Project Management Solutions – Adaptive or Predictive?
Tuesday, April 8, 2014
Agile is a powerful word, a methodology that has proven to be quite a success that sometimes, when people hear it, they think it’s a magic project management solution or formula that’s going to wipe away all their process and project management woes for good.
While that can be true in a good number of cases, before making the mistake of falling for this flawed mindset, keep in mind that there are basic prerequisites to consider for agile implementation to be a success, and that agile isn’t the only methodology that can work wonders for project management, particularly if the project relies on detailed, activity-based planning.
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Successful project management solution implementation – one size doesn’t fit all
Right at the outset, the project management solution or methodology you adopt should address the specific requirements of the project and the composition of your team. Otherwise, the project management solution may prove to become a liability, instead of an asset.
Adaptive versus predictive, what will the approach be?
The two most popular project management solutions being implemented today are adaptive and predictive. Adaptive is widely known as agile, and predictive is also referred to as the waterfall or traditional methodology.
Adaptive (agile) project management solution
Agile stemmed from the limitations of the waterfall approach. It is a flexible and iterative project management technique that focuses on a team’s ability to adapt to rapidly changing customer requirements. It is especially effective for service-oriented projects where continuous improvement is to be expected. One possible disadvantage, however, is that because of the innovative nature of this approach, the finished deliverable can be very different from what was originally intended.
Predictive (waterfall/traditional) project management solution
One basic requirement of the waterfall or traditional project management methodology is detailed planning before a project starts rolling. Steps and dependencies are explicitly mapped, and the project moves on to the next phase only when the previous one has already been completed. This solution works well for projects with defined tasks and sequences, and when you know exactly what the final deliverable should be.
Adaptive or predictive?
Based on these rough guidelines, you can see that both agile and waterfall have their uses, so that saying agile is better than waterfall – or the other way around, for that matter – is completely inaccurate. It all boils down to understanding which approach better jives with the needs of your project and the team you’re working with.
Comindware Project – priority-based planning and predictive Gantt chart
Whichever you choose from the two aforementioned solutions, project management success, team-based as it is, also takes into account the effectiveness of your collaboration tools for business. If you’ve decided your project requires an approach that falls under the waterfall category, Comindware Project’s automated priority-based planning functionality can help with the planning phase by creating project schedules based on your designated task priorities and resource assignments.
The predictive Gantt chart, on the other hand, automatically reschedules work that isn’t yet done to keep the project up-to-date and project managers aware if the project is moving along as planned, ahead of schedule, or falling far behind.