International Project Management Day




Maintenance Planning Guidelines and Plan Outline


Quick Summary
This guideline will help you identify the appropriate types and timing of maintenance planning for your project, integrate it into your over all project plan, and eventually produce a full-blown maintenance plan.


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What this is

A guideline for planning ahead for the work that happens after releasing a product or system to its customers, and an annotated outline for writing a Maintenance Plan. The guideline information includes an introduction to what Maintenance is, types of maintenance, and how maintenance planning fits within the development of the system or product to be maintained.


Why it's useful

Although the development project may be done and released, the deliverable from the project simply enters a new phase of its lifecycle. Whether hardware, software or system, the major project deliverables require ongoing support from the company. That support will include activities such as responding to user issues, maintaining the system physically, incorporating enhancements, and performing preventative maintenance. For the success of the product or system in the field, planning ahead thoroughly for proper maintenance support will be crucial.


How to use it

  1. Read the guidelines material starting on page 2, including

    • Introduction to Maintenance
    • Defining the "Maintenance Concept"
    • Maintenance Planning Overview - Types and Timing
  2. Determine which aspects of that maintenance apply to the deliverables from your project.

  3. Using the information on page 4, "Maintenance Planning Overview, Types and Timing," determine when in your project cycle you should begin writing a maintenance plan.

  4. Adapt the Maintenance Plan outline starting on page 5 to your specific projects.

  5. Add maintenance planning activities to your project schedule (if your project is in its earlier days).

  6. If your project is well down the road, call a meeting to discuss maintenance planning and get "caught up." For example, if you're in development and have not created a maintenance concept yet, it would be a high priority to do so quickly, so that insights from that can be fed into the detailed design work happening.

  7. Ensure that maintenance planning has a specific owner going forward, continues to be a regular part of your project look-ahead, and has adequate inputs to development and test reviews.

  8. Update the plan iteratively as you move through the project, yielding a full-blown maintenance plan later in the project, in time to ensure all aspects of personnel and processes will be in place when the product or system is released to production/deployment.


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