The challenge with project management in today's world is Agile. With Agile, our mindset has shifted gears and started to make us wonder if project management is becoming irrelevant.
The past favored the Waterfall methodology and MS Project was used to create project plans. Project Plans used to have Projects tasks, responsible person, time, percentage complete, etc. to understand where we were in the project at any given point. Project managers were also responsible to provide status reports once a week in the form of a 4 blocker (PowerPoint) and WBS reports - Work-Breakdown Structure. Project managers were also responsible to maintain IRAAD (Issues, Risks, Action Items, Assumptions, Decisions) in a shared folder like Sharepoint.
Today with Agile, all the work is maintained in tools like JIRA, Assembla, Gemini, Version One, Mingle etc. Stories are created for IRAAD items, status is checked based on points left in backlog, WBS is maintained in the form of story points and velocity.
The challenge is with the new methodology, our teams debate the practicality of project management. We have also asked similar questions; why can't a scrum master perform these responsibilities?
Our experience has included projects with and without a PM performing the regular responsibilities. More often than not, projects that have a Project Manager who maintains the project plan, WBS, IRAAD, etc. in traditional methods have been more successful at delivering on time and under budget.
When three partners Todd, Raashi, Matt have researched and captured the need of a Project Manager in today's era, we realized the absolute need of Modern Project Managers. We have captured our trainings in a way where we make sure our Project manager consultants are Agile experts. They understand the need of hour and are willing to customize the traditional methods to a modern method of project management.
We at Sagious, understand that Agile is the new way of project management but we also understand that project managers keep the discipline in the teams and provide an up to date status for team members and projects velocity to define the roadmap. This helps teams to not only keep moving forward but also having a mindset of understanding the status of the project and the criticality of Business needs.