Everybody has a different definition of success – particularly when it comes to work projects. Before you embark upon a project, it is important that you set out what your own definition is. This way, you will be able to tell whether you have done what you set out to. There are several different ways of measuring whether a project was successful, which you will want to look at once it has reached its conclusion. Let’s take a look at a few of these right here and now.
First of all, did your project hit the deadlines that you wanted it to? If not, why not? Perhaps you were unrealistic about what you could achieve in the given timeframe. Maybe you did not conduct a proper risk assessment, and things went wrong along the way that you simply did not anticipate happening. Otherwise, it could simply be the case that you did not put the right people on each task. Once you put your finger on why you did not hit your deadlines as you wanted, it should be easier to adjust this for next time. You may also be able to use a tool such as a Gantt chart to help you out next time.
All projects will have a clear budget that you are working towards. If you have exceeded the budget, you need to work out the areas in which you have overspent. This way, you are more likely to be able to make it leaner and meaner in the near future on your next project. Otherwise, it may simply be the case that you underestimated the costs, and you need to make a more realistic projection in the future.
The process of getting feedback can prove to be an invaluable one. Therefore, it is a good idea to poll each member of the team to work out how satisfied they were with the way things went. They should feel free to speak their minds about the possible improvements next time as these could make such a difference to the success of future projects.
Obviously, the other people you need to question about the success of a project are your customers or clients. You can send out feedback forms to see if they were happy and take into account some of the common trends that you can identify amongst them.
The final way of measuring whether or not a project was successful is to look at the quality of the finished piece of work. Are you happy with it? Has everything turned out the way that you expected it would? If not, what are the areas in which you could make improvements next time?
It may be the case that you want to take each of these project management success measurements or just one or two of them. Whatever the case, it is always worth measuring a project’s success and improving next time.