9 Consider the practical implications of high-level decisions

How often have you sat there trying to implement a procedure invented by someone else who clearly had no idea of how you actually worked when they designed it? A key element of project management is meeting the specification as efficiently as possible. As we design increasingly complex systems, however, it is all too easy to generalize about user needs even if only to simplify the specification documentation. This is all very well at the high level but doesn't help the poor individual in an unusual but still important situation.

I've just moved into a house with a name and a number. Most companies have software that recognizes one or the other when provided with the postcode, and the postman will deliver with either. Unfortunately, my bank's address software provides the name but their account database expects a number!

Meeting the specification as provided is good project management according to the letter of the law. Raising change proposals that better meet real-world user requirements as your experience on a project grows, however, will mark you out as an individual who adds value. Don't ever find yourself saying 'I don't care whether it works or not it meets the spec exactly'. You might be right but your future employment prospects will diminish.

Tip

As your knowledge of a project develops, think through what you're doing from an end user's perspective.


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Definitive Guide to Project Management. The Fast Track to Getting the Job Done on Time and on Budget
The Definitive Guide to Project Management: The fast track to getting the job done on time and on budget (2nd Edition)
ISBN: 0273710974
EAN: 2147483647
Year: 2007
Pages: 217
Authors: Sebastian Nokes
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