Let's visualise IT project delivery as consisting of two segments. The first, dealing with requirement gathering and analysis, and detailing the solution from the business and technical perspective. The second, dealing with coding, testing and implementing the software. The first represents project knowledge and the second relates to its technical implementation. Software engineering focuses on both. While there has been a significant advancement in technical implementation, project knowledge has not matured at the same rate. Project knowledge is still plagued with gaps in effective representation, communication, competency and quality assurance, and there is significant opportunity to improve this area.
We try to manage project knowledge largely through experienced associates, strong adherence to processes and documentation, and robust communication with stakeholders. In this book, I have gone deeper into this by decomposing knowledge and representing it via data points. I have conceptualised the Project Knowledge Model (PKM) to manage the project knowledge in a structured manner. PKM catalogues the entire project knowledge and integrates it together with an exhaustive traceability mechanism. PKM has the potential to assist all the existing project delivery methodologies. It digitises project knowledge which, in turn, assists in the technical implementation of the software as well.
I have expanded PKM to cover end-to-end project delivery and evolved a new methodology of project delivery, named Knowledge Driven Development (KDD). KDD is driven by PKM and blends the Waterfall and Agile project delivery concepts. The bridging of the gap between Waterfall and Agile project delivery is an underlying theme that runs throughout this book and is a positive spin-off from the digitisation of project knowledge.
Taking the knowledge decomposition concept beyond IT, I have also evolved a Generic Knowledge Management Framework (GKMF) which has the potential to manage generic knowledge and assist in skill development.
This book introduces PKM, KDD and GKMF with a case study and examples. It elaborates PKM and explains how the model may help the project delivery, regardless of the project delivery methodology followed. The idea is still conceptual and untested but matured enough to be presentable. Objective of this book is to present the idea in a meaningful manner to enable further work on it.
What inspired me the most to work towards this methodology were the numerous instances of lost time, misdirected effort and the ensuing delays in project delivery.