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Pull the Plug on an IT Project Only as a Last Resort

It’s the last thing a project manager wants to consider, but it’s the first thing that should be addressed when a project is spiraling out of control. Mary Shacklett discusses when to pull the plug on a problem project in an article for TechRepublic. But before you brief the stakeholders with the distressful news, consider some workarounds and preventative measures that could save the project’s life (and your job).

*Ahem*, Your IT Project is Broken

Oftentimes big projects go bust. At some point, the PM has to have enough courage to say, “This is where we are, and this is what we can do to salvage the wreckage.” In the short term, this may not seem like such a wise choice (from a career standpoint) but thoughtful project sponsors will get the picture and work with you to make things right.  

Virtualization is 20/20 in Foresight

Another approach to rebooting a project in crisis is to stop forward motion and take some time to consider software virtualization.  The advantages of letting stakeholders see realistic simulations of the final product pay for themselves many times over:

When it is time for end business users to perform an “acceptance test” on the final software product, they often come back to IT and say, “This isn’t at all what we expected!” By this time, so much anticipation and expectation has been built up that it could cost a project manager his job.

The fact of the matter is that 45% of software development projects miss their target goals. That’s a devastating statistic when you consider the amount of time and resources that could be otherwise saved by simply giving sponsors a sneak preview.

Read the full article at: http://www.techrepublic.com/article/pull-the-plug-on-an-it-project-as-a-last-resort/

About Eric Anderson

Eric Anderson is a staff writer for CAI's Accelerating IT Success. He is an intern at Computer Aid Inc., pursuing his master's degree in communications at Penn State University.

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