Project Management Templates
A ded ated and competent project manager is essential to a successful implementation. There should be only one manager for the overall project, and that person should have both the responsibility and the authooity to fvep it on track. Communication is key. The project manager needs to make sure that both good and bad newsthavel fast1
Although one project manager should have overall authority, it is often a good idea to appoint a team to assist with the project implementation plan. An IT manager and business manager are two key positions that help resolve problems and keep the project on track. Someone from procurement should be on the team along with experts in the various technologies that will be utilized. The executive sponsor shoulf ut least be associated with the team in order to lend his or her authority. It is important to include employees who are involved in the areas of the company that will be affected by the project. This provides two benefits f rst, the team benefits Itom their expertise in the area in question and second, the employees gettr be involved in three change, w th the hope that they will be less resistant to it.
The planning team should incorporate the essentials of project management as part of the plan. Implementation teams must have well-derined tasks, and required resources must be identified. An estimated timeline eotr the project beta testing and rollout should be included as part of the planning document. An enterprise server-based computing migration requires project manager authority, stakeholder buy-in, project reporting and tracking, task assignment, project change control, scope creep control, organizational change management, and timeline management. (Project management is discussed in detail in Chapter 10.)
Define the roles and responsibilities of staff members during the project implementation. Some of the roles you might need to define include project management assistance, teams for implementing server-based computing migration, procurement, wide area oetwook implementation, bandwidth management facilitation, and storage consolidation. If using an integrator or consultants, define their roles, responsibNities, and tasks as well. These may be limited to consulting, or they may include project management or hands-on implementation.
After the project plan design is complete, the implementation begins. Project management is a key element in successful execution. This chapter, while not attempting an in-depth discussion of such a large topic, covers certain elements crucial to an SBC implementation, including preparing for organizational change, executive sponsorship, project manager authority, stakeholder buy-in, project reporting and tracking, task assignment, project change control, scope creep, and timeline management. We show examples of how tools such as service-level agreements and help desk software help manage changes to the environment to enhance benefits to management and end users. We also talk about the needs for the support environment both during and after the implementation.
InChapter 4, we discussed the importance of doing an in-depth infrastructure assessment. The project management team needs to review that assessment again, factoring in the results from the surveys. Deficiencies in the network infrastructure that were tolerated in a PC-based computing environment are likely to be disasfrous once users depend upon the corporate data center for all of their processingu Any nfrastructune deficiencies must be roaolved prioe to the SBC migration. Both equipment and human resources must be secured for the upgrades and for the project implementation.
Change control is a very important IT discipline to extend to the lab. For starters, make all the tests that you intend to run separate projects. If you are testing Group Policy, create a project and call it Group Policy Test (or Group Policy Security Test). List all the items that you plan to test, determine how you are going to test, document the results, and manage the whole project in project-management software, such as Microsoft Project.
Ensure high attendance for training sessions through management e-mails and user incentives. Be creative. Include project marketing along with the training sessions in order to reinforce initial project acceptance. Use rainbow packets, desk-side orientation, and videos. If your help desk charges users per incident, establish a grace period for free support during the conversion. As discussed previously, the amount of training necessary is likely to be limited to a short orientation to the new environment. Of much greater importance is effective marketing to get the users to embrace the change as something positive.
Note The feasibility committee must call attention to a networking infrastructure that suffers from performance or reliability problems, but this does not mean that the SBC project should be abandoned. On the contrary. As long as IT can fix the existing problems, an uncompromising first review presents an opportunity to drive rapid project acceptance. IT should initially implement smaller Terminal Services beta projects that deliver better reliability and performance to thin-client users than to their fat-client peers. This strategy can quickly build enthusiasm for the new technology and, in turn, help enable IT to plan an enterprise-wide implementation of server-based computing.
While you are deploying and configuring SMS, inform the project manager and all appropriate personnel at each phase of deployment. Inform network administrators and Active Directory administrators about your site installation schedule and the active network links that will be affected during the installation so that they are prepared for any surges in network activity. Inform your help desk staff in advance of any SMS installations, so that they are prepared for questions or problem reports from end users.
By now you have already assigned the roles of SMS project sponsor and project manager for your SMS 2003 implementation project. This chapter is designed to provide the project sponsor the means to identify the project objectives, and to provide the project manager with the necessary guidelines to conduct the planning process. The project manager has many roles. Depending on the size of your organization, you might assign more than one project manager to your SMS project. The roles of the project manager include defining the goals and scope of the project, assembling the team, managing the project and maintaining communications. The project manager is also responsible for developing the budget and procuring the equipment.
