Project Management Office
Texas A&M University

Requirements

The requirements for project management at Texas A&M are presented in State Law and University Policy:

TAC 216
  • Requires an institution-wide approach to project management 
  • Presents criteria for project management practices
SAP 29.01.03.M1.21
  • Describes the requirements for developing and implementing new application software in the University.
  • Requires the use of a system development life cycle (SDLC). See PMO SDLC Training and Templates)
    SDLC requires creation and execution of a plan for software design, development, and deployment.
  • Defines major application

Major Applications

Major Applications must be reported using one of the following tools

  1. Project Risk Assessment - A tool to identify project risks and risk mitigation tactics. The tool can be used for any project and is required for the development or implementation of major applications.
  2. PowerSteering - Users of this PPM tool may also use PMO provided templates and tag their projects for reporting in lieu of using the PRA.

Texas A&M University Project Management Framework

The Texas A&M Univesrity Project Management Framework defines the requirements for an effective Project Management Methodology. The PMO has established lean and traditional methodologies that units can adopt or modify for use. Also, the IT Advisory Committee's Project Management Essential Elements is an excellent resource for creating a methodology. The application of the methodology should be appropriate to the size and complexity of each project. The following items should be addressed in any project management methodology

Roles

Unit Head

  • Establishes the unit's project management methodology and continuous improvement process.
  • Establishes guidelines defining what constitutes a project for the unit.
  • Ensures a project sponsor is assigned to every project.
  • Identifies project stakeholders.
  • Terminates projects that are no longer in the business interest of the unit.
  • Reassigns sponsor responsibilities if the project sponsor is unwilling or unable to complete the project.

Project Sponsor

  • Ensures a project manager is assigned to the project.
  • Defines a high-level vision for the project.
  • Approves the project's scope and objectives.
  • Identifies the project constraints and risk tolerance.

Project Manager

  • Identifies the resources available to the project, including personnel, funding and technology.
  • Outlines a project schedule that includes deliverables.
  • Identifies assumptions, limitations and risks.
  • Communicates progress regularly to stakeholders.
  • Secures agreement from the project sponsor that the project is done upon completion of deliverables.

Stages

Initiating

In this stage, methodologies must address:

  • Categorization of the Project using a tool such as the Initial Risk and Complexity Assessment
  • Preparation of a project charter. Charters must address all of the following topics at a high level:
    • Name of project sponsor and any executive sponsors
    • Stakeholders
    • Objectives
      • What are we trying to achieve?
      • Why is this important?
    • Scope
      • What are we going to do?
      • What is explicitly not going to be included?
    • Rough schedule and budget
    • Risks
    • Constraints
  • Approval process to proceed to planning

Planning

In this stage, methodologies must address:

  • Preparation of a baseline plan that addresses the following topics in detail:
    • Roles and responsibilities
    • Scope
    • Refined schedule and budget
    • Risks
      • What can go wrong?
      • How will we prevent it or respond if it happens?
    • Quality
      • Acceptance criteria
      • Applicable standards
    • Project communications
    • Change
      • How will changes to scope, schedule and budget be requested?
      • Who will review requests and make decisions?
  • Approval process to proceed to doing (executing, monitoring and controlling)

Doing (Executing, Monitoring and Controlling)

In this stage, methodologies must address:

  • Building and training the project team
  • Conducting a kick-off meeting
  • Tracking progress and making necessary updates to the project plan
  • Capturing and communicating requested and approved changes
  • Obtaining sign-off for project deliverables

Closing

In this stage, methodologies must address:

  • Closing cancelled or incomplete projects
  • Identifying and addressing any open issues on the project
  • Transitioning deliverables to operations
  • Conducting lessons learned for continuous improvement
  • Obtaining final acceptance of project completion