Goal: Review final project information

Applies to
Microsoft Office Project 2003
Microsoft Office Project Server 2003
Microsoft Project 2000 and 2002

History gives us the best indicator of future trends. The end of a project is an opportunity to create a history of your project's successes and failures and to share this information with your stakeholders (stakeholders: Individuals and organizations that are actively involved in the project or whose interests may be affected by the project.). A lessons learned (lessons learned: A review of best practices, project insights, and client information. As the project team disbands and new projects begin, reviewing the lessons learned lets you record information gathered and generated through the project.) exercise helps you collect best practices and project data that you can share through reports (report: A format in which you can print schedule information that is appropriate for the intended recipients. You can use the predefined reports provided by Project or create custom reports.), views (view: The combination of one or more views [Gantt Chart, Resource Sheet, and so on] and if applicable, a table and a filter. Use views to work with information in a variety of formats. There are three types of views: Charts or graphs, Sheets, and Forms.), the World Wide Web (WWW) (WWW: A subset of the Internet that uses a graphical user interface as opposed to a text-based user interface. The pages or Web sites that display are formatted using by HTML. Web browsers make it possible for users to view Web sites.), or a Microsoft Exchange Server public folder. You can also reuse your data for future projects by saving your file as a template (template: A Project file format [*.mpt] that lets you reuse existing schedules as the starting point for creating new schedules. Task and resource information, formatting, macros, and project-specific settings can all become part of a template.). These steps can affect the success of future projects.

 Tip   This article is part of a series of articles that describe a broad set of project management activities. We call these activities "goals" because they are organized around the project management life cycle: Build a plan, track and manage a project, and close a project. The project life cycle is outlined in The Project Map, where you can find a link to an article about each project management goal. Most of the articles include links to supporting information or procedures that you perform in Project or Project Server. These "goal" articles were designed to help you not only use Project but also better understand project management.

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Person reviewing final project information

number 1 Review lessons learned    Who wants to relive the mistakes of the past? Lessons learned and best practices describe what kind of project data you should gather and how you should go about gathering it so that you can learn from past projects.

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A lessons-learned exercise documents how the project progressed and best practices by using information gathered from reports, discussions, or meetings. It includes information about a project's successes and failures, and can be used for a final team meeting, training on future projects, or recurring projects. Examining lessons learned provides an opportunity to answer questions like:

A lessons-learned exercise also provides information for administrative closure (administrative closure: The process of documenting and archiving a project in a timely manner, as well as formally accepting the project's product and lessons learned.) and contract closeout (contract closeout: The completion of the contract [such as fixed price or lump sum, cost reimbursable, unit price contracts]. Closeout includes resolving all outstanding issues and items, such as inspections or invoices.). Administrative closure includes verifying scope; archiving or maintaining project information; and producing summary information such as cost, work, and tasks. Contract closeout ensures that the contractors' final work is completed and delivered and that billings or invoices are complete. At contract closeout, it's important to review schedules, changes, and contractor performance.


Number 2 Publish end-of-project information    Closing a project involves summarizing and communicating project information, analyzing project effectiveness, and archiving project data.

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Applies to:
Project 2003