RefineM Blog

Agile Practices for Waterfall Teams Part 1: Maintaining a Backlog

Person writing in a notebook next to a laptop computer
March 24, 2017

On a waterfall project, the bulk of the value is delivered at the end of the project. On an agile project, value is delivered incrementally through iterative cycles with the highest-value items prioritized, increasing customer satisfaction. Backlogs serve as the mechanism for clarifying priority on projects carried out by agile teams, allowing them to put the customer’s highest priorities first. How can waterfall teams achieve a similar effect?

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Agile Practices for Waterfall Teams

February 21, 2017

Many organizations with traditional, or waterfall, teams struggle to transform to Agile. The struggle could happen for many reasons:

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Top 5 Books for Beginning Project Managers

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November 29, 2016

Project managers just starting out may wonder how they can continue to build their knowledge and skillsets. Based on our project management reading, we have identified five books to help beginning project managers, as well as those with some degree of experience, establish continuous learning and dedicate themselves to further success.

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Understanding and Overcoming IT Project Risks [Infographic]

October 12, 2016

Many high-profile IT projects face their own risks and challenges from conception to the final stages. Perhaps the addition of technology into the mix makes these projects particularly challenging, but if project managers and teams are not careful, all of their hard work could result in a failed project and disappointment from all involved. When considering management of IT projects, two questions must be considered: How and why do IT projects fail, and what can you do to prevent this failure? In this blog post and infographic, we explore the top four types of IT project-related risk factors to look out for and provide strategies to put in place that will help your teams overcome threats to your IT projects.Continue reading

Five Ways to Foster Project Management Innovation

Team meeting to try innovative ideas
September 16, 2016

Project teams have a lot to deal with on projects. They will have to navigate multiple problems, such as risks becoming issues, costs exceeding budget, and schedules slipping, on any given project. The top notch project managers and teams are skilled and experienced at coming up with innovative solutions to these problems. How can any project manager or team acquire this skill? In this post, we describe five ways to improve creativity on project teams to foster project management innovation. These steps range from building the foundation through organizational structure and culture to trying out agile practices.

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4 Project Management Software Tools to Consider for Your Teams

Team members at a meeting with their computers
July 18, 2016

Project management processes can be implemented with only simple tools that project managers and team members are likely to have, such as templates for Microsoft Office programs or Google Docs. For some project managers and teams who have grown out of Microsoft Office, a software tool for the sake of automating part of the workflow, such as JetPack Workflow, may be useful. Many tools are available on the market for teams or companies of various sizes, and some are also cloud-based for ease of access by everyone on the team.

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5 Things Needed to Be Agile Ready

Hands at a laptop keyboard with notepad nearby
July 11, 2016

Is your organization thinking about implementing Agile? Agile can provide numerous benefits to any organization, but the implementation process is not always smooth. This post is for change leaders or executives who are thinking about implementing Agile in their organization, but are not sure if the organization is ready yet. Before investing in training or resources, make sure these five things are in place; otherwise, it may not be worth investing resources in training teams yet.

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5 W’s of the Project Management Professional (PMP)® Exam [Infographic]

5 W's of the PMP Exam Featured Image
July 7, 2016

Ever wondered what exactly the Project Management Professional (PMP)® is and why everyone is talking about it? In this blog post, we cover the 5 W’s of the PMP exam: who, what, when, where, and why.

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5 Habits of Highly Effective Project Managers

Photo of project managers discussing at a table.
June 20, 2016

Project managers need to develop strong habits to be highly effective. Based on Stephen Covey’s landmark book, The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People, we recommend five habits for project managers to develop in order to become, and remain, highly effective.

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5 Key Initiatives to Make Your PMO Shine

Business people at a meeting.
June 10, 2016

One of the key measures of a project management office (PMO) should be whether project delivery capability improves as a result of its existence. The PMO contributes to successful project delivery by providing standards for project management, empowering the organization’s project managers, and increasing the visibility of project management. To accomplish these key goals and remain relevant, PMOs need to be dynamic and proactive rather than static and reactive.

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PMI, PMP, CAPM, PMI-ACP, PMI-RMP, and PMBOK are all registered marks of the Project Management Institute, Inc.