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Introduction - The Importance of Best Practices in Project Management

Clive Stephens, Director of Operations at Expo 2020 Dubai and General Manager of the Olympic Park at London 2012, gives his thoughts on project management, risk management and reporting

logo lineProject Management

Laying out key strategic organisational tasks and milestones at the outset of a project provides the framework for all functions to build their project plans. It ensures clarity and consistency of direction - and allows the organisation to begin the process of cross-functional integration, identifying where interdependencies lie as well as potential areas of risk.

Risk Management

Mitigating risks before they turn into issues prevents a project from stalling, enabling continuous and consistent progress towards successful delivery. The importance of identifying, recording and reviewing uncertainties and their potential impact is vital if a project is to be successfully delivered.


In project management, your information is complex: it needs to be recorded, easy to find and delivered from one place in bespoke reports. Reporting against progress and identifying critical milestones, projects and risk mitigations is a crucial project in itself.

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Read on, or download our full guide, to explore our insights on project management - from the basics and beyond, from risk management to reporting.

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Project Management: The Basics

Project Management for Your Organisation: The Basics

Project management basics are the building blocks of your organisation's work.

There are often huge differences in project management experience between different people in your organisation. Make sure everyone is using the same terminology and understands the level of work that would be considered a project, a task, and so on. It is also important to establish clear definitions for rating the progress of tasks. Does red simply mean overdue, or is it related to risks and issues impacting on the task?

Here is how we do it in WeTrack.

The Work

  • A project is a distinct set of work with an achievable endpoint, consisting of hundreds of tasks or fewer than twenty;
  • A task is a basic unit of work which could last for one day or for several months; they are actions that need doing; they might be less significant actions that just require monitoring, or very important milestones upon which your project depends;
  • You can group similar tasks in a project together into task groups, or break a task down into smaller sub-tasks.

the work

The People Doing It

Individuals, functions and departments are the people owning and doing the work.

the people doing the work

And How To Measure Progress

This is the most important area to achieve uniformity across your organisation, as it is the bedrock of your reporting.

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5 Steps To Develop Your Milestone Roadmap

Milestones are the irreducible minimums of your entire portfolio of work - they are the building blocks around which your projects and tasks should be developed.

Milestones are the ultimate goals that need to be achieved - with the timelines based around successfully completing the large pieces of work that you have identified as important in the medium-term. 

So with those larger goals in place, how do you go about developing your baseline milestone plan that leads up to that point?

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  1. List the significant chronological milestones contributing to the successful delivery of upcoming projects
  2. Get your governance in order
  3. Confirm timelines for stakeholder milestones
  4. Decide on milestones that every internal team needs to hit
  5. Let each individual team decide their own major milestones

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Dependencies and the Gantt Chart - Linking and Managing your Tasks and Milestones

Introducing some project management essentials to help you understand how your areas of work impact upon each other.


It is critical to understand how your projects and tasks relate to your team's projects and tasks - to boost collaboration, aid resource planning, and avoid re-work.

The Gantt Chart

The best place to visualise dependencies is in a Gantt chart. This visual timeline tool gives you a view of all projects, milestones and tasks, and how they relate to each other through dependencies.

Especially useful for those who like to work more visually!

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If you'd like to learn more about the Gantt chart, read our piece on the value of using Gantt to track milestones in your event programme management.

Project Management In Depth

Finding The Right Project Management Methodology

If you're a project management expert, you can probably skip this article. But if terms like Waterfall and Scrum leave you scratching your head, read on!

Some flexibility in how your team operates will always be useful, but having an understanding of key methodologies in project management will enable you to support your team to achieve successful projects with efficient ways of working.

Here we pick out four methodologies that you should know about.

logo lineWaterfall

This approach is great if you are delivering a project with a very fixed structure, because it involves completing a series of pre-defined steps, in order. Great for predictability, bad for flexibility.


This approach enables faster work, with frequent iterations of the scope of work. Great for flexibility, bad for predictability!


