Every project comes across different types of issues. That’s why project issues management is an important area to be covered by project managers. The issues might be caused by various things, but it’s project manager’s job to identify and track those issues and get those fixed so the project can be completed on time, on budget, and with required quality.
We have already discussed quality in our last post on project quality management. Managing project issues well not only helps in other areas of the project, but also helps with project quality. To understand more about quality, you can check our last post.
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Project Issues Management
The project issues management is an important area of the project management and can’t be ignored. If a project manager ignores the issues then the project will get into trouble very quickly and easily. The project issues management requires that all the issues are proactively identified, logged, tracked and then taken care of properly. The project manager can delegate and assign those issues to the respective departments, or team, or an individual, but he can’t put them off. The project manager uses various tools to manage all such issues.
What is Issue Management?
What is Issue Management? An event or circumstance that can adversely affect a project if it is not taken care of is known as an issue. The process of effectively and proactively logging, tracking, reviewing, and following up such issues is called issue management. It is the project manager’s responsibility to manage such issues. Proactively managing such issues means that the project manager keeps looking for any scenarios which can cause problems in future and hence create issues and plan to take care all such issues before they occur.
Process of Managing Issue
Here we list a summary of the steps required to manage the issues.
- Identify project issues proactively
- Log issues in issue tracking system
- Track issue and keep status updated
- Assign ownership of each issue
- Resolve project issues
- Communicate issues well
Tools for Managing Issues
There are various tools which a project manager can use to manage project issues. These tools range from simple word processing documents to complex issue management tools. Here we highlight a few of those tools.
- Simple word processing software
- Any spreadsheet software
- Issue tracking systems online or local
- Project management software
- Project collaboration tools
What Issue Information is Required?
In order to properly track and handle an issue, we need to keep certain information about an issue. This information is helpful in managing the issues. Also, we come across different issues which might not be very important or urgent, so we need to prioritize the issues as well. This is what project issues management is all about.
- A unique issue ID
- Logging, updating & closing dates
- Issue priority and impact on project
- Issue title and description
- Issue status and additional notes
How to Approach Issue management?
Issues can impact a project negatively, so it’s better to track and manage all issues proactively. They should be logged with required details. Someone should be responsible to resolve them. Resolve issues at the lowest level and find the root cause of the issue.
Problems Caused by No Issue Management
If there is no proper issue management, we can face a lot of problems during a project. For example, no one is aware of the issue, and no one takes responsibility. It impacts the project progress negatively and can even fail a project.
Who is Responsible for Issue Management?
It is the responsibility of the project manager. However, the project manager can find out who should be responsible to resolve the issue and then assign the issue to that person. It is still the project manager who makes sure to follow up and gets the issue resolved.
After this blog post, you must have got good idea about project issues management. Although, it’s project manager’s job to take care of such issues, but he or she can involve all the concerned people or stakeholders where required. That’s why, in a way, project issues management is relevant to all stakeholders as well, so they support the project manager where needed.