RefineM Blog

Turning Project Management Into a Competitive Advantage

Image of two cars of the same model, one worn-out, and the other in pristine condition.
June 3, 2016

According to PMI’s 2016 Pulse of the Profession report, organizations lose $122 million on average for every $1 billion spent on projects, an increase from the last measure in 2014.

Although the waste could be worse, organizations should examine ways to further reduce that waste. PMI’s (2014) recommendations for minimizing these losses include greater coupling of projects with organizational strategy and a greater organizational agility that includes more emphasis on customers and processes. In this blog post, we will provide commentary on both the 2014 and 2016 reports and offer additional solutions from the perspective of our project management experience.

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Agile Vs. Waterfall

Graphic of Agile vs. Waterfall
May 26, 2016

How do Agile methods differ from waterfall methods? In this blog post, we will answer that question and we will present the key differences between Agile and waterfall. As the traditional method used to deliver projects, waterfall tends to be the more common and generic way of managing projects. Agile is typically used with software projects, but can also apply to other projects. Depending on the type of project, Agile may or may not be a good fit for non-software projects. With other types of projects, you might even be able to integrate Agile and waterfall methodologies together to create a dynamic way of approaching a specific project.

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Changing Careers: Business Analyst to Project Manager

Photo of a man in a suit preparing for a career move.
May 16, 2016
The business analyst (BA) and the project manager (PM) each fill critical roles on projects. Business analysts lead requirements gathering, solutions generation, and communication with business users, while project managers lead the project from initiation and planning to executing, monitoring and controlling, and closing. While the roles and responsibilities of each title may vary between companies, there is often overlap between the business analyst and project manager roles. With these factors at play, how can a business analyst transition effectively to a project manager role?Continue reading

Q&A with NK: Beginnings in Agile

Photo of NK Shrivastava, CEO of RefineM.
May 13, 2016

This is the second post in a Q&A series with RefineM’s CEO and founder, NK Shrivastava. In this post, we’ve asked NK to share his experiences with Agile, and why he believes Agile is an important aspect of project management. If you’re interested in reading the first interview in this series, take a look at Q&A with NK: Beginnings in Project Management. We hope that you will be able to learn more about NK and how his career has helped shape him into an excellent Agile Coach and the CEO of his own company.

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How You Can Do More With Less

Image of two project team members discussing project management processes.
May 3, 2016

According to a 2014 survey conducted by RefineM’s CEO, NK Shrivastava, almost 75% of surveyed project managers say their job has grown more difficult. This survey was conducted almost two years ago, and what we hear in our day-to-day operation is that these issues are still applicable for the year 2016. If this is the case, what is a project manager to do? Here at RefineM, we’ve come up with an immediately applicable strategy for you to do more with less and deliver successful projects.

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I Failed my Project Management Professional (PMP)® Exam. Now What?

Frustrated person at a desk
April 17, 2016

The Project Management Professional (PMP)® exam is a notoriously difficult test on which even experienced project managers commonly struggle. The exact first-time pass rate is not known, but a range of estimates from different sources place it between 20 and 70 percent. Bottom line, if you were not able to pass the PMP exam on your first attempt, you are not alone. You are probably frustrated and are not sure what to do next. Follow these tips to overcome your frustration and pass the exam for which you have studied so hard.

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5 Warning Signs That Your Stakeholders Aren’t Engaged With Your Project

Two colleagues reviewing a document.
April 11, 2016

Engaged stakeholders are powerful allies on your project, offering support and insights to help you and your team succeed. Simply listing stakeholders in a stakeholder register is not enough to drive stakeholder engagement. Stakeholders who are not engaged cannot fully support your project and may become barriers to success.

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Roadmap to Implement Agile

Header for Roadmap to Implement Agile infographic.
April 4, 2016

Are you ready to have a team that is actively involved, quick to make decisions and quick to embrace change? If so, you’re ready to implement Agile. With Agile, you’ll speed up delivery, have higher customer satisfaction, greater project success, and will be better equipped to reduce risk. Follow us on the road to implement Agile.

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10 Factors to Consider When Selecting a Project Management Professional (PMP)® Exam Prep Course

Image of PMP exam preparation materials.
March 24, 2016

Are you ready to take your Project Management Professional (PMP)® certification exam? Are you sure? The PMP exam is a difficult test, and even highly skilled and experienced project managers can struggle with it. A prep course or boot camp can give you the edge you need, but finding the best course for you can be a project in itself. How can you ensure you’re selecting the best company, course, and instructor to get the best value for your money? In this post, we present ten factors you should consider before selecting a vendor for your PMP Exam prep training.

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Agile Contracts

Photo of an agilist filling out an agile contract.
March 13, 2016

An agile project is likely to look drastically different as compared to a waterfall project. As a result, the contract for an agile project needs to be constructed with mutual understanding of these differences between customers and organizations practicing agile. Acknowledging the unique project environment in the agile contract will allow both sides to better support their agile projects. In this post, we describe key features agile contracts need to have and describe a few examples of contracts.

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