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McCready and Clark "Project Management in Libraries"

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This presentation was provided by Kate McCready and Kirsten Clark of The University of Minnesota Libraries, during the NISO training series "Project Management for the Information Community: Session Eight, Applying Project Management to Academic Libraries" held on April 12, 2019.

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McCready and Clark "Project Management in Libraries"

  1. 1. NISO Training Series: Project Management Project Management in Libraries The University of Minnesota
  2. 2. Here are your presenters Kate McCready Director of Content Services Kirsten Clark Director of Access & Information Services
  3. 3. Agenda ● Introduction / Meet the Presenters ● Project Management Standards in Academic Libraries ● Benefits of Project Management with Library Administration ● Steps needed to start development ● Project Management Processes Development ● Final Thoughts
  4. 4. Project Management Standards in Academic Libraries What’s changed in our organizations? How are we structured? How have positions changed? Why are standards needed?
  5. 5. Approach to Projects Changed Old ● Project work done in individual departments (supported by the department’s hierarchical structure) ● Focus on physical place-based services ● Focus on your department’s portion of the “project” New ● Shift from only place based to include online services ● Patron driven focus - looking at the whole picture of their experience ● More coordinated understanding required of all involved
  6. 6. New: The Matrix Organization “...functional reporting lines ensure excellence in knowledge, training, and service (essentially, the hierarchy of a department); and project reporting lines center on determining the needs of the user, the schedule for service roll-outs, and the necessities for implementation (cross-department project or product teams or committees)...” -- Harris, C. (2010). Matrix management in practice in access services at the NCSU libraries. Journal of Access Services, 7(4), 203-211.
  7. 7. Specialists & Technologists Academic library work is increasingly specialized!
  8. 8. Result: New Type of Work http://clipart-library.com/clipart/technology-png.htm
  9. 9. Benefits of Project Management with Library Administration What are the benefits? What are the costs? What should be implemented to make it worth it?
  10. 10. Tracking Work Administrators Need to: Understand how staff are deployed Understand the project status Kate McCready’s Trello Board
  11. 11. Shared Expectations Clarity of expectations avoids disappointment! http://www.flickr.com/photos/rustychainsaw/3064088848/
  12. 12. Easy Access to Outputs & Documentation Benefits: ● Easy to find needed information for: ○ communication ○ planning purposes ○ to determine how different projects might come together ○ when presented with a new opportunity where there is potential crossover. ● Ensures data and information is available when staff leave an organization or new staff are brought in halfway through a project.
  13. 13. “...project management provides a common language that everyone can understand. If all project participants refer to a project or steps in the same terms, there is less likely to be miscommunication” -- Abbott, J. A. M., & Laskowski, M. S. (2014). So many projects, so few resources: Using effective project management in technical services. Collection Management, 39(23), 161-176.
  14. 14. Steps needed to start development of project management standards ● Areas needing improvement. ● Administrative support. ● Organizational structure. ● Project staff buy-in.
  15. 15. What Needs Improvement? Conduct Needs Assessment On: ● Project Initiation ● Project Planning ● Project Execution or Monitoring ● Project Control ● Project Closeout Image by Pete Linforth from Pixabay https://pixabay.com/illustrations/progress-growth-success-business-3936332/
  16. 16. Is There Administrative Support? Willingness to Impose: ● New requirements ● Standard processes ● Methodologies By Rogerborrell - Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=49810059 Willingness to Assign: ● Financial Resources ● Staff Time ● Training
  17. 17. Does the Organization’s Structure Support It? ● How does your organization function? Departmental teams or across units ● Will consistency help the work? Or put constraints on a unit that is already functioning well? ● What level of consistency is helpful to getting the work done? ● What will help with communication? https://pxhere.com/en/photo/444545
  18. 18. Is There Staff Buy-In? ● Who manages projects now? Are they wanting help? ● Where will there be resistance? ● Will there be champions for new processes? ● Who would benefit most from the changes? https://pixabay.com/photos/achievement-agreement-business-3385068/
  19. 19. Balancing the Costs & Benefits Bureaucracy Improvements https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:SeesawWithKids_wb.png
  20. 20. Project Management Processes Development ● Proposing work with a great proposal and charter ● Running meetings, capturing decisions, and following up on action items ● Breaking down work ● Tracking work (visibly) ● Communicating with stakeholders ● Defining roles ● Project Closeout
  21. 21. University of Minnesota Libraries Project Management Process Handbook - Fall 2018 https://z.umn.edu/niso-pm-handbook
  22. 22. Project Workflow A clearly defined project workflow can: ● Set expectations for everybody involved in project. ● Help new employees learn the project process ● Identify pain points that crop up regularly and address ways to mitigate
  23. 23. Starting with a Proposal NISO Webinar: Proposal Template ● Idea description ● Background and Rationale ● Resources needed ● Additional information
  24. 24. What makes a good proposal? ● How do I communicate alignment? ● Does the idea align with the library strategic goals and/or with additional department/unit goals? ● What goals does the idea support? ● What are the benefits of our idea for the organization? Does the work span multiple departments/units? ● What if the strategic goals or my project scope changes?
  25. 25. Continuing with a Project Charter NISO Webinar: Project Charter Template Background ● Background ● Purpose ● Relevance
  26. 26. Continuing with a Project Charter Roles ● Project Sponsor ● Project Team Members & Roles ● Stakeholders and Resource People
  27. 27. Continuing with a Project Charter Shared Expectations ● Project Scope ● Project Outcomes ● Project Timeline & Milestones ● Project Budget ● Related Risks & Issues
  28. 28. Meetings, Decisions, and Action Items ● Meetings require an agenda! ● Time Management ● Documenting Decisions ● Tracking Action Items
  29. 29. Meetings, Decisions, and Action Items
  30. 30. Breaking Down Work Work Breakdown Structure ● Breaks down work into smaller outcomes and tasks ● Assigns tasks to individuals or teams ● Estimate the time and effort required for each task
  31. 31. Managing the Project Details
  32. 32. Communication Complete Concise Considerate Clarity Concrete Courteous Correct
  33. 33. Communicating with Stakeholders ● Without information, people create their own narrative. ● Lack of communication is the most cited reasons for project failure. ● Strong communication allows stakeholders to make connections between project work across the organization. ● Strong communication creates buy-in when working with potential ‘work silos’ ● Regular communications should be built into the project plan/charter.
  34. 34. Tracking Work across the Libraries
  35. 35. Project Closeout, Final Report, and Celebrating The following steps ensure that the tail ends of the project are dealt with and should be completed by the project owner(s) or their designate. ● Collect and archive project documents. ● Ensure that documentation (and location on Staff Drive) is passed along to the person(s) assigned to next steps, if appropriate. ● Work with the Libraries Business Office and Sponsor(s) to determine what to do with remaining funds. ● Update staff/team web pages.
  36. 36. Google Documents
  37. 37. Updating Staff Website
  38. 38. Project Closeout, Final Report, and Celebrating ● Responds to outcomes of initial charter ● Provides a clear summary of the project work ● Outlines clear direction for next steps / recommendations
  39. 39. Project Closeout, Final Report, and Celebrating
  40. 40. Final Thoughts ● Successes ● Surprises ● What we might have done differently One year later!
  41. 41. Questions? Kate McCready Director of Content Services, UMN Libraries mccre008@umn.edu Kirsten Clark Director of Access & Information Services, UMN Libraries clark881@umn.edu

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