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Founders, Here’s How to Reduce Uncertainty in Project Management

working on an IT project
Image credit: Canva

The roots of a tree lie underground, and even when hidden, they are vital to the tree’s health and growth. Even if we can’t see the roots, they’re there. Similarly, while the underlying reasons for a project’s health difficulties may not be immediately apparent, they are critical to understanding and resolving potential problems. When working on IT projects, there are dozens of jobs to be done that are related to supporting infrastructure, and they are critical foundations of the project itself. 

The roots are responsible for the tree’s stability and nourishment, and there’s an expression saying that the tree is only as strong as its roots. And this observation is also highly applicable to IT initiatives, particularly regarding startups

Keeping IT project work on track necessitates maintaining a healthy approach and framework that supports application development, while keeping in mind that most tasks must be tied to the app’s roots. It eliminates ambiguity, creates a strong foundation for application development, and mitigates possibilities that some unforeseeable or unexpected event would occur and cause damage. Not only when developing an application, but also later while maintaining it.

Concerning project management, there’s no denying that ambiguity can be a major roadblock. It refers to the various sizes of IT projects. When large ventures are backed with adequate resources, they can usually handle crises. However, what is not the world’s end for large organizations may be an absolute disaster for startups. 

The worst project bottlenecks happen when ambiguity is not removed early on. If we leave the most uncertain elements until the end, we’ll have to deal with them shortly before the deadline comes. And the most uncertain aspects always have a high possibility of expanding in size and level of detail. It could usually be game over for startups working on their MVP or scaling up.

So, considering risk mitigation, it is vital to keep the focus on the core line of work, and numerous strategies exist to reduce uncertainty and raise the probability of success. Below is a list of measures that startups can take in the early phases to reduce uncertainty in project management.

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How to reduce uncertainty in project management

Gathering requirements

Before development begins, clearly stating the project’s requirements can help ensure that everyone participating understands what is anticipated. It is also a good idea to develop a good contact network with all people involved in realizing the project to get everyone engaged. This method can assist in preventing confusion and misunderstandings, lowering the likelihood of future difficulties.

Defining metrics

The scope is determined at the start of every project. Success metrics should be defined ahead of time to avoid wasting time and resources. And when it comes to startups, every man hour counts. Success metrics indicate how a specific project will move along the trajectory and add value to the business. Metrics need to be detailed and meaningful, with numbers, and they should also assist in establishing the right path. But the purpose is not to measure per se but to use metrics to efficiently allocate resources on time. 

Prototyping

It is one of the most effective strategies for removing ambiguity at the beginning of a project. Prototyping is not simply something only designers do but embraces the entire tech stack. Prototypes allow IT startups to test the feasibility of their ideas and uncover potential obstacles and problems before they evolve into significant issues. This method can enable quick and frequent iteration, saving time and resources in the long run.

UX iteration

You may drastically reduce project uncertainty by designing UX prototypes before even writing a single line of code. By putting prototypes in front of people, a startup can immediately receive feedback and iterate, decreasing uncertainty and the risk of failure. While writing software code may appear counterproductive, designing UX prototypes allows teams to align early and sync from the initial concept to the finished product.

Modeling architecture

Not only do the user-facing components of the program require prototyping. It is also relevant for tech startups that want to ensure that the manner they store and access data is correct. This is critical for reducing uncertainty, even if confident about the implemented database schema. Starting with the architecture prototype may also ensure that any noticeable future improvements to data models will be easy to implement.

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Decreasing uncertainty is critical for project success. Startups may significantly reduce tension and increase the likelihood of success by using all the offered methods to provide a robust software development framework built on excellent practices rather than just the tech stack. The mentioned tactics are not comprehensive, but they are certainly among the most effective means of reducing ambiguity and securing IT project success.

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https://therecursive.com/author/pawel-poltorak/

Pawel Poltorak is an experienced CMO and Strategic Advisor in the tech sector, driven by a passion to help founders, entrepreneurs, and investors to succeed. As an author, he explores and writes on CEE startups and new technology through the lenses of marketing, economics, sociology, and geopolitics.