How can we use Agile/Scrum after COVID-19 pandemic to speed up?

Agile is one of the best and very essential work methodologies. The mindset of agile and methodology has a lot to teach us as to how to work effectively when working differently. But here the question of how we use agile to speed up the process after this global pandemic is over. The COVID-19 pandemic has slowed down everything in the world. This requires a fast pace work for the companies to stand again on their feet to come in the line of competition again. Agile is very popular for companies and organizations that seek innovations, speed, and focused customer priorities. It is not the tool used by the IT department rather it is used across the whole organization’s functions. This is also the fact that those companies that use agile throughout their companies are the most successful.

Agile has some really useful benefits which would be really helpful after this COVID-19 situation and the reasons behind are –

  • When things are uncertain then agile provides a regular routine pattern to move forward. When you are virtually standing with your team and reviewing the work then it inculcates a sense of positivity about the normalcy of the situation.
  • Agile also permit for quick shifts like when organization need to change the priorities or their approaches towards their goals. Agile is also used to split the work and accomplish targets bits by bits. when the situation like the current pandemic becomes normal and regular they can go back to a normal pace of working.
  • Agile also empowers the teams to make a decision instead of waiting for permission from the managers. This helps the teams to generate quick and speedy decisions. The COVID-19 has created much pressure on the system  so agile provides a chance to react quickly.

The COVID-19 crisis has promoted the trend of remote working. Agile helps team which are remote to interact. When all are working and meeting up on video conferencing then it promotes collaboration as it equalizes the participants. Agile can help organizations to achieve their goals after the COVID-19 by –

  • Establishing the time deadlines to accomplish the key tasks by time boxing the work
  • Inspecting the work for the quality and partnering with a team member for checking outputs. A kind of constant feedback is necessary.
  • Agile enhance the need for reviewing work rather than just completing and moving on to the next task.
  • Agile also facilitates the teams to make the right decisions over and over again.

Agile can help us during this difficult pandemic situation and also to a new normal life after it. The reason is organizations in the world are not anymore dependent on individual works rather now they are based on an agile mindset of promoting teams. The current condition needs a response based on calmness so that the complex problems can be handled and for this agile is proved to be a beneficial partner in the time of difficulty.

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Steps to take by Change Management during this pandemic for a successful project.

The pandemic has caused havoc in almost everywhere in the World. Affecting small businesses to huge enterprises, every person in the World is somehow struggling from the virus, be it medically or financially.

Where all the people are advised to stay at their houses, businesses need to adopt some certain way to look after themselves too. Managing the people on an individual is being recognized by teams in an increasing number, but that just might not be the case for most organizations. The amount of change and difficulties the organizations are facing nowadays is a great challenge.

Where everyone needs help in this catastrophe, following are some of the measures which Change Management should get involved with during the pandemic, for a successful project:

  • Helping Employees

One of the most efficient ways to adapt to the change in the world right now with their businesses is to include healthcare professionals on their change management team, for them to meet with the requirements of the business.It is vital to greet the staff and the clinicians with a good approach to keep them aware of the type of patients they will be handling, including the patients with the on-going coronavirus. It will be more than necessary to provide all the patients with the care required.

  • Across-the-Organization Communication

Communications should take place regularly for the practitioners to know of all the on-going measures. This way, they will be able to reach as many people as they can who are working in various and different departments, working every second of their day, be it in clinical or administrative departments. One useful point is to make sure that communications always provide a change in improvements in the patient’s care.

As we know, the coronavirus still has a lot of things we do not have information about yet. If the organizations have a firm and stable communication link, they will be able to provide the whole organization with any new information coming out, which will not only keep the staff and doctors safe but will also be a good way to protect the employees. This is not a great improvement in helping to keep the employees safe, but it reduces the exposure in a great number.

