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Mastering your project time

1 min, 54 sec read
12:00 PM | 19 February 2015
by Lars Bjornbakk
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If you’re managing a project or trying to find a way to start your course assignment, it can often be a challenge knowing where to start. 

A tool I recently learned and adopted to my own work is the MoSCoW rule. It’s an acronym for ‘must have’, ‘should have’, ‘could have’ and ‘won’t have’.

It’s a brilliant way to prioritise what is important, and what is less important. Getting yourself to start with the important bit will ensure that you will at least pass on the assignment, or that your project actually meets the necessary need; being worth while.

”…must have, should have, could have and won’t have…”

The ‘must have’ covers the minimum; What is absolutely needed to pass? What is vital for the project to have any value?

The should have’s’ is not vital for the success, but will substantially increase the quality of your work: meaning if you have covered the ‘must have’ and the ‘should have’, you’re right where you’d be expected to be.

The ‘could have’s’ is everything that should be worthy of inclusion, and elements that makes your assignment or project better. Prettier or more interesting; but it is not vital. This is the polishing bit of your project.

The ‘won’t have’s’ is everything that you should keep clear of; parts that don’t add value to your project or that are agreed to be irrelevant to what you’re doing.

You’ll find that far too much time is spent on polishing. Often this results in time loss from what is actually important to get the project working, or getting the assignment to answer the brief.

”…try breaking your next brief into the different MoSCoW categories, you might find it easier to decide where to start.”

The rule states that maximum 60% of the total effort should be spent on the ‘must have’s’. And no more than 80% should be spent on ‘must have’s’ and ‘should have’s’, in order for you to achieve the best possible result on your work.

If you try breaking your next brief into the different MoSCoW categories, you might find it easier to decide where to start. As well as find that time management becomes much easier.

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