Managing a project is not easy, with people, finances, time, equipment and materials to be managed on an ongoing basis to ensure project success. However, if you keep an eye on the following five important project areas, you will very much be on top of everything on your project.

1. Finances and time
You must on a weekly basis review your project to see if it is still on track. You must identify all tasks that are slipping or running late and see if they would be delaying the overall project completion date. In order to re-assign time to more critical tasks, see if there are any non-critical tasks that can be delayed to later or even after project completion. Another method of time saving is to see if you cannot complete any tasks quicker and earlier.

2. Resource allocation
You must keep a close eye on the percentage of time each of your team members are allocated to a task. If certain team members are over allocated and others are under allocated, you may need to look at reworking your schedule and working more efficiently. You may need to balance everyone’s workload better so that everyone is allocated 80 to 100 percent.

3. Progress and efficiency of the team
Not only must you continuously track the progress of every team member, but also the efficiency of every team member. This means that apart from the percentage progress everyone makes on his or her tasks, you must also check how many tasks are completed on time. Time sheets are very good tools in monitoring progress and efficiency of team members.

4. Risks, issues and changes
All risks, issues and changes must be managed on an ongoing basis using appropriate management processes and forms and logs to record all these items. A great tip is to try and resolve any issues or risks as soon as they are identified, in order to minimize the impact they may have on your project. Changes must be discussed and prioritized with the relevant stakeholders on an ongoing basis and their impact on the project must be track and monitored.

5. Project health checks
Tracking projects at a low level is part of ongoing project management, but you must also be able to every now and then during the project’s existence sit back and review the project from a higher level to gain a view of the project’s overall health and status. By taking a weekly summarized view of the project, you will be able to more effectively manage the project and lead the team.

Keeping these five areas constantly in mind during the entire project will ensure that you would be able to identify problems well in advance and then be able to act on these appropriately to ensure project success.

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