  • Change Management and Healthcare Safety

An effective and useful change management strategy can play a vital role in providing the employees with safety, quality care, and surety that the virus won’t be transmitted. Change management is a great way to reach the boundaries and outcomes a society needs during a pandemic, like the on-going one. Healthcare organizations are not alone in this pandemic as the clinicians and employees are also humans after all. They need our utmost support and thankfulness in this pandemic. What we can do is to make sure we do not cause more trouble for any of them in this pandemic and just stay safe.

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How did project management changed after COVID-19 Pandemic?

For some organizations, this recent pandemic of COVID-19 has posed serious challenges in project management. This is especially serious if the organization is forced to experiment with remote working without any beforehand arrangements. It may also look insurmountable if your company deals with bigger projects, portfolios, or programs that involve hundreds of people. This is not a hurdle if you correctly use the right project management tool and methodology. This on-going pandemic has welcome the reality check. As all the minute issues and problems that were tolerated in our daily work is now magnified. These can help us in identifying the factors and elements which can be done in a better way.

This crisis has allowed us to select ways for efficient project management strategy. If your team is globally spread but still you will face similar issues as you were facing before this COVID-19 for example in office the project managers cannot be the top leaders at all the time. That’s right that now you face more physical barriers but issues are the same and you have to find ways to manage the situation. There are three very important points for remote project management that include clear communication with collaboration, centralization of data, and monitoring in an effective way.

  • Clear communication

As now due to social distancing, there are no regular meetings, no colleagues meet up in offices. This provides us a chance to device new ways for communication like building virtual teams that stay in touch and feel connected. For meeting use video conferencing apps that creates a sense of team collaboration.

  • Centralization of data

One of the barriers that team members face in this situation is the missing of authentic data like teams working on excel sheets or collection of data for synchronization. In this lockdown, situation organizations have no option but to centralize the data and information through the project management tools. The managers must see through these tools the state of real-time work and track the progress of each project. Keeping things in a shared location is also a solution. Similarly keeping the management tool and tracking tool system updated is the responsibility of the organizations.

  • Monitoring

The monitoring of project status is also very important and must be seen closely. In crisis companies and organizations can’t bear extra resources and missed deadlines because of it. Your monitoring and centralization system must be synchronized to get real-time information and can take the necessary steps when needed. Build monitoring dashboards and define the KPIs, set the notifications for warnings of potential risk factors.

Getting these three factors right can help you in sailing your boat for a longer time in storm and also improve the project management system of your organization. This is a good time to think deeply and take the action to get the fruits of your hard work in pandemic situations from the results you will get in the months to come.

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How does the project work continue after reopening America?

The project management is becoming critical with the pandemic attack. The Coronavirus is increasing its death rate day by day. As a result, many countries have imposed lock down throughout the country. The deadliest disease caused significant havoc in America. So, the government is compelled to shut down all the public gatherings and other activities. 

As a generation, we have not experienced this situation until now. But this situation has taught many things. Hence, we can see many changes in the coming days. So, let us look at how things will change after reopening in America in the project work space.

  • Remote Work management

The project work will think about continuing on remote work. There are several situations where remote work is not possible. But the actions of some of the employees can be made from home. Many tasks like developing, coding, testing, and many works can be done from remote places. 

Many companies are thinking of making a specific mandatory day of work from home. And it seems the world will move towards more work from home in the future than working in workplaces. 

  • Team Collaboration management

The success or failure of any project mainly depends on how effective its project management. An efficient project manager knows how to collaborate and work as a team. Post pandemic companies will try to increase the collaboration level while working remotely. 

Effective teamwork can able to achieve any of the difficult tasks. The manager must train and motivate the teammates to work as a team for successful collaboration. When the employees start to work as a team rather than giving importance to individual brilliance, the things will change.

Much importance to effective project management

Covid-19 has taught us many lessons. And one of the major ones is to be prepared for any contingency. Effective project management will give importance to risk management. The companies who already taken proper measures are working rather smoothly even in this crisis. 

