Communications Plan

 

The importance of an effective communications plan for LAN cabling installations

 

The four minimum requirements we believe make an effective communication plan for LAN cabling installations.

Free Download: Communications Plan (LAN).pdf

LAN buildout and structured cabling installations require coordination and cooperation between multiple stakeholders. Project managers, 3rd party contractors, inspectors, IT, and facilities management all contribute to a project’s success. Ensuring effective communication throughout the entirety of the project is an important foundational aspect of a successful LAN buildout or structured cabling installation. In this piece, we’ll review 4 important ways to enable effective communication on your next project and avoid costly delays and confusion as a result of poor communication.

#1 Create a Communication Management Plan

As explained in the ART OF COMMUNICATIONS IN PROJECT MANAGEMENT by Sivansankari Rajkumar, the impact of poor communication increases throughout the project life cycle. For this reason, it is of the utmost importance to create and share a communication management plan when the project begins and share it to all stakeholders.

There are a number of communication management plan templates available online, or you can create your own from scratch. Key points to cover include: a purpose statement, identifying stakeholders and roles, defining means of communication, defining standards for project reporting, and scheduling any preplanned meetings.

#2 Publish Schedule Dates

Tasks within a project are often dependent on other tasks. This means stakeholders must be aware of project schedules other stakeholders are working on. There are a variety of project management software tools that can help share schedule dates with all stakeholders, but whatever method you use the important part is: every stakeholder must be aware of the schedule and various completion target dates for the entire project.

#3 Provide Progress Reports

Once a project is rolling, getting regular progress reports to and from stakeholders helps ensure you can quickly adjust to any roadblocks or unforeseen delays. It also helps ensure that other stakeholders know if tasks they are dependent on are on track or not. In short, don’t fall into the trap of assuming things will go according to plan, ensure that regular progress reports are provided to keep everyone informed.

#4 Manage and get approval for changes

Changes to a project can impact multiple stakeholders. Allowing changes to occur in silos is a recipe for disaster in the world of project management. If you must deviate from the original project plan, a formal change management and approval process should be followed. Include all relevant stakeholders in the change management process and keep all stakeholders informed about changes that may impact them.

As we have seen, communication is key when it comes to successful project management. By following the tips here, you can help overcome some of the common communications challenges that project managers in the LAN and structured cabling space face.

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Removing risk begins with removing assumptions

Communication, Documentation and Seeing Around Corners are the big three roles for risk mitigation.

Communication

Early, Frequent and granular communication streamlines any project, but especially WAN Ethernet installations with construction requirements.  

Documentation

Documentation is critical.  Email communications, project agreements, field notes and project conversations should all be recorded and appropriatly dispersed immediatly.

Seeing Around Corners

It is all about expierence.  Knowing what questions to ask, what tasks to prioritize and which stakeholders to approach (and in which order) is paramount to project success.

Learning through experience

We are continously learning and adjusting to make our process better.  We install hundreds of projects each quarter for our customers…and we use that expierence to make future customer expierences better.

Sometimes you should take the road more traveled.

 

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Initial Planning

We know what questions to ask

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Budgets

We know how to reduce risk and accurately budget costs

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Installation

We install WAN projects weekly across the country

Save valuable time, frustration and money with our expertise