March 7, 2010
The internet places vast amounts of information at our fingertips. More and more customers view the website first before they visit a store or make contact with the company. A company’s web page is becoming the face of the corporation in today’s marketplace. The design of that web page can either entice or detract a potential customer from seeking assistance. Web page design companies use project managers to supervise web page construction for corporate and government clients. The success or failure of these pages depends on the use of sound project planning and metrics. Practical use of these metrics will win clients. The improper use of planning and metrics will drive business away. Having a project manager that can use the metrics to their advantage will ensure the web design company can stay profitable.
Ionata Web Solutions is a provider of internet based applications and data base driven web sites. The company has offices located in Tasmania and San Diego. The company was formerly known as Nextleft before 2008. Nextleft experienced a great deal of success developing web applications for a wide range of government and corporate clients. Their web design and software solutions facilitate content creation, content control, editing, and essential web maintenance functions. Josh Gaffney has been a project manager for Ionata since 2002. His duties include overseeing the design process of the web sites created for clients and managing a team of 5-10. He uses the information that he and the sales team gather when they are meeting with perspective clients to design web pages that are suitable to the company’s needs. These web pages can be as small as a page to as large as an entire company’s site, including their sales and support applications. Josh has witnessed and helped fuel the growth of the internet into the enormous influence in everyday life that it is today. In the early stages of web design the pages were sometimes crude and difficult to navigate. With a team of talented and artistic programmers and designers, he has developed stylized pages that consumers find appealing. As technology gets better and computers become more advanced, the bar on web page design and function keeps rising. Josh has challenged himself and his team to keep above the bar and produce quality products at competitive prices for the customers. I have chosen to interview Josh because I have always been interested in the field that he is currently working in. My goal is to use my project management skills in a technology field as well. I performed this interview with several goals in mind. I wanted Josh to divulge as many facts and figures as he could. Each question was targeted to retrieve the most information possible. During the interview Josh was able to explain the details of his work and how a project starts, progresses, and ends. To start, I asked Josh what he would consider to be three critically important things you must do well as a project manager in order for the project to succeed. He answered that having great communication skills, understanding the needs of team members, and being able to estimate and give information when needed are critical to his position. Communicating with team members is very important because they need to be informed of their job tasks. Each team member is an integral part of the project plan. If one member is uninformed it could delay every other part of the project. Keeping your teams needs met requires a manager that is on task and able to listen to the team members requests. Another critical part of the job is being able to estimate information and educate sponsors and team members on what improvements will come from the project. Using a manager’s estimate of impact allows Josh to estimate the percentage of improvement that...