Sep 9th, 2022

Top 10 Project Management Methodologies


Agilemania, a small group of passionate Lean-Agile-DevOps consultants and trainers, is the most tru... Read more

Project management is a set of principles, tools, and techniques to plan, execute and manage projects. It helps project managers and all the leaders to manage work while supporting team collaboration. There are a variety of project management methodologies. And all of them have their own advantages and disadvantages. In order to decide which project management methodology works best for you, you'll have to learn about those methodologies and choose the best that works in your context.

In this post, we'll review some of the most popular project management methodologies which are used in software development, R&D, and product development.

1. Agile Project Management

In agile project management, teams self-organize in a collaborative manner. With agile methodologies, project planning and work management are adaptive, evolutionary in nature, seeking early delivery, and always open to change in terms of the requirement and the process. Unlike waterfall project management, it is fast and flexible.

Agile project management offers project teams the opportunity to collaborate in a dynamic environment and that's why it is very popular in the software development industry. There are a lot of benefits of the agile project management. Moreover, it is not only limited to the software industry but also to the non-tech industry as well.  It is an approach with which any organization can have a more responsive and fast-paced production schedule.

A blog to be linked Top Agile Interview Questions and Answers (2023)

2. Scrum Framework

Scrum, based on empiricism, is a framework that helps the team to work together to solve complex problems. Scrum framework is applied where there are fewer people, not more than 10, and often bounded to 2 to 4 weeks cycles. They collaborate every day with short meetings called daily scrum meetings.

Scrum methodology has also been used mostly in software development, but it can be used in any non-software development industry for any project that requires flexibility, such as retail logistics and event planning.

3. Waterfall methodology

It is one of the traditional approaches and the most straightforward methods on the list. The name of this methodology is apt, as it's a process in which the phases of a project flow downward. This model requires that you move from one project phase to another only once that phase has been successfully completed.

The waterfall approach is good for manufacturing and construction projects, which are highly structured, where the requirements are clear upfront and many changes are not expected once the project is in progress. With a Gantt chart, you can plan your project down to the minute.

Also read: Waterfall vs agile or knowledge vs values - Agilemania

4. The project management body of knowledge(PMBOK)

PMBOK is an acronym for the Project management body of Knowledge. It is a guide published by PMI, that defines guidelines, outlines the best practices, and defines the terminologies that are accepted norms in the industry. PMBOK can be useful for any project, small or large.

The book outlines each stage of a project and how it should progress through the process. PMBOK helps keep everyone on the same page and provides a clear definition of how a project is managed. The Project Management Institute grants the PMP certification, which is the gold standard among project managers and is recognized around the world. PMBOK is a great traditional framework to run a project.

5. Critical Path Method(CPM)

In this method, one has to create a project model that has included all the activities listed in a work breakdown structure, and the duration of those tasks, To keep track of your progress, you can put tasks in a list and use milestones to indicate larger phases of the project or points at which your project deliverables are due. By knowing the sequence of tasks required to finish the project, you can identify the longest sequence of tasks and work out the critical path.

You must keep an eye on these tasks because if one is delayed, the whole project will be delayed.

People who work with small or mid-sized projects do better with CPM. The larger the project, the more difficult it can be to take all the data you need to diagram and make sense of it without project management software.

6. Critical chain project management

CPM majorly focuses on resources that you’ll be using to complete the project, such as teams, equipment, office space, etc. It is a less technical method of project management that does create much focus on task order and schedule but it focuses on balancing resources and keeping them flexible. This method can be used by companies of all sizes, and for projects that include industries such as construction, software development, and tech research and development.

7. Kanban Technology

The Kanban methodology is a visual approach to project management, which helps managers manage workflow by placing tasks on a board where workflow and progress are clear to everyone. It also helps reduce inefficiencies, making it a great tool for many purposes such as lean manufacturing or agile projects. Kanban breaks down into five components: visual signals, columns, work-in-progress limits, a commitment point, and a delivery point.

a.) Visual Signals - Kanban cards are visual representations of tasks. They contain details such as deadlines, assignees, descriptions, and so on.

b.) Kanban Columns - These represent the different stages of the workflow, from “to-do list” to “WIP(Work in Progress)” to “closure of the task”.

c.) Work in Progress(WIP) limit -  It defines the limitation of cards, one card should be placed at one time. No column should have more than three cards. It is to ensure that the workflow should have to clog with too much work in progress. The WIP limits to ensure that the team can focus on the tasks that are underway, helping to clear congestion in the workflow.

d.) Kanban Swimlanes - These are the types of rows used to create tasks on Kanban boards. It is used to create to produce more productivity

  1. Create tasks in the order of priority
  2. Balancing team allocation optimally
  3. Handling tasks based on user stories and phases
In our time, the dawn of visual planning boards in software like Trello means there are now new ways to use Kanban tools and Kanban methods. Agile teams use these tools for storyboarding user stories, as well as for backlog planning in software development. One can use Kanban as a pro.

