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software project management

Roles & importance of project managers in software development:
Every project or teamwork needs someone responsible to manage and coordinate with the other
members to achieve the end goal of the project they have been working for. Be it a school project
or a project that holds tremendous amounts of infrastructure, all they need is proper management.
But before knowing about project managers we should first address what a project is. Now a
project can be anything, it can be a goal, development, or research, can be an invention, can be a
simple assignment. Like the project varies according to scale, and so does the project managers
and their role varies. And since the project cannot get done by itself, it needs a person who is
assigned to get it done. And here comes, the project managers. A project manager can simply be
defined as someone who is responsible for the overall project and is also leading it.
Now a software project manager is someone who is responsible for the development of software.
Or in simple definition, a software project manager is a person who is assigned to manage and
make sure that the software project is completed properly with the criteria given. Much like any
other project managers in general, a software project manager is responsible for planning and
managing the implementation of a project to successfully achieve the project objectives and
deliverables. But managing and keeping everything in a project is not as easy as it seems,
especially when it has technical terms. So, they communicate and co-ordinate things between the
developers and stakeholders. Software project managers simply simplify things between the
people associated with the project.
Software project managers are responsible for the activity planning and sequencing of the project
work. They plan the way how the project will be led and will also be forwarded along with the
members. They also develop the schedules and timetables that are associated with the project
itself. They estimate the cost with the provided resources and find the tentative or approximate
expenditure and fund and resource requirement. They also document everything that is involved
in the software project.
Software project managers plan and define the scope of the project so that they can be clear on
the performance of their final product. They not only plan the scope; they also plan the resource
that they will be using in the project development process. They also estimate the time that the
project will take to get ready. They even develop the budget by estimating the expenditure and
funds that will be taken and given during the project development period. Apart from that
software project managers provide the continuity that is required to see the development of the
software from the beginning to the end. Software project managers are those who have both
technical and managerial skills and knowledge. So that thing helps them to analyze how the
software is being made and how the development team is performing. The major factor that
impacts the role and responsibility of a software project manager is the type of project they are
working for and also the client’s requirement and the expectation from the project.
They first understand the need for the project. Since they are the ones with leadership skills, they
will guide their team and clarify the need and the major objective of the project they have been
working for. It is an essential part because the client’s satisfaction from the project is determined
by the level of understanding the team has with the project’s need. The other role is to create a
plan where the project is broken down into several aspects. Now after the need and requirement
of a client has been addressed, they are classified into the technical requirement that a software
developer understands in his way. The project is broken down into technical elements and the
team begins to get the work done. This includes creating timetables, giving the task to specific
members, and checking the project at every checkpoint. The overall structure to begin work then
begins with this process.
They now serve as an intermediary between the developers and clients and other stakeholders.
Since they have to be consistent throughout the project, they answer the queries and clear the
communication barriers between two people from a different or similar background who are the
direct or indirect part of the software project. They provide project status report to the
stakeholders and communicate with both sides i.e., client’s and developer if the project has any
amendments to make. Software project managers are also responsible to make sure the result or
the final product matches the need and expectations of the client. So, to do that they run different
sets of tests and cross-checks to detect the bugs and errors. They inspect everything thoroughly
for the best deliverable quality. So, to gather the response and feedback, they provide the beta
version of the software to interested parties.
The other important role of a software project manager is resource allocation. The main objective
as well as the main motive of the project management team is to develop and deliver the product
with the least expenditure, as faster as possible but as better as possible also. So, to see things
happen in that way, the software project managers are responsible for the management of the
resource that will be needed during the development process.
The other role and responsibility of a software project manager are to follow up and check how
the final product is performing. Even though if the development process has ended and the final
product is delivered to the client, software project managers will have to follow up and see if the
final product is going on smoothly. To do that, they document and wrap the project by keeping
the user manuals along with the final product. In some cases, they also provide training. And
finally, they are responsible to answer any question that is related to the software project.
Even though it may seem easy, it is way more complicated. An individual needs to have lots of
experience and versatile skills to cope with any uncertain and unwanted changes and challenges
that may occur during the development process of particular software.