Advertising campaign timeline template, A project timeline is a central component in any fantastic project management strategy. But as many control consultants have learned the hard way, creating and sticking to a timeline is not quite as simple as it sounds. Based on the type of consulting engagement, many project elements – from individuals to technology to operational and market factors — may create unexpected complications and delays, quickly throwing a job off-track.
To start, talk to your customer to specify the significant project milestones that have to be achieved throughout the course of this project. Take advantage of these landmarks as the building blocks of your project timeline. Then, think about the steps that must occur to get from point A to point B, C, D and so on – and also the logical order in which every step must be completed. Think of what task has to be accomplished in order to begin the following. If multiple jobs can be accomplished in precisely the same time, chart them in parallel. If finishing one task entails multiple sub-tasks, it might need a little timeline of its own.
When estimating the necessary time to accomplish each step, talk to the people who’ll be involved, and realistically think about the quantity of time each person can commit to the project. Clearly define any job elements for which the client’s team members are responsible, and set deadlines for accomplishing these tasks. Involve the stakeholders in setting these dates, and gain their devotion they can meet the deadlines. Since you continue to use timelines to track your projects, it is going to become easier to create potential project timelines. Continually monitoring your progress from the timelines gives you historical project management information that will help you gauge the time required for future management consulting jobs.
With a deadline in hand, you’re almost ready to start work. Then, the significant challenge becomes remaining on course with the deadline you’ve created. So before you introduce your deadline to the project team, here are a few project management techniques to bear in mind which could help compensate for unexpected delays as well as the guesswork involved with estimating. The more experience you get in dealing with timelines, the easier it will become to create them. Be sure to continually monitor your progress against your timelines, and note the reason behind any job delays. You can examine the consequent historical project management information when estimating time for prospective marketing consulting projects, making your project management system more efficient and accurate with every project.
However hard you try to keep a project on track, the simple fact isthere are situations when you will need to adapt your project timeline. It usually happens when you or other team members run into something that you did not anticipate, such as an insurmountable technical glitch, funding cuts, operational restructuring or employees turnover. It can also happen when client priorities shift mid-stream due to changing market conditions, or when the customer realizes that what they have asked for represents just a small portion of a bigger goal. By creating a realistic project timeline, and monitoring progress against it within an overall project management strategy, you’re more inclined to keep your management consulting job on-time and on-budget. Even in the event that you fall behind, a timeline gives you a convenient and impressive tool for maintaining your customer informed of progress as well as the reasons for any flaws. And an educated and informed client is more likely to be a faithful client.