Project planning consists a systematic process which brings to the fall and makes considerations for all activities necessary for successful completion of that particular endeavour.
In this article, we will consider software project management plan in software engineering, as well as see how managers can incorporate and adapt Sinnaps online project management software, which is undoubtedly one of the best project management software for engineering firms, with a view to improving performance and ensuring greater productivity.
And because this article focuses more on planning activities in software engineering, we will consider planning therefore, not as a general management idea, but rather as it pertains to software engineering, even though nothing stops the same to being applied in other general project management activities.
Project Planning in Software Engineering
Project planning in software engineering consists the tasks which carried out prior to the development process. Before embarking on a software project, managers and business owners must strive to keep things in check, by first predetermining all essential tasks to be performed as well as properly allocating such tasks to teams or individuals who are part of the software development team. This is why planning is often considered with such great importance as it is almost impossible to achieve good results without recourse to it, which in this case is effective software development.
So, are you a project manager wondering what your roles should be as it relates to project planning in software engineering? Well, let’s try to make your job a whole lot easier for you:
As a software project manager, the entire responsibility of executing the project is on you. Does this make you scared? But it shouldn’t. This is because, as a manager, you should be more worried about having a thorough understanding of the software development lifecycle, (SLDC) of your project; in other words, have a good knowledge of the steps through which the software would have to pass through in order to be complete. You may never really need to get involved in the creation of the end product, but it falls on you to control and manage the activities of those involved in its creation.
In general, to set you up on your journey of planning and managing projects in software engineering, here are some of the things you need to ensure:
- Closely monitor the development process
- Prepare and execute project plans
- Make necessary and adequate resources available to team members
- Maintain steady communication between teams
- Address issues bothering on scheduling, costs, budget, resources as well as time and quality of work
Software Project Planning in Software Engineering
A good place to begin, considering software project planning in software engineering is to consider the following:
- Project Goals: You can get this by asking the stakeholders in such a project. Stakeholders may include the sponsor or owner of the project, the customers, end users, project managers as well as his team members. As soon as you have identified your stakeholders, you proceed to inquire from them what their needs are. With these, you can come up with a set of easily quantifiable goals.
- Deliverables: Having determined the goals of the project, you can further use those to come up with a list of things which the project will have to deliver in order to satisfy such goals. See how your project plan is coming on fine. Next, you want to add a “how to” which will specify the means by which the items will be delivered, and “date” which shows when such item will be delivered.
- Schedule: After completing step two above, you may then go ahead and create a list of tasks/activities that must be carried out to create each deliverable, and for each identified task, you would want to make provisions for the following:
- Software size estimation – This may be done by calculating the number of function points in the software or by considering Kilo Line of Code
- Effort estimation – This has to do with man-power based on time they will spend on tasks
- Time estimation – This factors-in the total amount of time for each task, culminating in the product of the project
- Cost estimation – To get this right, managers must consider the size of the software, hardware, licenses and tools, software quality, skilled personnel, communication as well as training and support.
This mustn’t scare you, as there are a ton of applications out there with several tools, which will let you complete the processes as listed above without much trouble. Also, you find templates you could easily download and use.
As an illustration, Sinnaps offers software development project timeline examples on its online database, all you need to do is download and tailor your content accordingly. Sinnaps is in general, a good project management software for civil engineering and also finds use in other broader spheres of business management.
After making considerations for all the above, you may go on and make other supporting plans like the human resource plans, communications as well as risk management plans.
Best Engineering Project Management Software
Now that you are ready to start piecing together your own project monitoring plans in software engineering, you would want to take advantage of the several available tools that can make your job a lot easier.
These online collaboration tools, like Gantt charts in software engineering, and the likes can enrich your projects in a whole lot of ways, leading to increased productivity and efficiency. For example, these tools can improve collaboration between teams, allowing you to upload files, send reports to stakeholders, monitor work hours, assign tasks and monitor schedules, view tasks in-progress as well as know which ones are complete. The tricky part is only that of figuring out which is good for your business and adapting same.
Manage your teams’ resources and workload
Project planning activities in software engineering encompasses documenting procedures and specific actions to be taken in a bid to arrive at a certain required result, which in this case is a working software, as well as forestall obstacles that are likely to arise in the course of such activities, that may tend to hinder the development team from achieving set goals and objectives.
These obstacles may include specific changes in the project’s objectives, non-availability or scarcity of resources, etc. Luckily for you, the internet presents an opportunity to lessen the burdens of creating plans and successfully managing your businesses, you only need to find one that works for you. Good luck on your engineering entrepreneurship endeavours.
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