Architect's Master Class

Project Design

IDesign's project design consulting engagement is a week-long, effective and efficient way of designing the project required to build your software system. IDesign will help your project manager and architect produce not one project plan, but several plans representing different project design options. Each of these options is a structured, comprehensive and objective combination of schedule, cost, and risk. It is then up to the project manager and the architect to present these options to management and to recommend the best project design option.

IDesign arrives at these project design options using a battle-proven, repeatable, highly engineered analysis and design method that stems from your system architecture. As such, the pre-requisite for the project design engagement is your system architecture.

IDesign will analyze the dependencies between all activities in the projects, from building services to UI design and system testing. IDesign will next use both dedicated tools and methodology to estimate the duration and effort involved with these activities. For each project design option (which comprises of resources availability, priorities, constraints, ability to work in parallel, etc) IDesign will do critical path analysis to determine the overall duration and cost, and will quantify the risk using our original risk modeling technique. Each option is systematically captured using not just a Gantt chart, but also a network diagram, staffing distribution chart, planned earned value and planned effort. All these in turn help you assess the viability of each project design option.

IDesign will then compare all the options in terms of required productivity, risk and feasibility, and even determine the optimal plan. Our track record in designing projects is unmatched in its accuracy and reliability. Our method for project design converges quickly to the best project design option while eliminating gambling, death marches, wishful thinking, and expensive trial and errors.

Through the engagement IDesign will share our thought process, experience, insight, tools, ideas, techniques and templates, so that you understand the behavior of your project and how it is affected by limiting resource and schedule, and what recurring techniques and approaches to leverage as you cope with constraints.

IDesign will also equip you with the tools and techniques to use once the project execution begins. IDesign will show you how to correctly handle changes to priorities, resources, deadlines, estimations and features, allowing you to constantly stay on schedule and on budget.

Click here to watch an MSDN webcast outlining some of our planning and tracking techniques and here for additional information.

While we will design and educate you and your team about project design and the possibilities and even open new horizons, we recognize you often need to educate others even on the basics. You may find our project design call for action instrumental in getting support for transforming your environment.

Project Design Health Check

IDesign offers multiple options for assisting your company with project design needed. In addition to designing your project, you can bring your project design for us for a thorough heath check. This service is geared mostly for veterans of the Project Design Master Class who are already well-versed in project design; however, any experienced architect or project manager will benefit from the project design health check.

The health check includes verifying the various project design decisions and calculations you made. We will even produce the project design artifacts for you if all you have is a bear bone project plan.
For each of the critical project design items we will either approve of what you have designed or point out problems and recommend how to go about fixing them.

If you already have several checked and approved project design options, we will review or construct the time-cost curve and the risk curve for your project, then discuss and recommended the best option that balances duration, cost and risk.

Think of the project design health check as going to the Project Doctor to analyze your lab results for a clean bill of health or to get on a treatment plan.

The heath check will review or provide the following aspects of the project design:

  • Project network consistency and integrity
  • Network dependencies (as well as providing streamlined network if needed)
  • Correlation of the expected duration and cost based on the architecture
  • Project cost calculation including total cost and breaking into cost elements of direct and indirect cost
  • Staffing distribution chart as well as peak staff and average staffing levels
  • Project plan and earned value chart
  • Project efficiency value
  • Project complexity value
  • Risk numbers including activity, criticality and Fibonacci risk, both arithmetic risk and geometric risk calculation if relevant
  • Risk decompression points

The project design health check is very affordable. The health check is conducted over a teleconference and lasts 30-60 minutes, where we provide you with the project design heath check report we have prepared as well as the recommendations. In case where you wish us to review how you have improved the project design or when you wish to have a periodic heath check, we also offer a subscription plan of 12 sessions.

Click here for Project Design Success Story of a veteran of the Project Design Master Class that IDesign helped with a few project design health checks and click here for additional information.

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