Successful System Deployment through Operational Readiness



Book Title:  Successful System Deployment through Operational Readiness   
Author:  Pascal Bohulu Mabelo
Publisher:  E 6 Project Consulting (Pty) Ltd (South Africa)
List Price:   Free Download
Format:  PDF eBook
Publication Date:   2018
ISBN: 978-0-620-79883-9
Reviewer: Ivan Kotcher, PMP
Review Date: July 2019




Many project management books focus on the day-in and day-out of project management—usually focusing on how to keep projects on track in terms of scope, quality, budget.  Very few focus on how best to start a project or how to ensure ongoing success once the immediate objective of the project has been reached and the outcomes delivered.  This book is a welcome addition to the art of thinking holistically about why even well-executed projects can result in outcomes that do not succeed in helping the business or governmental organization executing them, and addressing what critical success factors are involved in guiding positive integration with the preexisting environment.

Just as a project and program team has to be prepared through the organizational and structured management strategies of good practice, customer organizations also have to be prepared to receive project results.  Requirements understanding in terms of customer goals is critical, but so is analysis about how the benefits of the project or program will be maintained over time.  Acceptance of changes resulting from, or even intended by, the project usually requires attention to both the environment surrounding the project (e.g., physical environment in the case of construction projects, legal or regulatory policies) and to what is driving the behaviors the people who make up an organization (e.g., skills level, performance indicators, or even cultural mores).

Overview of Book’s Structure

The book is structured as a broad overview of planning for Operational Readiness, the term used for preparing for ongoing operations.  The author focuses primarily on Large Infrastructure Projects (LIPs), but information technology (IT) infrastructure projects also receive some attention.  The book begins by defining operational readiness by reference to systems engineering and systems thinking, considering it in terms of maintenance, ongoing operations, and retirement as aspects of the ongoing lifecycle of project deliverables.  The book has multiple references to available literature from the International Council on Systems Engineering (INCOSE) and several individual authors, providing a coherent explanation and approach to exploring the subject.

While arguments for the scope of the necessity of operational readiness are welcome, the book also provides some good concrete examples to prove the point.  The most effective one revolves around the design, delivery, and operations of Terminal 5 at Heathrow Airport (just outside London, one of the largest airports in the world)—a clear failure on delivery due to the lack of attention on service transition to operations.  Lessons learned and applied in later airport expansion are covered, which drives the point home.


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About the Reviewer

Ivan Kotcher

Texas, USA




Ivan Kotcher, PMP, is a project and program manager with strategic and operational consulting experience across the full breadth of data center infrastructure management.  He has over 20 years of experience working with telecommunications and application hosting companies ranging in size from global carriers to startups.   He currently works as a Principal Consultant with Infosys, helping customers to evolve business processes and associated supporting technologies to improve cost profiles and service delivery.

Ivan can be contacted at ikotcher@ot-partners.com


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