Project Management Post-Mortem Template

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Performance Against Goals

Goal: state original goal or goals of project

  • List key metrics (items for measuring success)

Actual: summarize what really happened in relationship to goals

  • List progress against metrics

Performance Against Schedule

Plan: summarize original schedule of project

  • List key milestone

Actual: summarize what really happened in relationship to plan

  • List differences in terms of original dates (x weeks late, x months early, etc.)

Performance Against Quality

Quality goal: state original quality goal or goals for the project

  • List key metrics (items for measuring success)

Actual: summarize what really happened in relationship to quality goal

  • List progress against metric

Performance Against Budget

Budget: state original quality goal or goals for the project

  • List key cost goals, expenditure limits

Actual cost/expenditures: summarize what really happened in relationship to budget

  • List progress against goals & limits


Post-Mortem By Department

Project Planning:
How Was the Project Planned?

Who was responsible for original plans?

  • How did that work? Right set of people?

Was project well defined from beginning?

  • Was there an actual written plan?
  • How was project plan communicated?
  • How well did that work?

Project Planning:
Was the Plan the Right One?

Was the plan a good one?

  • What was good?  What was missing?

Was the plan realistic?

How did the plan evolve over time?

  • Was the change good or bad?
  • How did the changes affect the project?

Key areas for improvement:

  • Make very specific recommendations

Research & Development
How Was R&D Managed?

How was the project managed through R&D?

  • How many teams, number of people, reporting structure, etc.
  • How well did that work? Improvements?

How did the R&D teams communicate

  • What methods, timing, etc.
  • How well did that work?

Research & Development
How Effective & Efficient Was R&D?

Identifying & solving technical problems

  • Were issues identified early enough?
  • Were problems solved well?
  • What worked? Didn't work? Could be better?

Estimates & execution

  • Were estimates on track with actuals?
  • What helped people estimate well?
  • What caused people to estimate poorly?

Project Management
How Was the Project Managed?

Meetings: who/when/how often

  • How well did this work?

Communication: who/when/how often

  • How well did this work?

Changes: how tracked, communicated

  • How well did this work?

Other methods: email, schedules, databases, reports, etc.

Manufacturing

Was team properly prepared to receive product?

  • BOM & paperwork complete & accurate?
  • Materials ordered & ready?

Did product meet manufacturability goals?

Were there unexpected delays or problems?

Quality Assurance & Support

How was product quality measured?

  • Was this effective? Efficient?

How did final product compare against quality goals?

How were quality issues resolved?

Were support teams properly prepared?

Is product quality consistent with support resources?

Marketing

Did positioning match final product?

Was positioning successful? Appropriate? Effective?

Was product launch effective?

Were marketing programs effectively implemented?

Did product & launch meet marketing goals?

Sales

Was channel & sales force appropriately informed about product?

Did product and message meet customer need?

Was timing appropriate? Cost?

How do initial sales compare to goals?

How has product been received?

 

Key Lessons

What Went Right

Summarize in quick bullet points specific things that worked well

  • Use specific examples: "daily 15-minute morning status meetings worked well" instead of "team communicated well".
  • Distribute or list network location of forms, procedures, reports, etc. that were found to be particularly useful.

What Went Wrong

Summarize in quick bullet points specific things that caused problems

  • Try to isolate specific attitudes, procedures, methods, timing issues, etc. that caused problems

How did team respond to problems?

Recommendations

By department or management level, record critical recommendations for future products of this type

Distribute document or network location of more detailed summary of this presentation

Questions and Comments

Questions and comments

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