progress of a project towards the attainment of the desired goals.
Milestone Project Management helps in keeping a close tab on the major progress that must be attained to achieve success in a project. It serves as a signal device for deducing the project start and end dates and when there is a need for review externally and also serves as a check for the budget of the project.
The project timeline milestone helps the project team in the management of the project schedules by ensuring that they have its control under their belt thereby deriving optimum productivity.
Also, it can be used with other tools like Program Evaluation and Review Technique (PERT) and Critical Path Method (CPM) to allow the Project Management teams to come up with better decisions in their projects and maximize their schedules.
In every project, the key project milestones are the following:
- Start and end dates for the project stages
- Key deliverables
- Approvals of the clients and stakeholders
- Crucial meetings and presentations
- Key project dates
The following are the importance of milestones in Project Management:
- Having milestones in Project Management helps the team in maintaining focus on the short-term goals and achieving these can spur the team members to greater performance and productivity.
- It simplifies the task of tracking the progress made on the project and keeps the entire team updated on the project.
- It helps the project managers in the implementation of effective Project Management skills and enhances their capacity to manage multiple complex projects at the same time.
Project plan milestone
Having a project plan milestone is vital to the success of a project; this is because it aids you in achieving the project scope and objectives a step at a time. It will clearly define your approach and the process you and your team will leverage to manage a project based on your scope.
Project plan milestones will aid in communicating key information to the relevant stakeholders of the project thereby enabling them to buy into the ideas of the project.
Project plan milestones assist in knowing the following:
- The main deliverables of the project.
- How will your team get to those deliverables and deadlines?
- Who is in the project team and the roles they will play in the deliverables?
- When will the team achieve each milestone and how the feedback gotten from the deliverables will be handled?
How to create project plan milestones?
- Have an understanding of the scope and value of the project
- Carefully conduct extensive research on the project
- Ask and probe on tough questions about the project
- Create the project plan outline
- Discuss with your team members
- Develop and schedule your project plan
- Share with your team members and keep planning.
Project milestone chart in project management
The role of the project milestone chart in Project Management cannot be over-emphasized; this is because it offers the project team a visual timeline for the project activities in different stages. It assists in identifying who is assigned to each task and the status of each task.
Project milestone chart in Project Management aids in visualizing the project milestones and deliverables that are paramount to the desired outcome from the project. The task of knowing the milestone list in Project Management such as start and end dates and key deliverables becomes easy with the project milestone chart because everything can be seen from a glance.
Furthermore, it aids project milestone tracking because you can easily know the activities that have commenced, the activities that are on hold, and the ones that are in progress.
As a project manager, how you handle the project milestone schedule says a lot about you, and you must ensure that you review and identify the entire important milestone that will happen in your project to ensure that nothing lags behind schedule.
Software project milestones help in overcoming the bottlenecks that could arise in software development projects. The milestones in software Project Management include the following:
- Requirement gathering
- Validation of the expectations of the requirements
- Pre-development planning
- Quality assurance testing
- User acceptance testing Development
With software project milestones, you will reduce the risk of your project and enhance your ability to deliver the software that will meet the needs of the users.
The use of a tool Sinnaps in creating your software project milestones will enhance your ability to minimize your risk and it will assist in determining the critical path of your project thereby saving a lot of time in the process from each schedule which in turn boost your ability to achieve every milestone in the project on time.