Another process developed initially for manufacturing and software teams, the Kanban method, has since expanded and been used in human resources, marketing, organizational strategy, executive process, and accounts receivable and payable. Kanban boards can be used by almost anyone to plan projects. They add cards representing phases of a project (like "In Progress"), deadlines for tasks (like "Due Date"), people involved with the project (like "Stakeholders"), and other details. The software makes it possible to use Kanban boards anywhere.

8. Extreme Programming (XP)

Extreme programming is a software development methodology that is part of a family of methodologies collectively known as agile methodologies. Extreme programming is built upon values, principles, and practices, and its goal is to allow small to mid-sized teams to produce high-quality software and adapt to evolving and changing requirements.

When we compare XP with any other methodology, XP is the only methodology that focuses on the technical aspects of software development. Extreme programming is a programming methodology that requires engineers to work in a highly disciplined manner since this allows teams to deliver high-quality code at a sustainable pace. Let's Discuss the values of Extreme programming

  • Communication - It is one of the primitive values in an organization, Communication is a key part of any organization. Businesses can't function without it. In fact, it's the backbone of most organizations.
  • Simplicity - As developers strive to write simple code, they are able to share their knowledge more readily and thus save time and effort.
  • Feedback - People in a team deliver software frequently, get feedback about it, and improve a product according to the latest requirements.
  • Respect - Every person assigned to a project shares in the success of the effort.
  • Courage - Programmers objectively evaluate their own results without making excuses and are always ready to respond to changes.
The values of a company reflect the mindset of motivated team players who do their best in order to achieve common goals. These values are expressed in more concrete ways through the principles of XP. The four basic activities of Extreme Programming need to be structured in light of the principles. To accomplish this, Extreme Programming practices are defined.

The following practices are at the core of Extreme Programming. They were originally 12, but over time they have been refined and whittled down. This is the most current list. Kent Beck, the author of Extreme Programming Explained, defines twelve Extreme Programming practices as follows:

  • The Planning Game
  • Short Releases
  • Metaphor
  • Simple Design
  • Testing
  • Refactoring
  • Pair Programming
  • Collective Ownership
  • Continuous Integration
  • 40 hour Week
  • On-site Customer
  • Coding Standards

9. Lean Product Development

It is the way to cut waste to increase value in projects and the manufacturing process. So Lean focuses on eliminating waste in the processes. It does this by optimizing separate technologies, assets, and verticals. Lean product development was born from Toyota. The Toyota Production System was founded on the idea that car buyers have varying tastes, so manufacturers should not build too many cars at one time. Lean manufacturing first became popular in the 1960s, when other car companies couldn't keep up with new demand for their products.

Cars were no longer enough for American consumers; they wanted more than just black cars. Manufacturers responded by creating new models with different colors and shapes. The change in desire from cars to more variety meant that manufacturers had to start using different materials, production lines, and skilled labor. Toyota created a system that minimizes waste while maximizing value for the customer. Since then, Toyota's values have been applied to software, consumer goods and other manufacturing processes.

Departments from sales to development are using lean methodologies principles to deliver more value to their customers and building organizations that are healthier and more resilient. Well it is a great methodology for manufacturing but nowadays education and construction industry has also adopted these methodologies also numerous startups and software development teams are using these methodologies

10. Six Sigma

Lean Six Sigma adds lean methodology to eliminate waste. Quality management, including empirical statistics and personnel with expertise in these disciplines, is employed. The doctrine of process improvement says that it's important to keep improving your processes. You can't expect to achieve stable, reliable results without keeping the whole organization involved in continual improvements.

This methodology works best in larger organizations with more than 100 employees. Even companies with a few hundred employees are unlikely to take advantage of its benefits because it requires certification. Learn about Six Sigma certification here.

Do You Want To Apply These Methodologies To Your Organization?

So, hope you have understood what these methodologies are and where to use and what are the benefits of them. So if you are someone who wants to apply these methodologies to your organization, then for that your project manager should have to undergo the training of a SAFe Scrum master or Professional Scrum Master™ (PSM) and after attending these pieces of training he will be going to have a good decision-making skill, problem-solving skills, organizational skills, adaptability to certain situations, how to work under pressure.

An important role played by the project manager is to serve as a guide to the team in maintaining decorum. In their role, they are not limited to a single method of instruction. A few of the more surface requirements include abilities like resource management, time management, analytical thinking, and critical thinking. To become a successful agile project manager, you should also consider these factors.


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