After planning a project thoroughly, the next step is to start executing it and assigning tasks and roles to each employee in the project team. Your project execution plan may be excellent, but if the actual execution is poor, then your project would derail. Some symptoms of poor execution are communication issues between the team members, lack of proper data or information flow, incorrect staffing or allocation on various projects, faulty project schedule, etc. After aligning resources in your project execution plan, you should ensure that all steps are being implemented and followed as per the plan. To make project execution seamless and easy, the best bet is to use the right staff scheduling software. Read on to find the steps you should follow to make your project execution a complete success.
What is Project Execution?
Termed as one of the most important and toughest phases of a project, it typically involves meticulously carrying out all the tasks and activities listed in the project execution plan. It also includes keeping in mind the primary objectives of the project while delivering the desired output or service to the project sponsor. Known as the longest and most complex phase of the project management lifecycle, the project execution includes implementing all planned strategies and activities as per the project schedule. Resource scheduling software comes in handy in making project execution smooth and easy.
Stages in Project Execution
There are four stages in project execution
- Initiation – This stage includes initial research, and then the scope if finalized and approved. The next step at this stage is identifying and determining all the project stakeholders.
- Planning – This stage includes creating a detailed project execution plan, setting all the goals, making project schedules, identifying the end results, and then finalizing the project.
- Execution – This stage involves breaking down the project into more achievable and smaller milestones, aligning resources to each task or to the project team, beginning the work, ensuring open communication, and reaching the last stage, that is, the end goals of the project.
- Closure – This stage includes evaluating the end result or outcome, checking for quality, and then finally delivering the project to the stakeholders or client.
Though all the stages are equally important, the project execution stage is the most critical as that is where the real work happens, which makes it critical for the project.
Steps for a Hassle-free Project Execution
Let’s take a look at how to make your project execution smooth and hassle-free.
Leverage the right staff scheduling software
Using the right staff scheduling software can be a game changer for your organization and for your team. The best resource scheduling software available in the market offers clear visibility into all the projects and employees in your organization, the current status of projects, staff availability, insights on resource utilization, and a lot more. Such a tool also automates a lot of manual processes, thus eliminating the need for any manual time-tracking or redundant activities in the execution phase. What’s more? The right staff scheduling software also has the functionality to generate customized reports on availability, utilization, productivity, etc. in just a few clicks. An AI-enabled staff scheduling software such as eResource Scheduler streamlines your processes and helps you manage project schedules, and resource allocation flawlessly, and create project execution plans.
The next logical step is to create tasks under a project. To do this, you should begin by making a work breakdown structure (WBS). This is like a drill down of your entire project into tinier actionable items or tasks. For instance, a website designing task can be divided into smaller chunks of content writing, shell creation, layout, programming, etc. After creating the tasks, the project manager defines what needs to be done in each task and maybe creates sub-tasks and dependencies. This helps in defining a streamlined process for the entire project. Breaking down such tasks and subtasks in a project by using a staff scheduling tool makes the entire process a lot easier.
Set up the timeline
If you want your team to achieve optimal productivity, your next step should be to set up timelines or schedules for each task that you created. If you don’t do that, you wouldn’t be able to reach the goal or target that you had set out for. Having said that, ensure you set a realistic timeline or expectation for all the tasks, otherwise your team can land in trouble later when they can’t achieve it. Resource scheduling software makes setting timelines, and creating project execution plans and project schedules also quite simple.
As a project manager, your primary responsibility is to find the right people for all the tasks. You cannot manage everything yourself. But delegating tasks also does not mean that you are giving away all the responsibilities or tasks to others. Rather, you need to ensure that all your team members perform their roles and responsibilities efficiently. For that, you should build confidence in them by delegating tasks and training them on how to do them. This way, you will give everyone an opportunity to showcase their skill and use their optimal potential.
Provide the resources your team may require
After delegating tasks to people, you also need to provide them with the necessary resources, tools, or training, to do that task efficiently. For instance, if there is a need for specific software, some data or information, equipment, or any other resource needed to complete a task. These resources must be provided right in the beginning so that the team members can manage to execute the project without any hiccups. If not provided on time, it may lead to a delay in the timeline or may lead to project budget overruns. Besides such resources, a project manager should also offer and create an open and empowering environment that fosters teamwork and encourages people to go the extra mile to do their work well.
Open team communication and seamless management
To create an open environment that has smooth communication and a collaborative environment, a project manager must make sure that all required data and information is shared with all team members on time. There should be regular and periodic meetings or status updates on anything regarding the project or the status. Choosing the right staff scheduling software enables planning such update meetings, sending alerts, having open communication, and a lot more. Such a tool acts as a single repository of all important information. It also becomes easy for people to share data and large files for review or approval. You don’t need to send multiple emails for reminders and a resource scheduling tool can even do that for you.
Track project progress
After assigning tasks, it is imperative to check regularly on the progress of various tasks in the project. This way, you can keep a tab on whether the project is likely to get completed by the deadline or not. If any task or milestone is getting delayed, then you can plan and align more resources to get it completed on time. As a project manager, you also have to make sure that your team members log in on time every day and complete their day-to-day tasks. Besides that, you need to handle the dashboards, weekly status reports for stakeholders, etc. Tracking utilization, the status of projects, and creating reports or dashboards become a cakewalk if you implement the right staff scheduling software.
Control unnecessary scope creep
Scope creep happens when clients start requesting changes or additions to the project that was not discussed earlier and was not in scope. If a project manager starts accepting such requests, the project can get derailed as additional effort will cost both time and money. Also, it’s important to remember that all change requests are not required to be adhered to. In any case, if the changes requested are really important, then the project manager should check the feasibility and suggest a change order or additional billing for the extra effort spent in executing those tasks. For calculating planned vs. actual effort, scope creeps, and other project-related information, resource scheduling software is very beneficial as it helps you do all this and more in just a few simple steps.
eResource Scheduler – Top-Rated Staff Scheduling Software for Implementing Your Project Execution Plan
If you are looking for a tool that can help you with seamless project execution and avoid any project delays, overallocation, incorrect staffing, or dissatisfied clients, implement eResource Scheduler. This award-winning staff scheduling software helps to streamline resource and project management, resource allocation, creation of project schedules, and project execution plan. eResource Scheduler enables you to create impeccable project plans, find the best-fit resources for your projects, and enhance resource utilization from 18 - 30%. This AI-enabled, cloud-based tool also helps you to adapt to any scope creep or last-minute changes that could come up in your projects. Have questions? Sign up and take a free trial and experience individualized support to configure the tool according to your industry and business requirements. The tool’s intuitive interface, robust architecture, and resolute performance make it a preferred choice globally. So, choose eResource Scheduler and execute your projects smoothly.