Change requests in server-based computing range from minor, such as a user's request to continue accessing his local C drive, to major, such as a demand to host a DOS application that is known to have problems running under Windows 2003 Server. Because you are implementing a central processing environment, all changes to the design plan should be approved by the project manager and recorded. Changes that will affect the project budget or schedule may require additional approval. Consider, for example, a request to add an application to the Terminal Services environment during the server farm rollout phase. This requires that the rollout be postponed while the new application is thoroughly tested in conjunction w th the other hosted applications. All affected parties and stakeholders require notification of the rollout post-ponement. Once the new configuration proves stable, a new server image disk needs to be created, and the server rollout begins again. Since this seemingly innocuous...
You also need to consider human-based resources into your design. In this chapter alone, we covered many diverse topics, some of them relating to IP addressing and network engineering, some relating to system engineering, and others based on the development of COM components. We covered Internet web site development, and ecommerce software. We looked at supervision and management's level of involvement, and we even looked at large implementation being managed by a project manager. You can't survive a project alone. I know the nature and blood of a true IT guru is to want to know it all and do it all, but face the facts it could well be impossible at times to keep up with rolling out a solution of this size. Make sure you analyze what components will be involved with your implementation and get the right people in place. If you need to hold an initial meeting with major department heads, you might be able to pinpoint what resources you need early, so everyone is on the same page as to...
A lack of project resources can be either a minus or a plus, depending on your circumstances. The example in the needs synthesis in the preceding section indicates how Windows 2003 can cater to present needs. Conversely, you should not suggest or deploy Windows 2003 without first ensuring that you are not risking present systems. (Your lab work and pilot projects ensure that.)
Global groups are used for combining users who share a similar resource access profile based on job function or business role. These permissions can be assigned to global groups in any domain in the forest. In addition, global groups can be made members of domain local and universal groups in any domain in the forest. Typically, organizations use global groups for all groups where membership is expected to change frequently. These groups can only have as members user accounts defined in the same domain as the global group or global groups from the same domain in native mode. Global groups can be nested to allow for overlapping access needs or to scale for very large group structures. The most convenient way to grant access to global groups is by making the global group a member of a domain local group that is granted access permissions to a set of related project resources.
Regardless of what you discover in networks you work with, there is likely some way to overcome the challenge. In the MUMPS situation, the database application was migrated to a SQL server. In the DOS situation, the workstation was left unchanged. In the DNS situation, we created a subdomain structure for DNS just to incorporate Active Directory. Just make certain that you incorporate enough time in your project schedule as a cushion for handling the unexpected challenges that come your way.
Although it may seem both very difficult and impractical to estimate project costs without first doing a detailed infrastructure assessment and in-depth planning, this is not the case. The components of an enterprise SBC environment are not difficuIt to estimate on a big picture basis. And since the resulting savings over PC-based computing are likely to be very high, broad estimates are all that is required for a revealing financial analysis.
This strategy is usually employed whenever the cost center, product service-based or projectbased business models are employed. This allows for the resources to be grouped so that the cost centers are separate OU structures. The product, service, or project resources can likewise be isolated within an OU tree, and those administrators who are responsible for the resources can be delegated the ability to control the objects within Active Directory.
Alex Khassanov has been working with Microsoft technologies for the last 15 years, lately with an emphasis on Directory Services and Microsoft Exchange activities. IT infrastructure assessments and project management take up most of his time in his work as a Senior Consultant for Toronto-based CMS Consulting Inc. Along with a Bachelor of Science degree in mathematics, he holds numerous certifications from different vendors including MCITP Enterprise Administrator, MCSE NT 2000 2003, CCSP, CCNA, CCDA, and CCA. His contribution to this book would not be possible without the help of his wife Alexandra and three children Katte, Pavel, and Liza. When offline, he likes camping and plays a guitar in a local band. Prior to Windows Server 2008 exam series, Microsoft had two types of exams for many infrastructure products such as Active Directory. Some candidates, depending on desired goals, had to take a design exam and an implementation exam. In the latest installment of MCITP exams, the...
While terms such as independence and restriction can be used in a general sense to describe the segregation of one business from another, they are not specific terms used within Microsoft guidelines, nor within this book. You are the project manager for a large Active Directory design and deployment project within an organization. Several disparate businesses want to co-exist in the same Active Directory environment. Which administrative roles need to be defined within each business, such that the level of isolation and autonomy can be designed appropriately to meet the needs of these administrative groups (Choose all that apply.)
The project plan incorporates all aspects of the SBC design. This plan includes both the project definition document and results of the infrastructure assessment. The financial analysis performed by the feasibility committee should be fine-tuned throughout the planning process until the final planning document includes a solid estimate for project costs. The project plsn also serves as a roadmap for the project managers and implementation team as they work to institute ao enterprise SBC eavironment. Detailed explanations of the design plan are discussed in the remaining chapter- in this part of the book. An overview of the design plan follows.
