By Published On: 1 March 2021Categories: Articles4.4 min read

Use Agile or Waterfall? Instead of being confused about choosing one of the two, why not just “both”? There is an alternative choice of project management methods for those of you who are so adaptive but still want to apply firm characteristics of Waterfall in some other elements. So, the answer for it is Hybrid Project Management!

What is Hybrid Project Management?

Hybrid Project Management is a project management method that refers to a method that combines planning strategies from the traditional project management environment (Waterfall) with a more flexible and fast (Agile) approach. Jim Stewart, Toptal’s project manager, scrum master, and agile coach, say “True hybrid is a combination of predictive and uncertain work.” The term “hybrid” comes after you get something new after combining the two. So, hybridization is a creative process, where we can create a new, distinctive, useful pattern to manage projects better.

One of the negative things that often happens is the idea that the Waterfall and Agile methods are two opposing approaches and compete with their respective advantages. To get a broader perspective, we seem to have to reject this kind of binary option. The reason is that predictive and adaptive project management cannot be divided by two choices of methods that bring their respective benefits by choosing only one of them. For this reason, the term “cut and shut” is used in hybrid project management. For example, when we take several salvageable components and combine them into a new car from two damaged cars.

hybrid project management

Why is Hybrid Project Management Needed?

1. Hybrid as a Transitional Stage

Imagine if your company immediately switched to the fast-paced Agile method after a long implementation of the Waterfall system, it would be a big leap that might make it difficult for the company. Because of this, some organizations have opted for a hybrid method to reduce leaps and bounds and total adaptation. Therefore, hybrid project management is usually applied by first applying certain indicators in companies whose processes are changed to be faster and more adaptive.

2. Concerns in Agile Project Management

The fast-paced and adaptive characteristics of the Agile style do not come without risks. Not all companies and the projects within them can fit and run dynamically in this Agile style. Especially if you apply this method to a project whose space and time situation is not narrow. So, if your project still wants to run as fast as possible but can’t compromise on mismatches in some of its elements, then one of the best decisions is to transition through hybrid project management.

3. Concerns About Predictive Project Management (Waterfall)

Like Agile, the Waterfall method doesn’t come without its risks. Your company may have a predictive nature of the project but must adapt to various elements. So just as above, implementing hybrid project management can also be a wise middle ground.

4. Provide a Suitable Approach to The Project

As a project manager, your task is clear, namely to find the most suitable project management method so that it can be completed on time, within budget, according to specifications, and with full accountability. The most important point is to find the approach with the least risk but with the maximum value delivery. It is possible that the approach is hybrid.

Then, How to Create Hybrid Project Management?

Traditional (Predictive Project Management)

This type of project management method is also popularly known as the Waterfall Method. Even though it sounds old-fashioned and outdated, there are some important characteristics of this one method that you can take for the hybridization process are:

1. Have significant planning, in which the project objectives and the activities that run therein have been carefully prepared.

2. Monitoring, control, and governance of projects that are already at a high level.

Agile (Adaptive Project Management)

This one method is now the most popular used by various projects, especially those related to software development. This method is suitable for use in fast-moving and adaptive work environments. Some of the important characteristics of this method that you can take for the hybridization process are:

1. Strong focus on the needs of users and other stakeholders.

2. An iterative and gradual development approach.

What is The Role of the Project Manager in Hybrid Project Management?

This one question seems to be in some people’s minds when they hear about Hybrid Project Management pattern. Indeed, in Agile methods, particularly those implementing the Scrum framework, the role of the project manager is often absent. Instead, the project manager’s responsibilities will be divided into teams. In Scrum, project manager roles can be taken over by: Scrum Master, the Product Owner, and the entire Scrum Team.

However, in a hybrid method, there is almost certainly a project manager role that carries out tasks such as:

1. Coordinate several Agile elements in the project.

2. Monitoring and control of the overall teamwork.

3. Defining the details of the ongoing project, such as project definition, business case, infrastructure, to the agreed contract.

4. As a project communicator who is involved with all stakeholders at large.

5. Close and finish the project work.

That’s a light review of what Hybrid Project Management is and its working description for your project. Find out more about the latest information about project management here with Tomps.id, your project management solution!

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