Just in Time PM

By MaryGrace Allenchey, PMP

Experienced PM-Professionals know all too well that PM best practices require strategic planning, disciplined execution, and effective control of all required tasks to produce required deliverables and achieve project and program success.

“Just in Time” connotes spontaneous and even impulsive behavior; so “Just in Time PM” seems to be an oxymoron or even the antithesis to PM best practices!

Not So!

PM best practices actually promote and facilitate “just in time management”…. ensuring critical activities are started and completed at the precise moment required…. not too soon and certainly not too late!

Applying PM best practices, PM-Professionals are equipped with comprehensive, succinct and effective tools for successful performance of “Just in Time PM” … Developing an unambiguous Deliverables Diagram and an integrated Work Breakdown Structure promotes, facilitates and optimizes “Just in Time PM”.

Build a Deliverables Diagram to succinctly, clearly and unambiguously define the products and services that your project or program will provide.

Using a hierarchical structure:

Start with the end in mind… the primary deliverable / output / product.

Define major categories of products and services needed to produce the primary product and attain the strategic initiatives that the project or program supports.

Focus on what must be provided, and not how it will be produced.

Drill down each category to the lowest level of product.

This pictorial Charter, the required output of the Initiating Process Group, presents critical project and program components:

Project/Program Objective/MissionSpecific Outputs  / ScopeRequired Resources

It also ensures mega-doses of PM Vitamin C6® to all Project/Program stakeholders; and is the perfect source for development of the Project/Program WBS.

Using the Deliverables Diagram,  build the deliverables-based WBS.  A required output of the Planning Process Group, the comprehensive WBS ultimately defines all the work that must be done to produce the project or program products and services. 

The lowest level of the WBS, the work-package provides the basis for establishing effort, identifying resource requirements, and sequencing tasks to develop the project or program time-line…the project /program schedule… the specific moment critical tasks are required to start and complete… i.e: “Just in Time PM”.

As an effective “just in time management” discipline, PM best practices is the only straight line approach… (the shortest distance between two points) … to successful product and service delivery!


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