Part of the Agile approach, a Scrum consists of completing pieces of work in short cycles, of around two to four weeks. There is less long-term planning, and more constant iteration.


Standing for Projects In Controlled Environments, PRINCE2 is the standard project management qualification in the UK. It is structured and risk-averse, dividing each project into seven phases. 

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Getting the best from your team

This is what every project management methodology aims to do!

More important than any one methodology, is to empower your team to work efficiently and effectively.

Your PM methodology needs to fit your entire organisation or team. But with 101 different ways to manage a project, finding that right fit is difficult and will take time. Here are a series of questions to ask yourself as you look for that perfect fit.

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  • Are you working towards any fixed deadlines, such as an event?
  • Is your team large or small?
  • Is there a large amount of risk to stakeholders and the public?
  • Do you have a very clear idea of what the finished product of the project should look like?
  • How, and how often, do you need to report to executive level and stakeholders?
  • And are you working within a very fixed budget, or does it have room to grow?

Introduction to Enterprise Project Management and How to Introduce It Into Your Organisation

Including four tips on how to follow an enterprise project management model for your organisation's work.

Organisations come to WeTrack to facilitate effective project and / or event management across their whole organisation. With this in mind, here we write about enterprise project management - managing multiple complex projects simultaneously across your organisation or event.

Enterprise project management gets your whole organisation working as a collective to achieve objectives, communicating across varied departments and projects to facilitate effective and efficient work. It is a methodology that unifies your organisation and maximises opportunities to collaborate, in order to allocate resources, manage risks, and execute important projects. It focuses on long-term goals and bigger business objectives, rather than short-term activity.


Organisations converting to an enterprise project management model could increase profits by up to 20% - from saved time, reduced risk, and less re-work

Villanova University


Introducing Enterprise Project Management

Four key steps to succeed here:

  1. Demonstrate the benefits across the organisation - to achieve buy-in.
  2. Assign or hire a qualified project manager to lead the change - this will bring much-needed efficiency and coherence.
  3. Put in the time, and go big - get every department involved, and get them onboarded.
  4. Use enterprise project management softwareto give you a single source of truth, online.


15% of project managers work on more than 10 projects simultaneously. If that's the scale your organisation operates at, you need to explore what enterprise project management could do for you

Girl's Guide to Project Management, 2021


Understanding Change Management

Some of the projects you will be working on have a very long lifespan - and technologies, practices, budgets and stakeholders will change considerably. That's why it is vital to have a formal change management process.

A change is anything that impacts a project or task and necessitates an alteration in dates, scope or other aspect of that project or task.

These changes need to be managed intelligently: identifying when they are needed and when they are not, understanding the implications of the change to projects and milestones, and putting that change into practice - approving it, communicating it and ensuring it has been enacted.

The consequences of a poor change management process is the risk that milestones are pushed back without understanding how that impacts other milestones, causing cumulative and eventually damaging delays to the overall progress of your project delivery.

In a similar way to risk management, change management works best when it is predictive and proactive. An acceptance that your organisation needs to be adaptable is key. 

It is also wise to build some contingency into your milestone plan, where possible, so that one change does not disrupt the entire baseline plan for a project.

Appoint a Change Manager role within your Project Management Office (if you have one), set up a simple mechanism for change requests, and go from there.

Why not read our full article on change management?

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Project Management for Event Planners - What Can We Learn?

Many WeTrack customers and connections work in events - here are 5 practices to take from project management into your event management.

There are plenty of areas where thinking like a project manager will boost the work of an event manager.

But retain the flexibility of an event manager too! We don't want to discourage the creativity and fluidity of event managers in delivering a major event that has more and more moving parts the closer it gets to event day.

Here are our 5 best practices to combine the best of project management and event management.

