When the project is underway, one of the most crucial things is to identify deliverables and critical success factors needed for implementing the project. This step is essential for the project’s success as correctly identified deliverables allow managers to see the amount of work needed before the project is completed. Moreover, having drafted a list of deliverables, managers can calculate the approximate cost of the project and compare it to the expected outcome, be it in financial terms or from a value perspective. Thus, identifying deliverables allows the managers to see at once whether the project is beneficial, while critical success factors are instrumental in defining crucial steps in project implementation. This paper looks upon the notions of deliverables and critical success factors and their respective roles in project management.
Deliverables can be seen as stages in the project necessary for its successful completion. To understand what deliveries are needed for the project, managers look at the initial phase of planning, where project goals, end-users, and people involved in work over the project are identified. The next step is to outline the critical processes needed for the project completion. Depending on the project scope, these processes can be broken down into smaller tasks using Work Breakdown Structure (WBS). Depending on the essence of the project, deliveries can be tangible and intangible. Tangible deliverables deal with material inputs, such as equipment or supplies necessary for the project. In contrast, intangible deliverables define the processes and workload of team members in terms of time and essential tasks (Jaber et al., 2018). Moreover, software and programming can be a part of intangible deliveries.
Identifying deliverables may be a time-consuming process as it involves different group members. In medical settings, these can be doctors and nurses who deal with the medical side of the issue and IT consultants who determine what is needed in software and hardware. Project initiation meetings can be arranged to work out the timetable for the completion of different tasks and decide which group members will be responsible for necessary procedures. Moreover, a timetable for different steps in the project may be drawn up and if there are any delays, it is easy to see their impact on the overall timing of the project; people responsible for the delays can be punished or replaced or given the second chance depending on the circumstances.
Critical Success Factors
Critical Success Factors are things that have the largest impact on the successful completion of a project. As Aquilani et al. (2017) state, “CSFs may be viewed as variables that determine firm performance through successful implementation of TQM [Total Quality Management] (p. 197). Different authors single out a different number of CSF depending on how many factors are considered for the team’s firm performance.
“Leadership/top management commitment/top management role” and “customer focus/ satisfaction” were identified as top CSFs by the majority of studies. It is hard to overestimate the role of the leader who can inspire and guide team members on their way to success, enables extensive communication between team members, and coordination of project teams. The customer, being central to any project, is not directly involved in project making. However, his vision of a final product or outcome of processes exerts significant influence on the successful implementation. Since the customer’s view is instrumental in deciding whether the project is successful or failed, it is advisable that he should be consulted on the draft and suggest amendments.
Among the other CSFs, the most notable is “continuous improvement,” “human resource management,” and “teamwork.” “Continuous improvement” is vital since processes of evolution underlie today’s competitive environment, and ongoing change has become the main factor of everyday life (Frefer et al., 2018). Technological processes, tools, and even software may change to the project completion, especially if it takes some time to be elaborated. Ignoring these changes would mean that the project will become outdated and irrelevant in a few years, if not months. Conversely, embracing these changes and implementing them will allow companies to be innovative and competitive.
“Human resource management” is an essential CSF in that it allows each team member to be involved in exactly the kind of work he has a propensity for. Successful managers can find what each team member is good at and give him tasks that do not go beyond the scope of his abilities. In this way, the team is successful in the implementation of the project. “Teamwork” refers to the ability of team members to cooperate effectively to complete the given tasks.
Defining deliverables and critical success factors is essential for successfully completing any project since they break project goals into more tangible and efficiently completed tasks. Moreover, they allow to share responsibility among all team members and appoint tasks so that each team member is involved in what he likes most. If there are failures in some stages, culpable people are easily identifiable, and measures can be taken to improve the situation without endangering the whole project.
Aquilani, B., Silvestri, C., Ruggieri, A., & Gatti, C. (2017). A systematic literature review on total quality management critical success factors and the identification of new avenues of research. The TQM Journal, 29(1), 194-213.
Frefer, A. A., Mahmoud, M., Haleema, H., & Almamlook, R. (2018). Overview success criteria and critical success factors in project management. Industrial engineering & management, 7(1), 1-6.
Jaber, H., Marle, F., Vidal, L. A., & Didiez, L. (2018). Criticality and propagation analysis of impacts between project deliverables. Research in Engineering Design, 29(1), 87-106.
Deliverables and Critical Success Factors (CSF)
|Charter (Includes Budget)||The organized plan for the change including costs.|
|Scope||The official plan for change with measures of success.|
|Communication Plan||Communication with parents as to the measures to control children’s body weight|
|Developed Education||Parents education concerning healthy eating habits|
|Attending Meetings||Meeting with parents and children aimed at propaganda of healthy lifestyle|
|Organize Daily Reminders for Parents and Children||Reminders to parents and children as to the optimal portion of food, calories, intervals between food takes.|
|Measurements||Measurements of body mass index of adolescents of school age of sixteen, measurements of environmental factors involved in the formation of excess body weight|
|Anonymous Polling as to the Weight Increase/Decreasing during the project period||Anonymous polling as to as to the weight increase/decreasing during the project period|
|Project Outcome||Report out project outcome at the completion of the one year period.|
Critical Success Factors (CSF) by Priority