Project Management Assignment: Application of Agile Methods for ICT projects
Task: Write a project management assignment presenting a literature review on the application of agile project management methods for the ICT projects.
Project management is one of the most important aspects of any project. The ICT projects comprise of various activities and procedures that may also run in parallel. It is necessary that the effective management of these projects is done. The requirement of a well-defined project management methodology is essential to be able to manage the ICT projects. There have been changes and transformations in the field of project management. The traditional project management methods are no longer efficient as the changing nature of the ICT projects may not be possible to be managed by these methodologies. One of the latest developments is the release of the agile project management methodologies. The literature review is conducted to understand the potential and application of agile project management methods for the ICT projects(Higuchi and Nakano, 2017).
The project management methods that are developed shall be related and applicable to a wide range of projects. Also, the methods and guidelines that are defined shall be closely related to the projects and these shall range from basic to the complex projects(Altunel, 2017). The research studies have been conducted and these show that the traditional approaches that are used in project management can bring down the costs associated with the project. This is due to the development of the straightforward plans to manage the applicable constraints. The ICT projects that is executed in the current times and multi-faceted in nature. The scope of the project may be gradually developed and there are time and cost limitations that are also significantly applicable on these projects. The new solutions to project management have become necessary so that these changing requirements and uncertainties can be effectively managed(Craddock et al., 2017).
The traditional project management methods and guidelines were defined without considering such scalable nature of the projects. The modern day project management methods are defined and are strongly connected with the aspects of software application design and development. These methodologies include some of the new ways to deal with the technology and the associated advancements. The modern methodologies that have been developed are defined under the name of the agile processes. The agile methodology for project management is also referred as adaptive and ad-hoc methodology. Adaptability is the key aspect of the projects and is often more significant than the consistency. The traditional project management methods, such as PMBoK or PRINCE 2 methods give higher priority to consistency(Freitas, Araujo and Franca, 2019). However, adaptability is necessary in the projects and is acknowledged with the agile project management methods.
The research study illustrates and explores the various kinds of changes that may occur in the project. Most of the modern methodologies, such as the agile project management methodology welcome the changes and also acknowledge that the development of the entire project strategy and plans before the commencement of the project is difficult. Agile project management methodology is developed to include and acknowledge the project changes along with the coordinated effort from the project team to be able to manage these changes. The team members that are involved in the agile-based projects are dedicated towards practice management(Gemunden, 2015). Also, the communication and coordination maintained is formal and informal. These changes are gradually made in the projects and the organizations and these must identify with the organization culture.
The research study explains the implementation of the agile project management methods to the ICT-based projects. The ICT projects in the current times do not have a pre-defined scope. There are various changes that occur in the ICT projects throughout its lifecycle. The modern day technologies are also dynamic and there are regular modifications that keep on happening in these technological applications. For instance, Artificial Intelligence or Machine Learning technologies are data-driven. The input data is used for training and the data that is fed in these applications continuously changes. As a result, the project management methods that are applied for managing such projects shall also be able to manage the changes effectively. The Internet of Things (IoT) projects also comprise of several components and these components have a wide range of properties and specifications(Layton, 2017). The number of components can increase or decrease and it may bring along the changes in the applications. The agile projects can manage such changes in the project scope as these methodologies promote the adaptability and scalability of the projects.
Another advantage of the agile project management is the creation of the project scope as per the iterations and the assessment and communication of the impacts in the early project stages. It assists in the faster project execution to control the project uncertainties. This is one of the primary reasons that are determined in most of the research studies and these bring down the risk of poor project quality.
The ICT projects are designed in such a manner wherein the requirements can be classified in different categories. The functional aspects of any of the ICT project are as important as the non-functional aspects(Miller, 2016). The maintenance of the project quality can be done only when the project is effectively managed. The system qualities fall in line with the agile traits and characteristics. The frequent involvement of the end-users is done as part of the agile project management techniques. It provides the ability to the project team members to connect with the end-users of the system/product/service and understand their perspectives. The viewpoints of the end-users is gathered and analysed for the continuous integration and improvement. The traditional methodologies of project management also recognize quality management as the significant project requirement. However, there is a lot of rigidness that is involved with these methodologies. The customer interaction and communication may also come later in the lifecycle(Serrador and Pinto, 2015).
