A Day in the Life

Project Manager Megan gives you a rundown of what her day at CSG looks like

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A Day in the Life of a Project Manager

No day is ever the same working as a Project Manager within a bespoke software development company. There’s always a multitude of tasks taking place within the team, from UI design to the software development itself.  

Working within this industry, you have to be very dynamic. It’s a fast-paced environment, but that just adds more excitement to my role. The software development industry allows you to apply an ‘everything is possible’ attitude across every aspect of the work – what are the client’s unique software specifications and how can we make it happen? 

Project managing in a bespoke software company is incredibly rewarding; you can see how your output directly helps businesses evolve and influence their communities. So, without further ado, here’s an overview of a day in my life at Clever Software Group.  

Rise and Shine 

I always start the day off with a good pot of coffee – it puts me in the right frame of mind for the day (and who doesn’t love good coffee in the morning?). The Clever Software team have a daily ‘scrum’ at 9am every weekday morning, but I like to set-up beforehand. I check to see if any queries or questions have come in the previous evening from clients, topics that may need to be discussed during the morning meeting. From this, I start to plan out the software development priorities for the day. Soon enough, its 9am – Scrum time! I’d like to clarify this isn’t like a physical rugby scrum. Luckily no gumshields are required here. It’s a time used to go through a rundown of everything taking place within the team.  

The tasks being completed within the Clever Software team all vastly vairy. There are so many different elements that contribute to software development. During these scrum sessions, I distribute software development and design priorities for the day. This largely depends on what each individual member of the team is working on. We go over every aspect of projects that are taking place within the team, from User Interaction side of things, to what is taking place in the marketing schedule and of course, the software development itself. These scrum sessions are so important, especially with what is going on in the world at the moment. We assess feedback, deadlines and project development from clients and stakeholders, but also check-in with each other and make sure everyone in the team is doing okay. Everyone in the Clever Software team misses those office ‘water cooler’ moments, so it’s wonderful to still be able to connect with each other on a daily basis.  

 

Mid-Morning 

Our daily scrum normally lasts around 30 minutes. After this, I will respond to clients and ask further questions about their software specifications, discussed by the team. This allows our software developers to fully understand stakeholders’ desires and produce the best possible software solution. I will usually spend one day a week catching up with clients and ensure we’re ticking off everything they require within their bespoke piece of software.  

I will usually have 3 to 4 meetings with different members of the team throughout my day. During these, I can act as a second pair of eyes on a project and gain a more in-depth understanding of what stage a bespoke software project is at. We can discuss any concerns and delights the member of the team may have and overcome any obstacles that might stand in the way of project progression.  

To further these individual team member meetings, I’ll relay any project and software development feedback from the team, to the clients and stakeholders. Communication is vital throughout software development; you need to ensure everyone involved is on the same page. This enables the whole software development process to run as smoothly as possible.  

I also have a couple of client meetings schedule in my dairy daily. I always make sure I’m fully prepared when meeting with a client, so that I can update them on all project developments. This will allow clients to bounce any new ideas or questions off of myself or our software developers. These interactions mean that I can assess how long a software development project may take, figure out a clients priorities and outline a bespoke software specification. I act as the ‘middle man’ between clients, stakeholders and the Clever Software developers. This means that the team can fully focus on the task at hand, instead of worrying about the finer details of estimations and timeframes.  

Lunch Time 

Between the morning scrum and lunch, I will normally check-in with Clever Software Group’s Managing Director, Andrew. We will discuss new potential software development projects, how current projects are proceeding and summaries what the work load over the next couple of months are going to look like.  

Time for lunch! During my lunch time, I’ll take time out to play with my miniature schnauzer puppy, Noodle. Don’t be fooled – She may look as if butter wouldn’t melt, but she’s a little ball of mischief! She loves running around the garden and plenty of tummy rubs, but she’s been known to chew my socks up on a few occasions. How those are more appealing that her treats, I’ll never now. I’ll give Noodle some food and of course feed myself, before returning to my desk to tackle the afternoons tasks.  

Afternoon Rundown 

I’ll use majority of the afternoon to put together ‘statements of work’ for client’s software projects. This will entail discussing the desired software specifications with our developers and asses whether the brief is possible. After outlining some key factors, I’ll decipher how much this piece of specific software will cost and begin to layout the time scale and schedule of the project. This week for example, I had 4 statements of work to produce for clients – one the S.o.W has been completed, I’ll send it off to the client, to ensure everyone is on the same page. This will allow our software developers to fully understand the project at hand. 

I use applications such as Teamwork to track project deliverables the Clever Software team are working on and JIRA, to view any bugs or issues that have been raised by clients.  

Ideally, we would rather there were no bugs to be raises, but unfortunately from time to time they crop up. As soon as a bug is highlighted, I’ll speak directly to the software developers to ask them what could be causing it and how the problem can be resolved. As much as a bug can be a pain, they help our team of software developers to learn and expand their software knowledgebase further. 

As a Project Manager, I rely on a good selection of lists – they’re second nature to me now and allow me to remain on track. I work directly with roughly 4 clients everyday, with 11 projects on going. That may seem like a lot, but it’s very fulfilling. Being able to see a project be developed from start to finish is incredible, and the software our developers produce us truly outstanding.  

 

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