Organisation and planning are key components to success when managing a complex project. It isn’t enough to be knowledgeable about the different elements involved in the project’s implementation. Even with the best team in place, there are numerous points in the process where they may not be on the same page. If you’re going to effectively communicate what is needed from others, you need systems and processes to assist you, to make sure every element has been accounted for. Don’t lose your grasp on order; take a few notes from software developers who truly understand the benefits of systems that implement inputs, processing and outputs. Watch this video to learn from the best.
I’m going to use curry ordering as the example to show you a working example through each of these scenarios: inputs, processing and outputs. This one is almost embarrassingly simple. I have two software engineering degrees because one wasn’t enough. One of the things they teach every software engineer is creating a system can be modeled using inputs, processing and outputs.
The beauty of this approach is that it is really simple and clear and this is the approach I often find myself coming back to when I’m in the middle of something. I’m working with a customer and it feels really complex. We’re wrestling with things, let’s just step back and I say, “what are the inputs, what is the processing and what are the outputs?” Creating a system can be mapped this way.
Let’s look at the inputs, processing and outputs for a curry ordering system. We have to input the menu into the curry ordering system, the menu changes. We have to put orders into it and we have to put in payment methods or payment preferences. We have to sum the orders, we have to add them up, we have to check that the delivery value is met. You can’t put a curry order through for less than $30 with our local curry shop, otherwise someone has to drive down and pick it up and we store IOUs – we do some processing. Outputs, we get reminders. Our system tells people it’s time to order curry, 10 o’clock every Friday. You get reminded, go and order your curry. It puts out an order summary, it tells us what we’ve got and who owes us the money. It does the debt collection summary. So we need a system to output our orders.
Inputs are typically data from people or systems. So it’s data that people are going to put into it and it’s data that comes from other systems. Increasingly it’s data from other systems. When you’re thinking about inputs, think about that. The outputs are screens and paper, that’s what is going to come out of your system.
If you go to your developer and say these are my inputs, this is the processing and these are the outputs, you will have communicated better than most clients do. This is a pretty simple, straight up technique, number one.
By using these suggestions, you should be able to harness the power to organise, plan, design and communicate effectively when teaming together for a complex project. By being able to identify the parts of your project that belong to the input process, and what elements are in the procedural category, you can assess the requirements, benefits and challenges involved in arriving at the right results.
Learn how to apply the process of implementing inputs, processing and outputs by getting in touch with us today.