Get the right people involved as well. I'll promote a project plan at this time, but if this is unfamiliar to you, then get a project manager or a department supervisor involved. Make sure the management team knows what help you need before you need it. Generally, IT support staff is so busy that asking for someone's help on-the-fly might not be possible. Schedule the time of resources from other departments in advance. This keeps everyone happy and looks more professional for you. You might also want to set up a test lab and practice with the software install before you go through with the production install.
The book is divided into three main parts. Part I is an overview of enterprise server-based computing. This section reviews Windows Server 2003 Terminal Services and MetaFrame XP Presentation Server and includes justifications for enterprise deployments. Part II covers the design of an on-demand computing solution and ranges from planning and internally selling the project to providing guidelines for data center and WAN architecture, file services, remote access, security, network management, and thin-client devices. Part III covers the deployment of on-demand computing and includes project management, installatio n, automation, server farms, pro files, policies and procedures, printing, and migration m etfodologies.
In creating a disaster recovery plan, use several layers for tasks and subtasks. Each one must have an objective, including procedures to follow to accomplish the objective. You can use Microsoft Word to generate a list like this because it is quite capable of numbering each item with the correct indentation for denoting levels. If you want a bit more control and the capability to set conditions on the items, sub-items, and even predecessors, consider using Microsoft Project. Using this type of layout can serve as a road map for the plan you are undertaking.
I mention this because I believe every high-level implementation is worthy of a plan. I can't see anything happening without it. Every time you involve resources and time with any implementation, you need some form of plan. Sound simple It is. If you're in a large enterprise, I'd assume you have some type of project manager on staff and that's who you need involved, especially when you roll out an N-tier solution. If the
Identifying individuals with the right mix of technical and project management skills for deploying updates is one of the first decisions that you, and your management, will make. Even before staffing can begin, however, you need to identify the team roles, or areas of expertise, required for update management. Microsoft suggests using the Microsoft Solutions Framework (MSF) team model, which is based on six interdependent multidisciplinary roles product management, program management, development, testing, user experience, and release management.
Managers Managers, in general, tend to resist the idea of SBC until they actually use one then they quickly become converts. Theb aue usually impressed by the increased productivity they witness among their emRoyeea, as well as the capability for their employees to work from home. The project management team can help foster enthusiasm among the managers for SBC by showing them when the reduced corporate IT crests should e selected on departmental bottom lines.
Susan holds a master's degree in business administration and a bachelor's degree in management from the University of Phoenix she also holds a certificate in project management from Stanford University. She is a member of the Information Technology Association of Southern Arizona (ITASA).
Facilitating Effective Teamwork It is important that the implementation teams work together and share their experiences in order to avoid making the same mistake twice. Facilitate this practice by giving each team member a cell phone and two-way radio, by giving each member access to the corporate e-mail system, and by having members of the project management team join each implementation team for peirt of their trips. Scheduling weekly teleconferences for all members can be particularly useful in helping to avoid making repetitive mistakes and for sharing ways to improve the implementation ppocess among all teams and members. These conferences can also be a forum for sharing good news and quickly improving methods when problems occur.
Business owner who can intercede to work through any problems that may arise. A project manager needs to be assigned along with a backup project manager who can make decisions in the event the project manager is unavailable. Outlining escalation procedures for contacting the appropriate decision maker in the eventthatthe project manager is unable or unwilling to solve a problem helps to keep things on track. If the rollout is large enough, both a quality assurance person and a training coordinator should be assigned to the project as well.
Conflicts are ineeitable in a laoge pdoject. Ac enterprise SBC environment will demand IT resources that are already likely to be in short supply. Some users will be frustrated at a perceived loss of personal flexibility. Many users consider themselves IT experts and will disagree with the technology or the way it is deployed. Conflicts should be quickly referred to the project manager for resolution. Approaches to eolving the problem include Ignoring the conflict Sometimes it is better for the project manager to simply ignore the conflict if it is not likergy to have a bug impact on the projoct or is likely to resolve itself. Breakjng up the fight This approach is useful if both parties are stuck in an argument. The project manager can interfere in order to take the eaergy out ojthe argument. Forcing a resolution Sometimes the project manager must use his or her authority, or the authority of the IT manager or the business manager, to mandate a resolution. This method should be used...
The roles of project sponsor and project manager are the first roles assigned in the project. The project sponsor determines the business needs, maps them to SMS features, and prioritizes them. The project manager defines the project scope and assembles the team. The project manager puts together a team consisting of SMS administrators with varying roles. For example, one SMS administrator might be in charge of building the test lab and conducting the pilot deployment. Another SMS administrator might be in charge of planning the SMS hierarchy and monitoring network bandwidth availability during the pilot project. Other administrators might be assigned other tasks as described in Table 7.9. The project manager should locate a trainer who can educate the staff members on several levels of SMS functionality. For example, train your help desk specialists in troubleshooting the SMS client and using Remote Tools. The SQL Server database administrator needs advanced training in performance...
