Project Management

Using Simple Project Data to Make Better Decisions

PMI Chennai Chapter

Rajakumar is a Senior Consultant working in a reputed IT company. He has successfully managed multiple customers' strategic projects. He has gained expertise by managing different types of projects including end-to-end Development, Maintenance & Support, Production Support and Hybrid. Currently he is a faculty member in the Project Management Academy. He trains and mentors potential project managers and project leaders in his organization.

I’m sure many of you are aware about how effectively data is used by retailers, banks, insurance agencies, etc. in the current digital era. These institutions use historical data to identify potential customers, predict future growth, cluster customers, provide recommendations to customers, etc. Data is effectively used for better business decisions.

Do you think data analytics could be effectively used only for those business segments? Can we do similar data analytics for our own projects? Of course! Every project has an ample amount of data. It’s mainly at a PM’s discretion to use it effectively. Do statistics and data analytics scare you? In this article, I’ll discuss how very simple statistical concepts can be applied in project situations—and how PMs can make effective decisions based on that.

You don’t need to be a statistician to apply these concepts. You need to be an end user who comes up with the inference for the statistical testing output—and make wise decisions in the project. How can you do this? Let’s start our discussion with the basics first, then continue our journey by adopting those basics in practical situations.

First, the basics…
Most of us learned basic statistical terms in our school days. Let’s quickly refresh our knowledge:

  • Mean (average): Arithmetic average of given data …

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