IT Best Practices

Project Documents: The Silent Success Factor

Project Documents Make The Difference

This post from Project Aria might seem to be on a dry subject at first, but after reading through it you’ll find that maintaining project documents is anything but unimportant. Being able to collect, check, and maintain project documents is important not only for the project currently being worked on, but for the success of future projects as well. Documentation is often maligned as a waste of time and tedious, but in truth project documents are the driving force behind efficiency and enabling a learning organization.

Hard Copy Or Digital?

In the past, project documents were all hard-copy, filling binders and binders full of lessons learned and history. Now the majority of these documents are digital, but the author explains how still having a physical copy of the documents might not be such a bad idea:

Having a good information management system for electronic documents is doable, but it requires a system.  It is no different from dealing with a paper-based system.  However, based on my experience, the digital world makes it easy to hide chaos.  In a paper-based system, if the documents are not organized, the binder is confused and documents are just all over the place in the office.  The visibility of the chaos often create a good pressure to organize.  In order to organize the office, a system is then easily created.  Just the act of creating a physical binder often forces us to create a structure for the project information.

Best Practices With Project Documents

The post then goes into tips and advice on information management, including suggestions on structure, having a common drive (that is, a place where all people can find the documents), making sure documents and their purposes are easy to understand, and keeping a clean file (meaning that only one copy of each document exists, instead of multiple versions).

Read the full post here: http://www.project-aria.ca/2014/02/07/project-information-management/

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