Project Management

The Importance of a Lessons Learned Archive in Project Management

M.K .Ramesh, BE (Civil Engineering), MBA, PMP, has over 30 years of experience in managing the construction of sub-stations and transmission lines for organizations operating in India’s energy sector. He has managed projects of various capacities, which also include experience in consultancy project work in the Middle East and Africa. He is a member of PMI Mumbai Chapter.

By their nature, all projects regardless of their size are unique. During the project lifecycle—from conception through completion—all stakeholders attempt to mitigate issues or constraints at each stage in an effort to achieve the project goals. By picturizing the events mitigated during the project lifecycle in the form of a lessons learned archive, we can facilitate the definition of a scope statement for new projects. 
A project manager with access to organizational archives can use this information on past projects as a “ready-reckoner.” They can achieve optimal project execution by eliminating common errors—and do this through the incorporation of innovative past practices. 
With each project being unique in its composition (and stakeholders, outcomes, uncertainties, etc.), that accrued experience will add to the knowledge base. The archive becomes a dependable source to optimize the efforts of everyone involved with project delivery, as the documentation of problems/constraints faced—and how they were resolved at various stages of project execution—is an effective tool that saves time and money when creating documents for new projects.
Project managers should create documentation on each project cycle in all knowledge areas. This will create avenues to the historical information/…

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