A project manger represents a client, and manages and coordinates all of the suppliers required to complete a given task. There are likely to be constraints set with the task such as a timetable and a financial budget. Then project manager will report back to the client on a regular basis.
- Project management includes skills and techniques to make a project run smoothly.
- The project manager provides a focused resource, with the skills required.
- The business owner can continue with their day to day business usual.
- A project manager will provide the best chance of delivering the benefits of the project.
- The project manager is more likely to be able to view the project more objectively than the client.
During my time with British Telecom (BT) we experienced massive technical change, when I first started everything was on paper, from using phone books in directory enquiries to customer records and accounts. Everyone of the technical changes was a massive project just by the size of the company with in excess of 200,000 employees.
The first project I experienced was in Directory Enquiry Centers, replacing phone books with microfiche and microfiche readers. Operators receiving an enquiry would have to walk over to a central library of UK phone books but so much information was stored on a piece of microfiche that all the UK phone books could be contained on each workstation therefore enabling operators to handle calls much quicker and the microfiche was updated quaterley rather than 18 months for the next publication of a phone book. So customer received more up-to-date information and quicker.
Roll out of the Directory Assistance System (DAS).
This system replaced the microfiche readers and provided our first workstations with computer terminals provided for each operator. The operator keyed in the first 4 characters of the requested name and from a central UK based computer center back would come the matches in milliseconds.
Workforce Management System
Computerising the method of allocating operators to customer demand and producing staffing rotas. Initially this was working with the American developer of the software, trialing the software and eventuality implementing it in our 30+ Operator centers. I was involved in trialing the software, providing user feedback and later running in training sessions to rollout the application.
Relocation of a City Operator Center.
This involved moving from and old fashioned operator center (insert photo) to a modern office building with Automatic Call Recording Equipment (ACRE) workstations for the 100 service and Directory Assistance System (DAS) for the Directory Enquiry service.
We were involved in the implementation of the new systems in the new building and as workstations became operational we redeployed operators to the new building across the city, trained them on the new systems and finally moved customer traffic to the new building as operators started to handle live calls. We had to do this with a minimal increase in staff and maintain quality of service standards.
Project Management Training
As technology moved forward it became possible to distribute calls to any available operator in any call center. This was a national project and I became a member of the project team responsible for call centers in South Wales and the South West of England. A requirement of the project was so ensure all members of the project team were trained in Project Management, equipping everyone with knowledge and skills necessary.