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Project Lesson Learnt

Prior to initiating a new project it can be a valuable exercise to reflect on previous project experiences to identify any possible lessons learnt that could be applied to your project. Below are high level themes that have been observed through conducting lesson learnt, review and apply to your project as appropriate.





The right mix of skills and experience at the governance level is vital to ensure accountability and project oversight

Progress reports to the governance body should cover all key aspects of the project / programme to enable effective decision making. Ensure progress against a plan is clear


Programme and Project Planning


Establish formal stage boundaries (milestones) for key decision points within the project / programme where ongoing viability assessed before moving into subsequent stages. There should be opportunity to stop the project should it become evident that the project no longer viable, particularly with respect to commercial agreements. 



Sourcing Strategy

Ensure external vendors are clear on the scope and how their deliverables will contribute towards the outcomes desired.

Avoid entering into contracts with significant 'agree to agree' provisions, particularly those related to the definition of requirements.

Ensure vendors are overseen closely and if performance issues are being experienced address these early. 



Stakeholder Engagement 


Establish a stakeholder engagement group between key stakeholders to ensure their needs are understood and use this as a forum for communication.



Management of Change 


Involve relevant users of the service or system in the development of requirements, testing and implementation, in a meaningful way. 



Risks & Issues


 Involve relevant users of the service or system in the development of requirements, testing and implementation, in a meaningful way.




Assignment of experienced and skilled project / programme manager.

If resource capability is not working out, manage this closely to replace with more appropriate resources.

Ensure resource requirements are identified at the outset and that demand, supply and management of resource risks captured



Business Case 


Scope is clearly defined, including measurable benefits

‘To be’ business process and technology understood and risks identified



 Programme and Project Management


The adoption of a formal project / programme methodology is an important starting point. It needs to  However, project / programme management discipline needs to be applied firmly and consistently to maintain control.




Transition into Service / Testing


Clear evidence of testing and readiness to transition into service need to be presented to the project governance body. Issues to be flagged during project.

As part of your project closure exercise you should capture the lessons learnt. This can be as simple as maintaining a list capturing the what, why and how.

  • What was the positive or negative outcome
  • Why is it considered a lesson learnt, what was the cause, effect and impact
  • How was the lesson learnt addressed and how should future projects apply the learning

For larger workshops the PMO can facilitate the running of a lesson learnt workshop. Please contact us for further details.