There are certain success factors that are identified in the agile project management techniques. The skills and involvement of the project crew is of the utmost importance. The lack of proper and effective skills in the project team members can have drastic implications on the agile projects. This is because the members in the agile team are self-managing in nature. Unlike the other project management methods, such as PMBoK or PRINCE2, the agile project management does not include the Project Manager as the primary resource for the management of the projects. It is the responsibility of all the resources involved in the agile teams to make sure that the project is properly managed and the associated project goals are achieved. The authors have also suggested the combination of the two or more project management methodologies for successful and effective project management(Indelicato, 2016). The ICT projects can be effectively managed if the agile project management is combined with the other project management methods, such as PMBoK or others. The plan-driven amalgamation will provide the ability to properly manage the project risks and changes. Alongside, it will also make sure that the proper control is implemented in the ICT projects. The researchers have also been able to determine the various barriers that are involved in the implementation of the agile processes. The researchers have suggested that the implementation of agile can be effectively done for the smaller teams and ICT projects. However, there can be multiple barriers that may be determined with the implementation of the agile project management in the large-scale and multi-site ICT projects. Some of the complexities arise due to the nature of agile and the conventional processes that are being used in the business firms(Rasnacis and Berzisa, 2015). The management and amalgamation of the two may not be possible to be done effectively. There are unique lifecycles that are involved in the agile projects that may not align properly with the traditional processes. The current processes that are followed in the ICT organizations usually do not align well with the agile practices. There are several benefits that are provided by the autonomous agile teams. However, the execution of these teams largely depends on the skills of the team members and also on the authoritative setting. There are positive reports that are obtained from the autonomous teams; however, some of the teams have shown mixed evaluation. There can be certain chances of failure in the case of the wrong circumstances with lesser support. The hierarchical environment followed in the organization and its management can also have an impact on the agile success in the ICT projects(Ross, 2017). The rigid hierarchy and the lack of coordination and support can lead to the massive failures. There is also lack of trust present among the team members and it also results in the issues within the team and the success of the agile implementations. In such scenarios the change in the requirements or the alterations in the project scope leads to the complexities in the projects and it may not be possible to avoid and manage these complexities.
The traditional project management techniques, such as the Waterfall and PMBoK techniques are criticized for their rigid nature(Nasir et al., 2015). The use of agile methodology falls in line with the fast-paced and adaptive software developed. However, there are major changes in the management approaches that are required to be done. The collaborative approach is essential so that the team decisions can be made accordingly. One of the most significant aspects that are associated with the ICT projects include the development methodologies that are used and applied in the project(Pirro, 2019).
The use of the qualitative analysis and literature review is done to understand the aspects of agile project management and the application of these techniques for the ICT projects. The majority of the research articles and journals that are used make use of the qualitative analysis. There are some of the articles that also use the quantitative and exploratory approaches. The use of the case study-based approach provides the ability to determine the benefits and drawbacks that may be associated with the agile-based ICT project management.
It is required that the comparison of the specific development methodology is done with the agile project management. There are a lot many development methodologies that are defined. These include the waterfall methods, iterative development methodology, spiral methodology, agile scrum methods, extreme programming, and others(Poort, 2020). Similarly, there are design methods that are followed in the ICT projects that may include responsive or other design methodologies. These methodologies and techniques can have an impact on the agile project management and its implementation in the project(Todorovic, Toljaga-Nikolic and Bjelica, 2018).
The analysis of the information covered in the published literature is done to understand the significance of the agile-based project management for the ICT projects. There are positive as well as complex aspects that are associated with the agile-based ICT project management. The agile project management procedure invites the changes and furthermore recognizes that the improvement of the whole project system and plans before the initiation of the project is troublesome. Agile project management procedure is created to incorporate and recognize the project changes alongside the planned exertion from the project team to have the option to deal with these changes. The team members that are associated with the agile-based projects are committed towards training management. Also, the correspondence and coordination kept up is formal and casual. These changes are step by step made in the projects and the associations and these must relate to the association culture(Rasnacis and Berzisa, 2015). The upkeep of the project quality should be possible just when the project is viably overseen. The framework characteristics conform to the agile attributes and qualities. The successive association of the end-users is done as a major aspect of the agile project management strategies. It gives the capacity to the project team members to interface with the end-users of the framework/item/support and comprehend their viewpoints. The perspectives of the end-users is assembled and examined for the continuous integration and improvement. The traditional philosophies of project management also perceive quality management as the critical project necessity. However, there is a ton of rigidness that is engaged with these philosophies. The client collaboration and correspondence may also come later in the lifecycle.
