Strategic planning plays a vital role to meet deadlines and maintain productivity for every project on board. For effective strategic planning, the project managers have to visualize the objectives and key milestones of the project. Here, the project roadmap comes into the picture. It not only assists the stakeholders to get insight into the project’s goals but also facilitates managers to allocate resources and expect deliverables in a given timeframe.
These days, many project management software or tools are available for making a roadmap to get the big picture. Here in this blog, we are going to give you effective tips and tactics for making an effective roadmap to manage projects efficiently. Let’s start from scratch and understand the meaning and importance of a project roadmap for modern industries.
Project Roadmap- Brief Introduction
It is an easy-to-follow source of information that enables stakeholders and managers to visualize the project strategically and make critical decisions without putting much effort into understanding the minutiae. Unlike the project plan that breaks down the project into tasks and subtasks, the project roadmap gives a big picture of the entire project completion process.
Simply put, the project roadmap acts as the project dashboard from which stakeholders and the top management can track the progress of the project while assessing all the strategic details through charts, updates, and graphs. The project roadmap considers all the data generated from an ongoing project and converts the same into structured, actionable insights.
What to Include in Project Roadmap
The project roadmap is aimed at showing the link between various variables and their role in accomplishing the project.
Here is the list of major components that should be included in the project roadmap-
1. Key Objectives
The project’s key objectives should be included in the roadmap. In other words, the project roadmap should answer the questions like- what are the goals for the particular project, how we can achieve them rapidly, and can we achieve these objectives on time. The project roadmap includes all the targets, deliverables, resources, and tasks associated with the particular project. It helps the company management to find whether the effort is on track to achieve all the key objectives.
2. Milestones to be Achieved
Milestones for the project indicate various levels within the project. In a way, the milestone tracking offers a unique and effective way to measure the progress of your project by checking the outlined completion levels. In other words, milestones are included in the project roadmap for tracking the completion levels of the project.
3. Details of Deliverables
Project deliverables are nothing but the material results that are aimed to be derived from a project within the given time limit of the project. Stakeholders can readily measure project progress simply by viewing deliverables in the project roadmap.
4. Management of Resources
It involves a count of the resources allocated to a project for measuring their impact and make real-time decisions for increasing or decreasing allocated resources. Here, the project management software can provide real-time data regarding the performance of employees, and you can easily modify the allocation based on this data. It helps you gaining objectives quickly.
5. Timeline and Associated Risks
The project management timeline is important to measure the project’s progress and find out how long it will take to accomplish the project. While considering the timeline along with other factors, we can easily and accurately visualize whether the project is on track or at risk.
Finally, the project roadmap also contains the potential risks or obstacles that may prevent the successful completion of the project.
After discussing the necessary factors to be included in the roadmap, let’s go through the top strategies for making an effective roadmap in project management.
Choose the Right Project Management Software
It is essential to choose the right project management tool for building an effective project roadmap. The project management tool can show you the employee’s tasks, their performance, and overall productivity of the company that can achieve the deadline. These tools can provide the real-time data from different sources and the project manager can track and visualize the process with ease.
For example, TaskOPad, a robust project management software, takes care of necessary aspects like dependency tracking, project collaboration, and time tracking for making an effective roadmap.
- Identify Project Objectives
The second step is, of course, defining project objectives that can be tracked in the later stage of the project to measure the progress. The project tracker tool can track the predefined project objectives like the target audience and scope of the project. It is necessary to define project objectives in a way that we can get an answer to the question ‘what are we aiming to achieve?’ in trackable terms.
- Determine the Timeline
Timeline or project deadline comes next. Based on the project objectives and other variables including the scope of the project and overall efficiency of employees, the management can define the project’s timeline. It involves extensive planning on how much time it will take to accomplish the project.
- Make a Mock-up
Once we have a project tracking tool, defined objectives, and determined a project timeline, we are ready to create a mock-up. Creating task dependencies can make it easy to track the project in real-time.
- Get the Reviews
As mentioned above, the project roadmap is designed to facilitate the key stakeholders to check whether the project goes in the right direction. The project sponsors or stakeholders can give their reviews about the roadmap after going through it.
- Keep on Updating the Roadmap
As the project kicks off, the project managers need to keep updating the project roadmap to drive the project successfully.
In a nutshell, project roadmaps play a critical role in accomplishing various projects across different industry sectors. When the roadmap is properly created, the project can be successfully managed. All the strategies mentioned in this post will help you create the effective roadmap. Project roadmaps offer a reliable source of actionable insights for the project management team and stakeholders of the project. With a robust and feature-rich project management tool like TaskOPad, you can successfully create an effective roadmap for your upcoming projects.
Originally published at https://www.taskopad.com on December 2, 2020.