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Monday, 13 May 2013

Software Architect roles and responsibilities


Most of the organizations expect the technical role needs to play by project manager. The project manger has to be good in technical concepts to design the application and helping the team on problem solving.
Based on my experience, in this article I have presented the important points to be focused during designing the application by project manager who is expected to play a role of an architect:

1) Understanding end to end development life cycle:
Refer the below end to end development life cycle, the architecture stared during the requirement and matured during development.

During the requirement gathering phase the architect need to concentrate on feasibility of implementing the functional and non functional requirement.  Need to on board few resources in to project to perform the POC for evaluating the initial design.
Create the design of the application during elaboration phase; the main point here is to create right size architecture base on project cost, schedule and scope.
2) Understand what architect does:
The architect role is limited and need to play a role within the provided constraints. The constraints are Available Software, Hardware, Infrastructure and organization process.
3) Architects manage risks and changes:
The architect needs to develop the design that has layers of components and loosely coupled (for example use the SOA architecture). Identify the risks expected in the project and provide the flexibility to change the design during the development phase.
The changes might be coming from business that requires changes in the architecture; the architecture should be flexible to accommodate the changes.
4) Architects communicate with stakeholders
Architect needs to communicate with stakeholders on the approach, assumptions made and support from client and organization for getting the resource and infrastructure.
Architect prepares the Software architecture document, share with the stakeholders and get the sign off from client.
5) Architects build the reusable components:
The reusability provides fewer problems, greater productivity and easier maintenance.  Architect needs to build to reusable components by refine existing components that have been used in other systems.
 6) Architects influence the requirement:
Architects working in constrains like functional and non functional requirements, Resource, Schedule, Cost and Real time qualities. He needs to influence to requirement to get Maintainability, Scalability of the application in the real environment.
7) Derive the solution from business needs:
The architecture needs to support the boundary between the system and the system outside which interacts such as end user and external system. The system need to support business workflows, rules and satisfy the functional requirements.
8) Architect refines the solution based on the Technology:
The architect need to refine the solution based on the technology, for example if you are working for automobile or finance organization and they have working on Oracle SOA suit for enterprise solutions, need to make the solution based on the technology available in the client place. Need to develop the solution using web services to make smart integration with other systems.
The conclusion is design the simple architecture which has multiple layers instead of complex architecture. The architecture needs be flexible to accommodate the changes and supports painless to integrate with external systems.

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    1. Tag: PM236A53. Let me share all of you about #5 Tips for Project Management Success,, I hope you enjoy it

      1. Plan your day using time management techniques

      As a project manager, time management skills are essential because you are dealing with a wide range of tasks that demand a quick turnaround time. Planning your day will go a long way in keeping you organized and increasing your productivity. Assist your task planning by using project management software which helps you track the work of you and your team.

      If you are not very tech savvy, a simple to-do list can also be a great organizational tool. Prioritize your most important tasks by putting them at the top of the list and less important ones at the bottom. Having a visual plan of your daily tasks helps to keep you on track and aware of time.

      Related post: Free ebook 104 secrets to become a great project manager

      2. Include stakeholders in important project conversations

      While you will have plenty of responsibilities regarding the project, don’t neglect your clients.

      Good communication is essential is keeping both parties informed of project progression, curtailing scope creep, and apprised of changing requirements. Some clients may have different expectations when it comes to communication, so make sure to establish the frequency and type of communication (like emails, phone calls, and face-to-face conversations) at the beginning of your project.

      Establishing communication expectations early helps alleviate stakeholder uncertainty about communication frequency and delivery.

      3. Regularly communicate with your team

      Daily team communication helps keep misunderstandings and unclear requirements under control. Keeping your team informed in every step of the project is essential to project management success.

      For example, a study published by Procedia Technology found that good communication skills were the cornerstone of project management. The study examined over 300 “construction project managers, architects, construction managers, engineers and quantity surveyors” and their successes and failures on various construction projects.

      4. Anticipate project setbacks

      Even the best-laid plans often go awry.

      Remember that even with a high amount of planning and attention to detail, your project may still encounter some challenges. Pay attention to complaints from stakeholders or colleagues, and other warning signs, like a missed deadline or cost overrun, that there may be a problem.

      Preventing a crisis will keep your project running smoothly, save you a lot of time, and keep you, your team, and your stakeholders confident in progressing with the project.

      Unfortunately not every complication can be avoided. Crisis management skills are essential for dealing with the unexpected. Project managers need to be flexible and pragmatic. Improvise and make sharp decisions when needed.

      Related post: 92 free project management templates

      5. Stay focused on the details

      A common problem project managers encounter is having the project aims not aligned with the organization’s objectives. A great project manager will strategize a plan for the project to lead back to the overall success of the business.

      Know your project’s scope by heart and avoid wandering outside of the project’s requirements. It’s too easy to get lost in minor details and forget what your focus is, so a well-planned project scope is essential for success.

      And final, you should use KPI to measure effectiveness of the project, here are full list: 76 project management KPIs

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