The specialists have recommended that the usage of agile can be adequately accomplished for the littler teams and ICT projects. However, there can be numerous obstructions that might be resolved with the usage of the agile project management in the enormous scope and multi-site ICT projects(Serrador and Pinto, 2015). A portion of the complexities emerge because of the idea of agile and the ordinary cycles that are being utilized in the business firms. The management and combination of the two may not be conceivable to be done successfully. There are special lifecycles that are engaged with the agile projects that may not adjust appropriately with the traditional cycles. The current cycles that are continued in the ICT associations generally don't adjust well to the agile practices. There are a few advantages that are given by the autonomous agile teams. However, the execution of these teams to a great extent depends on the aptitudes of the team members and furthermore on the legitimate setting. There are positive reports that are acquired from the autonomous teams; however, a portion of the teams have demonstrated mixed evaluation. There can be sure chances of failure on account of an inappropriate condition with lesser support. The progressive condition continued in the association and its management can also affect the agile success in the ICT projects. The rigid hierarchy and the absence of coordination and support can prompt the enormous failures(Altunel, 2017). There is also absence of trust present among the team members and it also brings about the issues inside the team and the success of the agile implementations. In such situations the change in the prerequisites or the adjustments in the project scope prompts the complexities in the projects and it may not be conceivable to keep away from and deal with these complexities.
The evaluation of the agile-based project management is done for the website development project with altering project requirements and scope. The changing project requirements will not be possible to be managed by the traditional methodologies, such as Waterfall or PMBoK(Townsend et al., 2018). The agile project management methodologies are found to be 30% more effective in managing the altering project scope and these will minimize the chances of the project risks, such as scope creep and requirements inflation. It is also evaluated that the agile-based project management for such ICT projects will fit the best with the agile methodology for software development. The gaps in the research are found to be true. Agile methodologies are still being explored and there is a cultural shift that is witnessed in the business organizations from the traditional and rigid organization culture to the adaptive agile environment.
Agile project management is a methodology that offers and adaptive and flexible approach towards project management. The implementation of the agile-based ICT project management provides numerous benefits, such as the adaptiveness and flexibility to the projects along with the continuous integration, higher customer satisfaction & communication, coordinated team, and faster execution. There can also be several barriers that can arise with the multifaceted projects and the involvement of the unskilled resources in the team. There are impacts of the design and development methodologies that can also be seen on the implementation of agile-based project management.
Altunel, H. (2017). Agile Project Management in Product Life Cycle.International Journal of Information Technology Project Management, 8(2), pp.50–63.
Craddock, A., Roberts, B., Stapleton, J., Godwin, J., Apmg International and Agile Business Consortium (2017).Agile Project Management. Ashford: Agile Business Consortium Limited.
Freitas, M.D., Araujo, F.C.C. and Franca, S.L.B. (2019). COMPARATIVE ANALYSIS OF PROJECT MANAGEMENT METHODOLOGIES PMBOK AND AGILE – A CASE STUDY WITH COMPANIES OF THE BRAZILIAN ENERGETIC SECTOR. RevistaGestãoInovação e Tecnologias, 9(3).
Gemunden, H.G. (2015). Foundations of Project Management Research: Stakeholders and Agile. Project Management Journal, 46(6), pp.3–5.
Higuchi, M.M. and Nakano, D.N. (2017). Agile Design: A Combined Model Based on Design Thinking and Agile Methodologies for Digital Games Projects. Revista de Gestão e Projetos, 08(02), pp.109–126.
Indelicato, G. (2016). Agile for Project Managers.Project management assignmentProject Management Journal, 47(1), pp.e4–e4.
Layton, M.C. (2017). Agile project management for dummies. Hoboken, Nj: Wiley.
Miller, G.J. (2016). Going Agile: Project Management Practices. Atlanta; Heidelberg: Maxmetrics.
Nasir, M., Sahibuddin, S., Ahmad, R. and SanimMohdFauzi, S. (2015). How the PMBOK Addresses Critical Success Factors for Software Projects: A Multi-round Delphi Study. Journal of Software, 10(11), pp.1283–1300.
Pirro, L. (2019). How agile project management can work for your research. Nature.
Poort, E. (2020). Between the Waterfall Wasteland and the Agile Outback.IEEE Software, 37(1), pp.92–97. Rasnacis, A. and Berzisa, S. (2015). Adaptation of Agile Project Management Methodology for Project Team.Information Technology and Management Science, 18(1).
Ross, J. (2017). Agile Project Management. Serrador, P. and Pinto, J.K. (2015). Does Agile work — A quantitative analysis of agile project success. International Journal of Project Management, 33(5), pp.1040–1051.
Todorovic, M., Toljaga-Nikolic, D. and Bjelica, D. (2018).People-Oriented Principles and Values of Agile Project Management.European Project Management Journal, 8(2), pp.3–8.
Townsend, A., Mennecke, B., Ashmore, S. and DeMarie, S. (2018).An exploratory examination of modes of interaction and work in waterfall and agile teams.International Journal of Agile Systems and Management, 11(1), p.67.