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Tools to improve your project management results

18 February 2016

Good project management starts from the ground up. Arm yourself with the right tools for the job and you’re halfway there. Often the key to success is as simple as using organisation strategies that work for you and your team.

Good planning means smooth sailing

There are many standard project matrices that you can customise to each individual task. Try Geoff Crane’s Project Skills Matrix to manage your project resources. Crane devised his own matrix after encountering logistical issues in a project. An easily-avoided error unexpectedly turned into a major issue – he wanted to make sure it never happened again.

After implementing the matrix, his project management execution became much smoother. It really was as simple as making sure every staff member was aware of their roles - down to the very last detail. For this to happen, it is crucial that every individual is open about how their skill set can contribute to the project, and at what level.

‘I have used this simple matrix on all my projects ever since,’ says Crane. ‘It’s a very simple tool, and while it’s subjective and relies on self-assessment, it’s a great way to quickly identify any knowledge gaps or single points of failure, and it takes no time to complete.’

Project management doesn’t have to be a nightmare

Planning for your project from the outset is the best way to succeed – at the bottom of every great skyscraper is a solid foundation. When you have the right tools, you can identify knowledge gaps and crunch points in a team early on in a project lifecycle. Before you know it, your project is completed on time and on budget with the kind of ease and professionalism that might have taken years to perfect.

Find a tool that works for you

Different methods will work better for different people. It is best to experiment with a range of organisational tools to find out which work best with your particular endeavours. Another resource that receives great praise within the project management communities is Michael Taylor’s Project Status Template.

There’s also the option to get creative and make your own – it can be tailor made to suit your requirements, your stakeholders and your team.

To find out more about how to build your project management skills with a progressive postgraduate qualification, that can be transferred across industries, call Southern Cross University on 1300 589 882 and talk to us about our 100% Online Master of Project Management.