The project manager maintains the project documentation and reduces the risk

The project manager must take care of the project documentation. Many project templates and documents are used in project management practices, such as Project Charter, Procurement Plan, Quality Management Plan, and many others.

When these resources are not sufficiently neat and understandable, the Development team works more slowly and the project suffers. Delays and problems begin.

The main example I can give for poor documentation is from my professional experience. I was a programmer on a project that was quite complex and voluminous, had a lot of interconnected modules, and of course quite outdated and unsupported code. That is why we need Quality control and quality assurance in our daily processes. Reference: Quality control and quality assurance in Project Management and Agile practices,

This, as we all know, is a big headache for every new person in an organization. Poorly written code, excessive interconnections between modules complicate the task of every person who sets out to develop some functionality. Of course, there is a solution for this and that is the development and writing of adequate and valuable documentation. Alas, such documentation was often missing, and at times, even if it was there, the information was quite scarce. Thus, understanding the whole ecosystem of the project was quite a complex task for a person who has little business knowledge about the product itself. The main documentation was the living people who had developed the product some time ago. They were the main means of understanding the subtleties of the product and what needs to be done. This, as we know, has a huge disadvantage – these people will not always be able to respond, we may find ourselves in a situation where they leave, and then all this knowledge can not be documented in a short period.

As the project was also obsolete, the documentation that was written very often turned out to be even incorrect. Our Procurement Management Plan included non-relevant sections. References: Procurement Management Plan template with real example data ( and Procurement Management Plan in project management practices

Over the years, of course, the project has not stood still, on the contrary, it is evolving, changing, but the documentation has not been updated. This automatically means that it cannot be relied on, and many developers prefer to dig into the code instead of turning to project documentation.

However, this has one very major disadvantage – the fact that the code is written in a certain way does not mean that it meets the standards described in the given document.

This is where the other problems come from – when we don’t have clear business documentation, we couldn’t adequately test the project and also know all the dependencies.

This is what motivates me a lot in the next developments of new functionalities to form well-structured documentation that is easy to read for other developers. The documentation itself provided examples of the use of the functionality, how to test it, apply it, and what the different interrelationships are.

Also, I placed in it various specific subtleties and features of the development itself, I applied different images to illustrate what was done and people to have a visual idea of ​​how things happen.
Besides, the documentation of the specific functionalities, I added documentation for testing the functionality, parameters, and subtleties used in the testing. In this way, any new colleague who wanted to get acquainted with the given functionality could easily and quickly read and get an idea. This also reduces the risk of the project. Risk management is easier and everyone is calm. We do not need to be PMI certified and have PMP documents to take care of our project. If we maintain good documentation and plans and low risk, everything will be fine.


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Change during development

Another main goal was to keep the documentation up to date with every change during development. Each time the requirements were changed, the documentation was updated, if necessary, new images were added and separate paragraphs were added.

Another disadvantage that I had found on even a little existing documentation – unclear names. There was very little chance of the name that the given developer thought he could find the documentation to find it. The most commonly used were various unspeakable abbreviations, obscure phonemic titles. This leads to confusion and at times boredom when searching for documentation.

This is what gave me a lesson and when developing my documentation for different functionalities I tried to give clear and meaningful names, to use the so-called glossary of terms, and where necessary to use different abbreviations, to indicate what this abbreviation means. In this way, I even made it easier for myself after a time when I needed to find a document or explain something to my colleagues.


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The project manager analyzes the cause of the defects

In addition to quality documentation, defect analysis is another poorly popular practice. If the project manager does not know the cause of the defects in the project, then how will he guarantee a quality completed project and satisfied stakeholders?

The analysis of the categories of bugs leads me to several conclusions:
Product Owners do not follow the correct style when creating User Stories.

The reasons may be ignorance, negligence, or others.
Poor requirements, Scope change, and misunderstanding can also suggest a team recently working together and unfamiliar with the product, as well as the technical project.

Thus, the popular Scrum self-organized team of programmers may not yet exist. And people can’t judge correctly during triages / grooming/refinement

There may also be a general problem coming from the Project Manager who has not taken care to have a clearly defined Scope and Requirements for the project. They should not be documented and the parameters of the project should not be commented on with the Product Team / Client.

I think that the exact cause can be quickly identified and efforts can be made to eliminate the specific problem. Depending on the source of the problem, the things that can help to depend on the case are:
Definition of Ready for correctly defined services. Resolved and agreed with the Product Manager and the contractor

Scope and Requirements for the project revised by the Project Manager and shared with the Product Manager
Communication with the contractor / technical team to share knowledge, form a common team thinking and behavior
Transparency in the work between the Product and technical team. Eliminate opportunities such as fear of openness for any reason. Stabilizing the team. Team culture.


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The project manager corrects negative situations

From the experience I have with such situations so far, I believe that immediate action is needed to improve communication with end customers and to improve the working environment between teams and management levels within the company. Regarding communication with the current client, I notice the following problems and shortcomings:

It impresses me that the client benefits from a direct channel for communication with the company’s management. At the same time, the project manager does not have a single contact (SPOC) on the part of the client to address/solve the specific problems that arise. In the presence of such contact, both parties are expected to have the same understanding of the current status of the project. Progress on the issues raised should be discussed at regular meetings before the relevant management report is prepared.

The approach of direct pressure and stress on project managers from senior management in the form of “grumbling”, “nervous” or violent expression of dissatisfaction will not significantly improve the situation. If this continues, I expect other key employees to leave. In this case, I propose to improve communication with the project director, and all stakeholders in the form of regular meetings to discuss the current status, the problems that have arisen, and what lies ahead. In this way, the management will have the right expectations and will be able to respond adequately to complaints received from both the client and the internal teams working on the project.

Directly asking questions at any time by programmers to the project manager should be kept to a minimum. This wastes a lot of time and energy. The project manager does not always have all the answers. Problems that arise in a team daily should be addressed to a senior team member or a person with established authority, performing the role of a scrum master.

In my opinion, it is a good idea for each specific project to have a specific product owner with whom to decide which of the tasks can be done on each sprint or beat. This will give us a clearer idea and predictability of the progress of the project.

It would also be good to have management level coordination before each sprint. In this way, it will be possible to address tasks and problems that should be solved jointly by several teams. This would significantly speed up the project work in the presence of dependencies between the individual teams.
It is inadmissible for programmers to complain directly to the owner of the company. If there is still a need for direct feedback, I propose to make an official anonymous survey (survey), which should be sent for completion periodically.


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Addressing a complaint from a specific project manager to only one of the business owners seems wrong. Such complaints should be discussed confidentially in a separate management circle.

All employees of the company who have interaction with end customers must go through specialized training to work with customers. This also applies to project managers.

The negative public statement has already damaged the company’s image. It would be good to publish a well-intentioned public comment in our defense.

In conclusion, I can say that for the time being there is no need for dismissals, on the contrary, we need the contribution of each employee. We just have to learn to work together and follow common rules to achieve the company’s goals.

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