Creating an IT Project Plan

If you’re currently in the process of planning the steps to get your important IT project off the ground, you’re likely drowning in IT details. Maybe you took a few minutes to look for project planning help on Google? If so, you’re probably drowning in jargon now too. (Ugh!)

It’s time for you to pull off your IT project plans swimmingly (with no drowning and no jargon!), and the friendly IT experts at Interplay are here to help you keep your head above water. 

As we mentioned in the last article on IT strategy, speed is one of the most critical components to a successful IT implementation, so let’s get right to it. Get your project moving along with these 5 tips to creating a successful IT project plan. 

5 Tips for Creating Your Successful IT Project Plan

Follow these IT project planning steps in order for the best results. 

Set up a plan manager 

Your plan manager doesn’t need to know everything about tech or have a degree in IT project planning and management, but they do need to have the time and organization skills to keep everyone accountable and on track. 

This person will keep an eye on the big picture view, so you don’t get slowed down by distractions that are “nice to have” instead of focusing on what you actually need. This person should be comfortable adapting your IT integration project plan when everything goes sideways (as it surely will, at least once). 

You’ve already got someone in mind for this task, don’t you? 

Keep everything in order 

IT project planning relies heavily on ensuring that progress is made one step at a time. That means you need to know which steps belong where on your timeline. To get you started, here’s a general plan outline that can help you keep everything in order: 

  • Step 1: Architecture design
  • Step 2: Implementation and configuration
  • Step 3: Staff training
  • Step 4: Data migration, followed by extensive testing
  • Step 5: Cutover  

This isn’t so hard! You’re already making progress! ☺ 

Define your approach 

Now that you know which steps come when, it’s a good idea to plan how you’ll achieve those steps. Good news: you can save time and headaches when you choose the right methodology for your IT project planning team. 

Common approaches include:

  • Waterfall, in which you complete all the stages in order, and you don’t start a new stage until the previous is totally completed
  • Iterative, in which you repeat phases as often as you need to, so you can fine tune them, fixing errors and addressing challenges as they arise
  • Agile, which is also an iterative approach, but one that is timebound because you organize all work in “sprints” 

There are no “right” or “wrong” methodologies, just make sure you choose the best one for your needs – and stick to it! 

Remember all the details

IT project planning involves a lot of details. In the heat of the moment, it’s really easy to forget some of them. Your best bet is to write down every single detail you can think of for each stage and keep your list of details safe and accessible. 

To get you thinking, here’s a list of commonly forgotten details:

  • Software integration
  • Firmware updates
  • Database storage and management tasks
  • Identifying potential cybersecurity risks
  • Building or extending infrastructure and networks

It’s worth it to think hard about what you might want on this list. After all, it’ll save you a lot of time if you “measure twice, cut once.”

Set aside extra time for overcoming challenges 

Earlier, we mentioned that everything in your nicely planned IT project transition plan is guaranteed to go sideways at least once. That’s because you are guaranteed to come up against unexpected obstacles and surprising challenges. 

Just take our word for it. You’ll be much happier and calmer if you plan in ample extra time to handle things like:  

  • Interdependencies
  • Rapid upgrades
  • Version changes
  • Clearing out old IT stuff
  • Empowering your staff and customers with critical knowledge

You can never have too much flex time. Trust us on this. 

IT Project Planning Is Complex – It’s Okay to Reach Out for Help

Hopefully, this article helped you rise above all the jargon and details you were drowning in, so you feel you can swim confidently forward to your perfect business IT future. But… maybe you still have some questions about how to launch your IT project planning process. 

In fact, let’s rephrase that. Probably you still have some questions – and you deserve answers that fit your situation precisely. That’s better than trying to piece together your business-critical plan based solely on one-size-fits-all advice. 

Your best bet is to ask the friendliest, most knowledgeable IT expert team in Seattle: Interplay. 

Since 2001, Interplay has helped Seattle business leaders craft and complete effective IT strategies that keep their technology safely up to date and their operations productive, with a focus on cybersecurity and usability. 

Here at Interplay, we believe the point of technology is to connect people, so we make sure that everything we recommend and implement fits your needs perfectly, with no unnecessary services or hidden fees. You can trust us for round-the-clock, world-class support 24/7, at a flat rate

We’re your friendly helping hand, always happy to roll up our sleeves and get hands-on to keep your business tech running smoothly. 

Learn more about Interplay’s IT strategy consulting services. 


Photo by Startup Stock Photos from Pexels