Why Conduct a Post Implementation Review?
Knowing How to Get Where You Need to Be Can Be Found in Review
Are you frequently pushing uphill to deliver projects on time and on budget? It all starts with your estimation and a good estimation comes from diligently reviewing previous work.
Most people factor time, dollars and human resources into their project estimation. At CAL, we find that many people overlook the value which can be derived from undertaking a Post Implementation Review (PIR) of previous projects.
The Purpose of a Post Implementation Review Is To:
- Evaluate whether project objectives were met
- Determine how effectively the project was run
- Learn lessons for the future
- Ensure the greatest possible benefits have been realised for the organisation
A Post Implementation Review is the last step in your project cycle and is important for assuring all stakeholders in the project that the objectives were met successfully.
Even the briefest of Post Implementation Reviews can provide valuable insights which can strategically improve your estimation of future project effort.
Here Are 6 Key Areas to Cover When Undertaking a Post Implementation Review
- The Project’s Deliverables
- Did they line up with the agreed scope, objectives, timeline and budget?
- How did the team function?
- Were all stakeholders engaged?
- Was the original estimate accurate?
- Resource Levels at Each Phase of The Project
- Were the correct resources allocated, and were there enough of them?
- The Hours Logged for Each Phase of The Project
- How did the actual hours logged in timesheets compare to the estimated hours?
- Activities Which Required Rework
- How much ‘rework’ time was required across the project?
- Why was this rework required?
- Should this time be factored into future estimates?
- The Documentation Used In Your Project
- Was it essential?
- Did it add value to the project or was it simply ‘ticking a box’?
- Lessons Learned
- Are there any continuous improvement actions flowing on from the project?
- These could be captured in the Post Implementation Review or in a Lessons Learned Log attached to the Post Implementation Review
Tips For Conducting an Effective Post Implementation Review:
Remember that any kind of review can often reopen and readdress areas involving performance, mistakes and past criticisms. Be clear that the review is a process important for organisational success. It is not to be used as a personal platform to air grievances or reopen old wounds. If there is a chance of that occurring, it can be better to use an independent consultant to conduct the Post Implementation Review and keep everyone on track.
- At the end of each project allocate half an hour to review and learn
- Begin the process whilst the project is still fresh in everyone’s mind
- If the project needs more time in the real world, then begin the Post Implementation Review now and schedule a final wrap up session
- Ensure everyone involved in the project has a chance to contribute
- Encourage trust, openness and constructive criticism that is objective and impartial
- Create a good transparent documentation report of the insights. These can assist you in more effective and efficient planning in delivering future projects
- Focus on what’s next and how to correct the future, rather than keeping dwelling on the past
- Plan to succeed – in the next project put milestones and measure in place to proactively use the insights gained during the Post Implementation Review
- Hold a celebration event or ritual to close to project
Never underestimate the value of a Post Implementation Review