After the reopening, project work will start to prepare to be ready for any of the future crises. They will begin assessing the problem they might get in the future crises and will work on how to counter them. The plans such as not depending on one source or one location and many more will come into play. It will help to get the inputs if one source fails. 

Investing in the technical infrastructure

You may notice the companies that are equipped well in technical infrastructure are doing well even now. They contain the work remotely without significant problems. Project management will have to think more about providing essential tools for the employees.

Now we are seeing a huge demand for many industrial products that connect the people virtually. The corporates will work towards this by proving each or at least some employees all the infrastructures to communicate from remote places. Procuring laptops, providing a reliable internet source are some examples of this.

Certainly, Covid -19 has changed many things. Now it all depends on companies to work on its project management to overcome these kinds of issues in the future. 

Featured Photo by Matthew Henry from Burst Photo by Mitul Shah from Burst

Project management practices used by health care workers in America during COVID-19

Project is not just one sentence but it is a complete set of managed processes like for example when we say that there is a need to redesign the emergency rooms of a hospital or to improve patient care. All approaches of project management are standing on the four-stage foundation in any organization including hospitals in America and these stages are

To initiate: This step involves the definition of the scope of the project including its budget, risk, and results.

To plan: This involves the planning of each step of a project like setting deadlines, estimating the cost, and assigning roles.

To execute: Start working on the steps of the project as planned then monitoring the task on a regular basis.

To close: The Proper conclusion of the project by initiating the summary of the accomplishment of targets in the projects and lessons learned.

Project management in the health care system is quite different because there are some complexities and risk which are totally different. How these are different is because of the reasons like a high stake, the constant increase in cost, heavy regulations, constant change in the industry, risk of litigation, and diverse stakeholders.

Best Practices by Healthcare Project Management

It is a clear fact that to improve the wellbeing of patients in the health organization, project management is a very critical element. Following the best project management practices are implemented in healthcare settings across America.

  • Communicate with the organization

Communication is one of the most important factors that affect the management of any project that’s why it is important to device a system in which communication is open by getting the feedback on regular based from all departments across the organization, as this will encourage participation. This is the reason to make team members confident and valued by hearing them what they have to say about the potential problems.

  • Process streamlining:

Once the project management process is defined then it has to be implemented and executed. Make full use of the tool that makes the planning and tracking easy. Some health settings also use project management tools that help in the automation of many tasks.

  • The expectation of unexpected:

At the time of unexpected events re-plan the project parts and update it. Either it is some natural disaster, any new American federal regulation, or need of any upgrade in the design of hospital building.

  • Documentation for future use:

This practice is very essential to get information about similar things if they happen in the future. Document all the hurdles, solutions, lessons, and unexpected events like the do and don’ts in general. This provides guidance in the process of management and gives a chance to flourish.

  • Regulations and governance:

This is a practice that is used to develop the sense of any new or future requirement that might be demanded by the healthcare industry by changes that happen in regulations and governance.

The reason that health care workers in America are investing in project management practices is because of the high stakes in the health care industry in which patients’ lives are directly affected. With the use of the right management approach and tool, health workers can save the lives of patients and provide better well being and services. This also helps in improving the daily processes and outcomes of health care workers in the industry.

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Is there an option for the project management team to work from home?

The work from home is the common word we hear these days. The outbreak of Covid-19 has caused all these situations. When the situation went out of hands, all the states have started to lock their countries. It prevented free moments of people from countries to countries and to worsen the situation many places you are not allowed to leave your home. 

Now the work from the home situation becomes inevitable. And the project also teams not an exception from this. Some of the companies are observing this is the best way to approach. Because in the long run, it might prove easy to do cost management. 

  • Project Cost management

The important thing in any of the activities is money. And the same applies to project teams as well. Everybody knows the pain of work from home, but it is the only option left for running the project. But do you do work from home makes it easier for cost management? 

Yes, the companies must invest in providing the necessary infrastructure to project teams to work from home. It initially, without a doubt, not cost-friendly. But it will become more economical in the long run as it saves them money that needed to provide the transportation allowance, maintaining the workplace and other workplace-related costs. 

