Sunday, May 15, 2011

The Great Divide - Project Management vs. Systems Development

The Project Management Life Cycle addresses specific project related activities such as Project Initiation, Planning, Schedule and Scope Management, Risk/Issue/Change Management, etc…  This life cycle can be applied to several disparate project goals whether building a house or a software application.  The same principles and disciplines apply.

The System Development Life Cycle addresses specific product related activities such as discovery, analysis, architectural design, development, testing, etc….  This life cycle can be applied to several disparate product goals whether building a server farm or planning a new system. These same engineering type principles and disciplines apply.

The clear delineation of these life cycles becomes critical when an organization is thinking about maturity certifications such as CMMI. When considering maturity certification the organization is focusing on repeatability and continuous improvement in order to improve quality.   Providing the Project Management professionals within an enterprise the chance to focus on project activities, artifacts and project process improvement, you afford them the opportunity to develop processes and procedures that best provide the results for the project.  Alternatively, providing the engineering professionals within the enterprise the ability to focus on product development activities affords them the ability to refine engineering aspects for the product so they produce processes that support repeatability, process improvements and a higher quality product.

Additionally, this separation of duties provides increased ability for education, mentor-ship and personal growth.  In turn, resources can focus their talents, passions and ultimately their career on the path they desire to travel.  This leads to an increase in specialty and productivity the project team and enterprise will benefit from.

Here is an example of how you can demonstrate "The Great Divide".
The Great Divide - Project Management Life Cycle vs. Systems Development Life Cycle


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