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Project Alignment


Are Your Projects Aligned?

Beginning of a project management focus series on Business Process Management (BPM) and Enterprise Architecture

BPM is the concept of managing work items through a defined process. The items are identified and monitored, using staff resources and software applications. The IT systems component of BPM is typically the primary enabler. Later we will describe and detail these IT systems which allow people to model their processes and manage them efficiently.

But, down at the PM level, you need to keep in mind the goals of the organization, and how your team's efforts align to higher-level business processes and priorities.

  1. Overlap - Is your group building a solution - technical or otherwise - that solves a problem that is already partially solved?
  2. Stand-alone - Is your project disconnected from the process flows elsewhere in the organization?
    • Linkages: Does your project's result (it's outcome) solve a problem that can and should be leveraged by other areas.
  3. Quality - Is the quality of your project's outcomes and results monitored, including the operational phase? How will the organization measure the quality?

Stovepiped vs. Thoughtful Integration

Is your project team - and it's work products - parceled out in stovepipes? An example is the Sales & Marketing V.P. who ramps up for a product launch by hiring temporary offsite phone support, leasing desks and phones, and later provides the IT department with funds for the computers needed. But the IT department was purchasing and rolling out IP-phones (internet protocol) phones which would be less expensive to operate, and more integrated than the leased phones. The Marketing manager, who is handling the customer support expansion, gets hit with a phone system that must be converted to match the enterprise architecture developed by the IT staff.

Organizations strive to continue to enable automation of business processes, adherence to enterprise architecture, and perfect their ability to adapt to competitive and customer-driven pressures to improve.

On to Project Failure.

© 2004 P. Ford W orsham



Business Process Modeling Language

(BPML) - a language that can be used to model components of business processes, and is developed by the Business Process Management Initiative (BPMI).

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