Challenging the Triple Constraint of Project Management 

Whether you’re managing an eDiscovery project, renovating a kitchen, or…really, the list is long, you’re probably familiar with the “Triple Constraint” of timescope and cost that apply to every project: 

  • Time: How much time it will take to complete the project.
  • Scope: What deliverables will be produced or objectives met within the project. 
  • Cost: How much it will cost to complete the project. 

Typically represented by a triangle with a constraint at each point, the “Triple Constraint” concept helps teams explain that pulling on one constraint (e.g., budget is reduced, deadline is shortened or scope is added), requires a proportional relaxation on at least one of the other two constraints, or quality suffers.  For example, if scope is added, the deadline must be extended and/or resources must be added to address the added scope.   

If the triple constraint had a theme song, it would probably be Meat Loaf’s song Two Out of Three Ain’t Bad.  That’s usually the best a project manager can promise a client when it comes to delivering a project. 

But we also know that technology—the wheel, interchangeable machine parts, the combustion engine—can disrupt the relationship between the three constraints without sacrificing quality.  

  • Scope: Leveraging technology and automation certainly supports the ability to handle increased scope that you can expect from more litigation jobs, more internal investigations and more compliance activity. Data processing operators don’t have to work significantly longer hours to process more data because automated workflows can be pre-established and queued up to kick off as previous processes complete, thus eliminating (or at least minimizing) the need for overtime or multiple shifts. 
  • Time: Technology and automation also support the ability to complete projects faster. Automated check-out and check-in of Workers reduces idle time for those worker processes, enabling them to be applied to other projects more quickly, again improving throughput overall. If it takes 90 minutes to manually execute a series of steps to get an eDiscovery processing job queued up to run and only 5 minutes to queue up that automated workflow of same job, then you can have it faster.  
  • Cost: Leveraging technology and automation here not only avoids the overtime and multiple shifts alluded to earlier, but it also minimizes the personnel resources needed to complete projects in the first place.  With less budget flexibility these days, organizations have no choice but to leverage technology and automation to get more done with less.  Automation enables your organization to keep staffing costs down, with less need to ramp up data processing operators and other staff during “crunch” periods – because each team member can accomplish more than ever! 

And the quality achieved through the process is better than ever!  Operators make mistakes, they forget to check an important option that could cause issues or lead to rework.  Automated processes never “forget” what they’re supposed to accomplish.   

Leveraging technology and automation gives today’s project manager the ability to say: 

“You want it good, fast and cheap?  No problem!” 

Two out of three ain’t bad.  Three out of three is better! 

For more information regarding Rampiva’s Nuix Automation Capabilities, click here

Comments are closed.