This article provides an overview of the third stage of a typical waterfall project methodology.

The purpose of this phase is to design the solution for the change. It is important that a holistic approach to all aspects of the design is adopted. This phase ensures the correct preparing and planning for the effective and efficient use of the 4 Ps: the people, the processes, the productions (services, technology and tools) and the partners (suppliers, vendors etc.). The phase also ensures that once designs, plans etc. are produced, they are published and agreed by all key stakeholders prior to progressing to the build phase.
Entry criteria include:

  1. Functional requirements, management & operational requirements and usability requirements.
  2. Requirements (CP2) Checkpoint approval from the PMO.

Exit criteria include:

  1. Completed designs & plans.
  2. Design (CP3) Checkpoint approval from the PMO.

Typical outputs include:

  1. Design strategy.
  2. Design specifications.
  3. Updated business case, costs, benefits etc.
  4. Testing strategy.
  5. Development/Transition plans.
  6. Training strategy.
  7. Updated risk plan.
  8. Data migration plan.
  9. CP3 pitch.

Typical PMO questions include:

  1. Has the system design been reviewed & approved by all stakeholders?
  2. Does the system design meet all solution requirements?
  3. What are the project costs & benefits now that design is complete?
  4. Does a comprehensive development/transition plan exist?
  5. Has resource planning been completed, with adequate resources identified and secured?
  6. Have all the required strategies and plans been produced?
  7. What is the proposed infrastructure solution?
  8. Is the process for data migration documented?
  9. Have the regulatory requirements been incorporated?
  10. Have any financial and/or schedule changes been approved?
  11. Have software licensing, infrastructure, architecture, DR, legal, data, security approvals been received?

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