Monday, 5 July 2010

Project Plan Post 5 of 7: Project Team Relationships and End User Engagement

Project Team
The project team is split between Mendeley, Symplectic and the University of Cambridge.

Daniel Hook - Symplectic - Project Technical Lead                 
Caroline Rouault - Symplectic - Project Manager 
John Fearns - Symplectic - Head Architect 
Richard Jones - Symplectic - Repository systems architect 

Jan Reichelt - Mendeley - Project director  
Jason Hoyt - Mendeley - Project manager 
Kris Jack - Mendeley - Senior Data Mining Engineer   
Nick Jones - Mendeley - Lead Web Engineer  
Robert Knight - Mendeley - Lead Desktop Engineer    

Laura James - CARET, University of Cambridge - Project manager  
John Norman - CARET, University of Cambridge - Project director 

Elin Stangeland - University Library, University of Cambridge - DSpace liaison  

Patricia Killiard - University Library, University of Cambridge - Project director  

End user engagement

We have a number of channels for end user engagement. Firstly, both CARET and the UL work with researchers and others around the University of Cambridge and operate support desks for existing systems (such as CARET's support for the institutional VRE). We can use these support systems, particularly to monitor for any incoming enquiries.

Mendeley are able to contact their Cambridge users, and are already doing this to ask permission for CARET to contact them directly about this project. In addition, Mendeley operates a university advisor system, through which a volunteer researcher supports local users and connects them to Mendeley. There is also the conventional user support system operated by Mendeley, which may be able to set up a subdomain to handle support specifically about this project. Mendeley also offer a strong user engagement ethos, exemplified by events such as open office Fridays) We hope to work with the incoming university advisor for Cambridge, as well as through our direct user contacts.

Symplectic already have a pilot system in place at Cambridge. We will also work with the local management of the pilot system to establish whether our project will work directly with that, or with a separate instance. In either case, we will work with the pilot project to ensure that clear communication lines exist for researchers using our system vs their system, and to make sure that there is no resulting communication confusion. Daniel at Symplectic has been heavily involved in the Cambridge pilot and can ensure that this relationship operates smoothly. 

In terms of promotion of our project, then, we have a variety of methods available, including using existing channels at Cambridge (such as posters, word of mouth at events where researchers congregate, the librarian network, the VRE announcement system, etc).  We note that it will be important to record the reasons if any user declines to use our system, or expresses any concerns about it, as well as the responses of the enthusiastic. The support systems of CARET and Mendeley both support automatic issue recording and tracking so that issues are not lost or forgotten.

Management of end user communications and end user concerns will be the responsibility of Laura, the project manager at Cambridge.

In addition to the deliverables offered in the proposal, we will also create a report about end user engagement and what this means for sustainability.

External and partner stakeholder management

Day to day, Daniel and Jason will ensure the project progresses at each of their respective companies. Laura will be the project manager responsible for overall project delivery, collaboration and communication (including to JISC and the broader community); this is a 0.25FTE role.  John Norman will be responsible for setting up the project's formal collaboration agreement.

Technical decision-making will be the joint responsibility of Jason and Daniel (the technical leads), with Laura bringing in neutral technical experts (such as Ian Boston) from Cambridge if required to mediate and reach a good conclusion. 

Internal project team management and communication

As all the project collaborators are based in London or Cambridge, even face to face meetings should be feasible, particularly at the start and end of the project.  Kickoff and major review meetings, including those involving JISC, will be face to face meetings.

All partners are experienced at working collaboratively and remotely. We will use a combination of online tools to support our collaboration, to match existing work practices at the project partner institutions (to avoid introducing new tools which do not fit smoothly into established working practices as far as possible). We anticipate using an email list (hosted on CamTools, our Cambridge VRE), a shared subversion repository or Google code site (to be chosen by project technical team contributors), and possibly a BaseCamp site.  We plan to use Skype (including chat) to keep in touch as well as the old staples of email and phone, which we are already using to coordinate our planning.

Laura will be responsible for sharing communication details, monitoring that effective communication is happening at an appropriate frequency, and changing communication methods if necessary to correct any problems, in consultation with the rest of the active project .

1 comment:

  1. Basically this is the project management and it needs to be in the best possible way because it is got a lot, agile and scrum methodologies are more like a process of learning appropriately.