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4 Types of Dependencies That Can Derail Your Project

Leaders must manage project dependencies as they can hit the timeline, deliverables, and budget of other projects in the portfolio. Dependencies can be due to delivery, procedures, regulations, technology, or artefacts. When a prior project in the delivery pipeline fails, the next in line must make do with the leftovers. Improper planning and inability to identify potential dependencies can put your projects at risk. In this article at PPM Execution, Tim Washington warns about the 4 types of dependencies that can derail your project.

Knowing the Project Dependencies

As a member of the senior management, you must monitor projects to prevent dependencies. The majority of the projects report falling behind schedule due to last-minute technical commitments. The dependent project can still manage to stay on track by minimizing scope or rethinking the entire scope. To avoid such repeat occurrences, you must review the gate phases closely. Station a program manager to look after these dependencies. Washington talks about the four types of dependencies that hit the majority of the projects:

  1. Technical Glitches: When the start of the next project depends on the deliverables from the previous project, it is a technical dependency. For example, you need to wait for the hardware department to set up an infrastructure before a project starts.
  2. Overshooting the Schedule: Schedule dependencies occur when the previous project fails to deliver on time for the next to begin. For example, a project is waiting for another project to complete data warehousing before handing over system controls.
  3. Resource Overrun: When your resource is performing a critical role in another project along with yours, you are experiencing resource dependency. Though the resource manager takes care of this, unavailability of critical resources can stop a project dead in the track.
  4. Information Gap: There are two ways to look at information dependency. For the first type, the previous project must pass on the established standards and protocols to the dependent project. The information dependencies for the next project would then be the framework, processes, rules and regulations, operations, and approaches. Another type of information dependency is your reliance on the previous team to share their lessons learned from the project.

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