Engineering project management best practices

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MShttps://dittodigital.co.uk
The author spent the first part of her career working in IT and IT Project Management in the oil industry and investment banking on complex global projects involving the management of outsourced project teams. She now runs a digital marketing company with particular expertise in SEO.

If you want to be successful in any engineering project management role it is vital you have a complete understanding of best practices. There are plenty of APM PMQ, PMP and PRINCE2 courses out there so look for qualifications that will help you to gain the skills and understanding you need. Take a look at what each course has to offer. It may be that you will want to choose some industry specific training courses to attend as well.

Once you have the relevant qualifications and understand the best practices to go with the methods that you have learned, you will have to confidence to lead a project team on an engineering project from beginning to end.

Be organised

Being organised, and on time, is critical for most projects but particularly important when dealing with engineering project management. One of the ways to ensure that everyone in your team is on schedule is by sitting down and working out how long each part of your project should take. The Project Evaluation and Review Technique (PERT) is useful here. It starts by mapping out everything that will need to be done and then sequencing each part into the project. 

It is then the role of the engineering project manager to decide the minimum and maximum amount of time to allocate to each event. This is done using Critical Path Method (CPM). It is then possible to complete an analysis which shows which events cannot be completed until others have. This is very effective in assisting with workflow and allows for fluctuations and constraints which may occur.

Both PERT and CPM are considered to be best practices within the field of engineering project management. These are subjects that are well worth looking into as a part of any project management courses that you undertake if your interests lie in the field of engineering.

Problem solving

Problem solving forms a very important part of any project management work that you undertake, in any field. Here are some helpful steps that you should follow in order to adhere to best practice.

  1. Define your problem, the project goals and the voice of the customer
  2. Measure any key aspects linked to the current process and collect the appropriate data
  3. Analyse the data in order to investigate and then verify any cause-and-effect relationships
  4. Improve or optimise your current processes in order to create a new, future state process. But remember to be prepared to be flexible when managing projects
  5. Control any future state process in order to ensure that if there is any possible deviation for your targets that this is corrected before it has the potential to result in any defects

This method uses quality management methods and statistical data in order to ensure the project is kept in a state where it is moving forward. It is well worth taking the time to ensure that you are following these steps so that you are following best practices on your project.

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Project management has developed into a fully-fledged chartered profession since the granting of the Royal Charter in the UK to The Association for Project Management (APM) in 2017. Training courses for project managers were already available and highly popular to help people gain professional project management accreditation, but with this wider recognition of the profession it is now seen as a desirable career path for many. Whilst the APM has the coveted Royal Charter and continues to develop its APM PMQ (formerly the APMP) programmes, there are also other internationally recognised qualifications that continue to be highly regarded such as PMP and PRINCE2.

Organisations have become increasingly project-focused in this era of rapidly emerging new technologies and they value the expertise that comes with experienced and fully qualified project teams and managers. By investing in their project management capability businesses can be confident of delivering their new projects in time and on budget more often and more successfully. Many major corporation are now training their people to have the right project management qualifications as well as relevant experience, through internal Learning & Development (L&D) programmes; or by using external project management training providers.

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