What to Expect
In a Project Kickoff Workshop, 729 Solutions will make sure your project is starting off strong with our time-tested project management processes. We’ll walk through each of the steps that we’ll be taking to get your project across the finish line and make sure you know what information, access, the documentation you’ll need to provide to our team. In addition to discussing your project, we’ll also make sure there are clear expectations around any deadlines or project timelines, and how to communicate easily with our team.
We’ve divided our Project Kickoff Workshop into three subsections: Educate, Explore, and Reveal. Here’s a brief summary, with more detailed information about each subsection below.>
Subsection 1 – Educate
First, we’ll introduce the members of the 729 Solutions team who will be working on your project. We’ll also review the scope and desired outcome of the project, as well as the anticipated timeline.
Subsection 2 – Explore
Next, we’ll talk more about the details of your specific project. We’ll walk through the steps that need to be taken to achieve success, and begin diving into the more technical aspects of your project.
Subsection 3 – Reveal
Finally, we’ll make sure everyone is on the same page regarding the desired outcome. We’ll focus on making sure everyone has the same vision for the final product or service. We’ll also talk about the iterative process that’s used during work on the project, and when the deadline is for any changes or feedback.
Our people are our most valuable resource, so we start every Project Kickoff with introductions. You may have already met your Project Manager (PM), who will lead this call. We believe we have an awesome team of designers, developers, and tech wizards, and we want you to know who they are and what their role is for your project. You may not meet every single 729 team member who will touch your project in some way, but you will get to know and understand the main players and their roles.
We also want to use this chance to get to know you and your internal team better. Again, our PM may have already met your team lead or primary stakeholder, but this is the opportunity to get everyone in the same “room” and on the same page right from the get-go. You don’t need to include every single person on the call (unless you want to, of course), but please be sure that your project lead and any key players are there.
We’ll also talk about logistics, communication, and timelines. Our team has a well-developed process for making sure projects are completed on-time and on-budget, but we can’t make that happen on our own. It’s important that everyone is in agreement about how the information will be communicated and who makes the final decision.
We’ll review any tools that we’ll be using to manage your project, which might include some (or all) of the following:
- Email: Used for basic communication and sending documents
- Slack: Used internally by 729 Solutions for almost all communications; can be used by our clients in their own private Slack channel to communicate with our team as well
- Pivotal Tracker: Used to track all of the details for your project, broken down into the individual steps and actions that will be taken on a granular level
- Monday.com: Used to track project steps across divisions of 729 Solutions
We’ll wrap up this section of our call with a final review of the overall project scope and timeline. We want everyone involved to be crystal clear on what success looks like for your project, and what the expected timeline is. While nothing is set in stone, making sure we’re on the same page at the beginning of your project gives us a powerful start that we can build on as we move through the various stages of the project.
Next we’re going to begin diving into the technical components of your project. Most projects will have already gone through the scoping process with our team, including the generation of the formal scoping document. This document will serve as our main point of information as we begin building out the infrastructure and technical aspects of your project.
The exact technical specifications are going to vary greatly from project to project. No two projects are the same, and we want to make sure that we’re using the platforms, integrations, and programming that is the right fit for you.
For our Studios projects we’ll talk about all aspects of the design process, which might include the following:
- User Personas
- User Journeys
- User Testing
- Design requirements
- Brand identity
For more technical projects we’ll also take a dive into the specifics of what we might use. Some of the technology that we might discuss for your project includes the following:
- System or cloud architecture
- Platforms and hosting
- System integrations
- Code repositories
- Project Wiki
- OnePass Vault
- Local environments
- Monitoring with New Relic
We’ll wrap up this Project Kickoff Workshop by envisioning what the end product is going to look like and try to make sure everyone is on the same page for the overall vision and mission of the work that will be performed.
For many projects, our team will use our iterative agile process to make constant improvements to various aspects of the project. For example, creating a brand identity might involve several iterations where our team takes the information gathered from you to create some initial brand documents. Those will then be presented to you for review and comment, and our team will make improvements based on your feedback. It will also be important to identify the end date for any iterations so that the project is finished within the timeline that was projected.
If a project is going to run long for any reason, your project manager will communicate that to you, explaining what caused the delay and what the options are to finish things up quickly and effectively. Don’t forget that you and your team play a very important role in this iterative process; if we don’t get timely feedback from you, our team can’t move forward.
Prepare for your Kickoff Workshop
To help your Project Kickoff Workshop run smoothly there are several things we’ll ask you to do ahead of time. Don’t worry, we’ll also be doing our homework so that we’re ready to roll when you are. Adequately preparing for this workshop means that we can use our time together to make sure we’re all on the same page and understand the process that 729 Solutions uses to ensure your project’s success.
Your 729 Project Manager will let you know about any specific items you should prepare ahead of time, including any worksheets that will gather detailed information into a single document.
Some information that you might need to prepare includes:
- Any existing documentation for this project
- Brand identity information for the project or your company
- List of platforms and services currently using
- Any modifications that you’ve already made to a product that you’re using
- Integrations that are already in place or that you want to add
- List of stakeholders, project leads and team members
Now that you understand how 729 Solutions is going to get your new project rocking and rolling, it’s time to reach out to one of our team members and get the process started. We’ll begin with a brief conversation about your project, and then direct you through our scoping process. Once your contract is signed and scheduled we’ll get the Project Kickoff Workshop onto the calendar so we can get things moving! We may also recommend other workshops, such as a Business Requirement Workshop, in addition to the Project Kickoff Workshop so that we make sure we’re getting all of the information and documentation we need to make it happen for you.