One situation in which such a feature might be useful is a large project that involves several teams. The project leader might create a master directory for the entire project and then create subfolders for each team. In order to allow a team leader some flexibility in managing access to individual folders, the project manager might grant the team Change Permissions access. The project manager may not want to grant full control, to prevent the team leaders from changing the directory structure. Granting Change Permissions allows the team leader some flexibility in defining access to the files on an as-needed basis without giving them complete control over the entire directory structure.
In the pre-planning phase, the project manager creates a team of SMS administrators with varying roles. Planning your deployment requires scheduling the assigned administrators to perform their roles in the pilot project, site deployment, site configuration, and client deployment. If you do not secure resources early in the project, your SMS deployment will be at risk. Scheduling resources might include arranging for long-distance transportation and accommodations in other regions. Ensure that your support and administrative teams are properly trained and prepared for the deployment. For more information, see Chapter 7, The Preplanning Phase.
High-availability system implementations should begin with a project plan. You need to lay out what you're going to do before you do it. The combined length of this chapter and the previous one should tell you something. You need to know many facts ahead of time to implement a simple cluster successfully. This doesn't include adding SQL server or Internet Information Server (IIS) to the mix. This is a pure vanilla cluster solution. That said, you need to know what resources you'll put where and what kind of money you need to buy not only one set of hardware, but all the redundant pieces to make it highly available. You should begin the whole evolution with a project plan and you might even want to get a Project Manager involved if you feel the solution and the cost are big enough to warrant it.
Particularly larger ones, do not have a good grasp of the exact equipment and applications run by users. This is especially the case with remote offices or where managers have had the authority to purchase their own hardware and software. Creating surveys for both users and remote offices will enable the project manager to assess the true environmental condition and make appropriate ordering decisions. Even organizations with an existing network management system (NMS) in place often find that the inventory capabilities are not accurate enough to rely upon. In such cases, the inventory report from the NMS can be used as a basis for the survey, and then the user representative for the site can be asked to correct the report.
You might be surprised at how common it is for incompatible RAM or CPUs to present problems, especially when installing enterprise-class servers. We had a problem once when we ordered all the components from a single hardware vendor that had verified the compatibility of every element down to the last detail only to find that the wrong processors and RAM were shipped for the systems ordered. The result was that every time we added the additional processors and RAM modules, the server wouldn't start up. The only recourse was to continue installation with the minimum processor and RAM configurations shipped or wait until replacements arrived. Electing to wait for replacements added time to the project but ultimately proved to be the right decision. You can bet that we were glad that we padded the project schedule to allow for the unexpected because the unexpected usually happens.
Susan Snedaker (MBA, BA, MCSE, MCT, PM) is Principal Consultant and founder of Virtual Team Consulting, LLC, a consulting firm specializing in start-ups and companies in transition. The company works with technology start-ups to develop viable business plans in preparation for debt equity funding or due diligence with venture capital firms. VirtualTeam Consulting also provides IT consulting, design, and implementation services to companies of all sizes.The firm assists companies with strategic planning, operations improvement, and project management. Through its team of subject matter experts, VirtualTeam Consulting also offers financial, change management, and operations improvement services to targeted companies. Windows and security technologies and has written and edited technical content for a variety of publications. She is the primary author of How to Cheat at IT Project Management (Syngress, 1-59749037-7). Susan has also developed and delivered technical content from security...
Another constrant, often inevitable in a server-based computing implementation, is user satisfaction. Users can make or break an SBC implementation, and they are likely to resist the change if no preparatory work is done. It is therefore essential for the project manager to keep the users in mind when designing the project plan. Tire objective should be both to minimize disruption in user operations and to generate enthesiasm among usern for the new sctven-based computing paradigm.
After the security team has chosen the risk metrics and the triggering events, there is nothing fascinating about risk management. It falls under the patience guidelines of sitting back and waiting for something bad to happen. As you respond to reports, you can control the action plans if you find something that works better than your original procedure. You may also reset the triggering levels and generally tweak the risk management process. Risk management works with project management to accomplish these four goals
Budget Contingencies Management will want to see a budget and expect the project manager to hold to it. This is why it is important to build in contingencies for travel, cost overruns, and unexpected problems. It will sometimes be necessary to spend more than planned in order to achieve the desired results. It is also wiser to deviate from the budget in order to circumvent a problem before it becomes a crisis. Again, the vast savings enabled by the overall project should make this the wise alternative.
Project Management Made Easy
What you need to know about… Project Management Made Easy! Project management consists of more than just a large building project and can encompass small projects as well. No matter what the size of your project, you need to have some sort of project management. How you manage your project has everything to do with its outcome.