7.7 Planning for quality
Having considered estimating for time and for costs, the third dimension of projects – quality needs to be considered. The need to achieve a particular level of quality may mean that more time must be spent completing certain tasks or that more resources must be made available for a particular purpose. Once the time and cost estimates have been made, review them to ensure that this estimate will allow an outcome of the right quality.
Many organisations have corporate quality assurance systems in place, which have to be applied to any project for which they are responsible. However, difficulties may arise when several quality assurance systems are in operation in a multi-agency project. In such a case, it would be possible to include the development of an appropriate quality assurance framework as part of the project itself.
Part of the documentation for a project may include a ‘quality manual’ which describes the aims of the project, how each part of the project system is organised functionally, procedural documentation that states how each task is to be completed, and any relevant technical specifications. The quality assurance process needs to be monitored and communicated to stakeholders, with regular reviews built into the reporting cycle.