  • Work from home is not new!

For many companies, work from home is not a new phenomenon. Some small project managers are allowing their team to work from home since it is easy from the perspective of cost management. And many other big players also fixed certain days of compulsory work from home for its employees. 

Even we have many project managers; they handle their team remotely in the usual days. It mainly saves the time needed to commute between the places, especially in the cities where a traffic jam is ordinary. They can spend those time on other things to run the project effectively. 

Let us look into the benefits and drawbacks of work from home options.

The key benefits of work from home options are as follows.

  • Saves time and money

providing the option of working from home not only helps a project manager to do the cost management effectively, but it also helps employees. Most importantly, they can save the time which will go lost in transporting between office and home, and the money required for commuting also will be saved.

  • Work Flexibility

If you work from home except attending the meeting and other stuff, you can able to work at your convenience. This flexibility will not be available in most of the projects. And with the saving of commuting time, it becomes more advantageous. 

Now let us look at the main drawbacks of work from home. 

  • Difficult to monitor the progress. This monitoring problem becomes more if you have a large team.
  • Technical problems – The problem such as power failure network failure in one or other areas will happen if you continue to do WFH regularly. If it occurs during a crucial time, then it becomes a headache for project management
  • Interruptions from family.

To sum up, work from home helps for effective cost management, but it also has some drawbacks. However, after witnessing the Covid-19 situation, all project leads are compelled to work from home, and many are planning to work at least some days remotely in a month.

Featured Photo by Matthew Henry from Burst

How did project management change during COVID-19

The outbreak of Covid-19 has changed everything. It is an unknown enemy for humans. Because of this, almost all countries have taken a significant hit. The economy receives colossal damage. But the impact is not only for the economy, but it affected each and everything of our routine. 

So, there is no need to tell it has even affected the business and our day-to-day jobs. Governments impose lockdown in many countries to reduce the risk of more casualties. It compels everyone to work from home. It is an enormous challenge for many organizations. Project management practices now have to be modified to work efficiently and complete the project on time. So, as per the situation, we need to change and adapt to the conditions. 

Project management practices changes with Covid-19 Pandemic

The pandemic has changed the way everyone works. Most of the businesses are facing the heat, but very few companies like technology-based businesses will see huge demand. The below aspects have changed in Project management practices. 

– Virtual Meetings

The spread of this disease will happen through traveling. So, meeting even your colleagues raises the risk. As a result, now, project management practices should change. The physical meetings have turned to virtual. Businesses are now increasing their technical capabilities to meet the need of the hour. 

– Project Communication

Communication is a basic need in all areas. No matter what, it is crucial in all fields. Now, as a project manager, you must communicate effectively by using mediums like Skype, Zoom, Microsoft Teams, etc. It is not an easy task to bring all together since many challenges your teammates face. But in the emergency project manager has to work with this.

– Impact on project

Effective project management practices should evaluate the impact they are going to face with this disease. Many projects are anticipating the reduction in the budget. Hence many businesses are looking at how to reduce the project cost. As a result, some portion of cuts is going to happen in salaries for people. It is terrible news, but this is all about surviving now. 

– Evaluation of each project by itself

In crisis times, it is sure you have to sacrifice something. There is no doubt some of the projects will be canceled. So, it is crucial to evaluate each project and make the adjustment to save the project. Making compromise with certain things are better than losing the client. 

– Effective collaboration

The lockdown is everywhere, and it is without certainty. So, collaboration is the need of the hour. Many projects are from now on going to switch for remote work for full time. Because of this right remote working tools and communication tools are getting importance. The new culture should be followed that promotes transparency, collaboration, sharing, and teamwork over individual brilliance. 

These are the changes we see in project management practices in the Covid-19 situation. And this will change the way people work for sure. We need to adapt to the changes, and it is one of the main things in any of the projects.

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