Which Project Management Methodology is Right for Your Team?
Different companies have different needs, and when it comes to individual projects, no two are alike. With so many project management methodologies to apply to your projects, it can be difficult to know exactly which one is right for your team.
To help make it easier to pick the right one for your needs, we’ve created a guide that breaks down the most common project management methodologies used by modern businesses. We’ll outline the advantages and disadvantages of each, while also discussing the sectors and types of projects to which they are best suited.
No matter which one you decide to go with, the right project management software perfectly complements any project. Scoro can add a unique twist to your workflow, giving you the opportunity to seamlessly introduce any form of project management mentioned here into your existing operations.
Agile project management relies on building, refining, and improving a project as it goes along. By taking a nonlinear approach, businesses can break down their larger goals into more palatable parts, giving all team members a better understanding of how their tasks fit into the project overall.
The primary advantage of Agile approach:
- Offers room for flexibility rather than forcing you to follow a “step-by-step” methodology.
- Gives your team the opportunity for plenty of open communication.
However, one key disadvantage to agile project management is that its inherent lack of limitations can actually be restrictive. This is because it isn’t actually suited to projects with short timeframes, especially those that hinge on some “big reveal”, as they need perfect planning and execution, which is best found in other methodologies.
When to choose Agile methodology?
Agile is the best project management model for open-ended, unpredictable projects.
Since it operates on a cycle that thrives on unpredictability, agile project management works well with clients running multiple unpredictable campaigns simultaneously.
Consequently, both marketing agencies and software developers are well-served by this approach. It can be a somewhat uncertain management methodology, but with the right team in your corner, agile can be a breeding ground for true innovation.
Scrum has been used by businesses across the board for decades. Still going strong, it relies on short “sprint” periods, with a greater aim of building a consistent output for clients. And, as it focuses on adapting your work as things unfold, it can be considered somewhat similar to the agile methodology, albeit with a few notable differences.
A great choice for teams that run projects that aren’t planning heavy, scrum works especially well for those who thrive on responding to every small change in workflow. It creates an environment of total transparency, constant evaluation, and incremental improvements, which are often easy to implement. On the negative side, this methodology doesn’t set end dates for projects, which often results in the dreaded “scope creep”.
When to choose Scrum methodology?
Scrum is the best project management model for collaboration and teamwork.
Scrum is particularly popular in the education and marketing fields due to its collaborative approach. Agencies of all sizes benefit a lot from it in the diverse marketing business landscape.
In the education space, scrum is useful because of how heavily it leans on problem-solving. e-Learning, in particular, has exploded since the start of the pandemic, and companies in this sector have been forced to regularly and quickly adapt their methods to meet the needs of learners of all ages and skill levels.
Waterfall has been around for over half a century and remains relevant to the world of project management today. Although its sequential processes might seem dated, the waterfall structure works well for teams who aim for consistent results across a small (but loyal) base of clients.
It thrives on fixed, step-by-step sequences that feed directly into each other, which in turn helps projects reach their end goal without too many fluctuations.
The linear nature of the waterfall methodology can be a mixed bag, giving businesses a solid and reliable base, but with the risk of things getting somewhat rigid and stubborn. Sequences are typically kept as uncomplicated as possible, but only if everyone in the team stays on the same page at all times.
One significant downside of waterfall is that it requires thorough documentation and record-keeping that, if conducted offline, can be a real drain on team resources. However, making use of Scoro’s digital reporting features removes the offline paper trail completely and helps everyone stay connected to the workflow.
When to choose Waterfall methodology?
Waterfall methodology is the best project management model for regular, repeated projects.
When it comes to regular, well-structured, repeated projects, waterfall is one of the best methodologies a business can use. These aspects make it a popular choice in the IT space, especially since the sector doesn’t tend to work on too many projects that require a lot of daily input.
Established, corporate-leaning marketing agencies can also thrive using this approach, especially for campaigns that need to deliver everything all at once. Adding a Gantt chart into the mix makes coordinating easy as pie.
Scoro allows you to create these charts yourself, making it a worthwhile add-on for any teams that might be keen to adopt the waterfall methodology themselves.
Prince2 – otherwise known as “projects in controlled environments” – is a project management methodology beneficial to teams that value organization above everything else.
Each member should ideally be detail-oriented, with an understanding that everything in the project has to point directly to the goals of the business at all times. It also hinges on thorough cost assessments and a lot of planning before the project kicks off, with quality control built into operations right from the get-go.
When it comes to the amount of time allocated to planning, defining roles, and the (often forgotten) reflection process, Prince2 is arguably stronger than the other methods here. Most other methodologies don’t give teams the chance to carve out time for everyone to absorb and learn from their developments in real-time.
However, a disadvantage of Prince2 is its reliance on strict rules, which can delay the start of a project, especially among teams that aren’t used to meeting regularly.
When to choose Prince 2 methodology?
Prince 2 is the best project management model for flexible projects.
Although it might not look like it to the naked eye, this methodology can excel with flexible projects, provided you have paid close attention to the planning phase. Public sector operations find Prince2 useful as a result, often offering a welcome disruption to the neverending bureaucratic red tape that has to be navigated gently.
It’s also worth noting that each phase of the Prince2 methodology works autonomously, which might explain why the construction sector finds it particularly useful. If a particular building project comes to a screeching halt for one reason or another, it won’t hold up any other parts of the operation.
5. Lean Six Sigma
The Lean Six Sigma project management methodology centers around everyone in the team having a thorough grasp of their customers’ needs. It considers all existing and possible wasteful processes that could get in the way, striving to rectify them as they pop up.
This methodology operates across five important phases, namely:
- Defining the project
- Ensuring correct data measurements
- Analyzing issues at their core
- Making swift improvements
- Increasing quality control on the whole
This last phase relates to one of the major benefits of Lean Six Sigma because it puts more weight on quality control than other project management methodologies.
However, the obvious downside is that its customer-centric approach can make things very rigid and limiting at times. Anything related to the project is considered defective if it isn’t explicitly acceptable to the end customer. This might drive up costs and reduce profit margins but will deliver a higher-quality end product.
When to choose Lean Sigma Six methodology?
Lean Sigma Six is the best project management model for large companies with complex processes.
Bigger companies in manufacturing and finance have a lot to gain from Lean Six Sigma. They usually have the resources to implement highly complex processes – more so than their SME counterparts – and generally have a better cash flow to counter any unforeseen knocks to the bottom line.
Projects that require high-quality outputs also have a lot to gain from using this methodology, be it end products or services. Lean Six Sigma offers a lot of structure, which is why it is better suited to teams who are used to dealing with perfectionist customers.
Now that you know all about the most popular project management methodologies found in the modern workplace, you’re just a single decision away from choosing the one that will best meet the needs of your next project.
A reliable work management software like Scoro can offer an additional set of benefits to you and your team, on top of those brought about by your methodology of choice, and can help to minimize the disadvantages.
Start a free trial to see just what our project management software can do for your business.
After all, when used collectively, the methodology-software combo will help you tick all the boxes and set the stage for endless possibilities for innovation along the way.