Category Archives: Project Management

Need Help- Project Management 2; CSS Project

Need Help- Project Management 2; CSS Project

CSS Project

As part of your internship at Plush Packet Inc. (PPI), a company that specializes in information technology (IT)-themed educational toys and games, you will be working with Sam Morell, a seasoned project manager who has handled several projects at PPI, to manage the development of a customer support system (CSS). During your time with PPI, you will work with Sam and the other interns on several key aspects of project planning. Sam tells you that PPI management wants a description of the CSS project goals, high-level plans, and the membership of the project team responsible for developing the CSS.

Project Organization

The success of CSS adopted by an enterprise will depend on how well an enterprise organizes the key steps of CSS.  Therefore, a good CSS should have a series of steps in an organized manner.  The organization should start by communicating the company’s vision to all employees to ensure they perform their duties in line with the set vision.  Inter-dependent departments in the organization should have responsibilities that overlap to ensure proper coordination of all efforts.  Such coordination results to perfect customer process.  An organization must ensure their employees have particular job goals that are in line with the business set goals of the entire organization.  For the organization to achieve good CSS, it must train its employees to own the customer issues.  The employees must be willing improve their performance by use of customer feedback as the guidelines.

Management Approach

The success of CSS calls for the need of project management to oversee the project progress and ensure it complies with the set goals, budget as well as the timeline.  Although, this entails a series of processes when applied to large projects for large companies and which involves some people.  The project manager has to start with an identification of the requirements of the whole project.  After that, the project manager has to come up with a schedule, assign available tasks appropriately to all team members as well as a set time limit for each task.  Besides schedule, a project manager has to set a budget that contains enough to meet unexpected expenses.  As the project begins, the manager has to ensure all team members have the required resources to achieve their goals.

Technical Approach

The success of CSS project depends on the technical approaches put in place by the project management.  Technical approaches greatly depend on the use of technology software to assist the success of CSS.  Such approaches include phone support, live chat support and email support.  These approaches make it possible for customers to communicate their desires to the company management.  In return, the project management designs solutions to their complaints thus providing the support system.

Work to be Performed

Work performed in CSS involves the use of technological strategies to ensure customers are satisfied.  Phone support has used where customers communicate their complaints to the management by use of a phone.  Mostly urgent matters are the ones communicated through the use of a phone for immediate action.  Live chat support has used as a communication tool in which visitors from the website seek for help through chat session which has started by the visitor clicking a link on the website of the provider.  Communication has done through email support where customers send messages that are not so urgent to the management.  The management takes action to address the raised issue.






Work Breakdown Structure

  • Project Conception and Initiation.
    • Develop a Budget
    • Idea Communication to Employees
    • Setting Individual Goals to Match Organizational Goals
    • Training Employees
    • Define User Requirements
    • Define Risks
    • Development of the Project Plan
    • Project Kickoff
    • Allocate Duties and Responsibilities
  • CSS Design
  • CSS Development
  • Product Rollout
  • Maintenance and Support





Gantt Chart

Critical Path and Slack Time

Slack time which refers to the amount of time a task in a project can delay but fail to affect the completion of the other tasks or the entire project is calculated by the critical path method.

Slack Time = Late Finish of the Task- Early Finish of the Same Activity

Task 1.1.1: = 63 hours

Task 1.1.2=15 hours

Task 1.1.3= 63 hours

Task 1.1.4= 15 hours

Task 1.1.5= 63 hours

Task 1.1.6= 63 hours

Task 1.1.7= 15 hours

Task 1.1.8= 0 hours

Task 1.1.9= 15hours

Task 1.2= 63 hours

Task 1.3= 63 hours

Task 1.4= 63 hours

Task 1.5= 63 hours

In the CSS Project, all tasks are safe apart from task 1.1.8.  In the CSS Project, tasks 1.1.8 and 1.1.9 are on the critical path.  These are tasks forming the longest combined duration.

The tasks that are most likely to suffer delay are 1.1.4 (training employees) and 1.5 (product rollout).  In the CSS Project, the highest risk of time spill is the inclusion of learning and system maintenance after roll out.  Task 1.1.4 which involves the training of employees is likely to cause delays.  It is because the learning process cannot be perfectly estimated as it depends on the learners’ abilities.  On the other hand, the methods of teaching employed will determine how interested and motivated the employees are in the learning process.  The next task is 1.1.9 which involves the product maintenance stage.  It will involve analysis of product’s feedback and the correction of errors.  It will mostly delay as the level of feedback may differ which results to more time used to correct the identified system errors.

If an aspect of the CSS Project task has delayed, there will be a likely delay of the completion of the project.  It is because, even though the project shows that approximately 90% of the tasks can delay without delaying the other tasks, the only slack time available is only at night and weekends.  All the tasks with 15 hours are in consecutive days while those with 63 hours are on weekends.  It means that any delay will lead to working during extra time at night or the weekends.  It will consequently increase the costs incurred to pay the involved employees which will increase the operational costs.  In such a case, the budget will be altered and so is the project plan.  To avoid all these alterations, it is important for the involved parties in the project to ensure they hit the periodic targets set by the project manager (Schwalbe, 2016).

Need Help- Project Management 2; CSS Project

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