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  1. Define projects and establish goals. This shapes the whole planning and delivery of your event. 
  2. Develop a Work Breakdown Structure. Set out the large areas of work and then divide them into manageable packages in a hierarchical structure of projects, task groups and tasks, with important milestones identified.
  3. Make friends with the Gantt chart. It's your valuable visual timeline tool, enabling you to view workloads, dependencies and milestones.
  4. Use a risk register. No matter how well you plan, there will be uncertainties - good and bad - and how you respond to them will define the success of your event.
  5. Close out processes properly. Complete your event programme management well by learning lessons - a practice which should begin at the very start of your event planning.

logo lineAs an event manager, you are rightly conditioned to trust your instincts and be versatile. But, do implement some of these best practices to keep your event operations coherent and take everything you can to keep improving your methods.

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Going Digital: Project Management Software

The Value of Using Project Management Software In Your Organisation

The bigger your business, the more time and money you will save.

WeTrack was built by event operators from the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games who recognised that event programme management needed to move beyond spreadsheets and emails, and we still believe that! Here we will focus on the clear benefits of using a project management system to manage any organisation and save you time, money and risk.

The bigger your business, the more time and money you will save.

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Why use project management software?

  1. It tracks tasks. This, at its very simplest, is what will give you confidence in your operations.
  2. It helps you collaborate. It puts your whole team on one platform, letting them work together by communicating within the platform and sharing responsibility on tasks.
  3. It provides a single source of truth. You can go to the same place every time and look at information that you know to be as accurate as possible.
  4. It enables different views. Different members of your team will want to view their project plans in different ways - be that Gantt, calendar, or lists. And no one wants to view it in a spreadsheet!
  5. It automates reporting. This both saves a huge amount of time and improves the quality of your reporting.

logo lineStart with your reporting needs and go from there - understanding how information needs to flow through your organisation should shape your project management approach and your software needs.


Six Reasons Why Project Management Systems Fail and How To Make Sure They Succeed For You

Making project management software work for you - with project management becoming a cultural priority within your organisation.

It is very frustrating if you get confusion and wasted time instead of efficiency, collaboration and communication. Here we look at why that happens - and how you can make sure it doesn't.


Only 35% of project managers in 2020 were satisfied with the systems in place in their organisation, because only 46% of organisations make project management a cultural priority. This means that 54% of organisations lack the ability to track their projects and tasks in real-time, and that 12% of all resources (time and money) are wasted due to major inefficiencies in project management.

2021 Report on Project Management


  1. There isn't enough buy-in: really commit to the decision.
  2. There's a stubbornness and resistance to change: be open-minded.
  3. The longer-term strategy is unclear: be clear with your team.
  4. There's a lack of uniformity in how the new software will be used: draw up some rules of engagement.
  5. The system isn't bespoke to your needs: pick one that you are confident will suit you.
  6. Or perhaps the system is too complex for your needs: be clear on the functionality that you need.

logo lineWhen searching for a project management system, it's important to scrutinise the options and plan how you will physically implement the change. How you go about it dictates whether or not it will be a success for your organisation. Be thorough in your search, justify it to your team and commit to it long-term.


Why You Must Get Your Reporting Right

In project management, it is important to focus on reporting: both the reports themselves, and the reporting processes within your organisation.

Reports are vital in driving engagement and collaboration in project delivery - and reporting well saves you time and improves the quality of your work.

Here are our four key reasons why you must get your reporting right.

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Reporting gives your work structure: it engages and motivates your team by giving them short-term goals.

Collaboration and Communication

Effective reporting mechanisms and reports better enable communication throughout your entire organisation, as well as direct collaboration with those you work with most closely.

Save time

Reporting can be laborious and time-consuming - especially if you are used to hammering away at an Excel spreadsheet, trying to build a report that looks somewhat readable.

Learning lessons

This is the area that is most easily forgotten! As a project manager, you need to be consistently learning lessons, assessing what is going well and what isn't, and making small adjustments to your projects and processes.

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Reporting effectively saves you time, money, risk and frustration - and it makes your work better. Spend a little time making sure you have the mechanisms in place to succeed with your reports.

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The 5 Views You Need For Your Reporting

Five views to make your reporting efforts work well for you.

A filtered view: Keep it simple

Some information is more important than other

A layered view: Share the right information

You don't want to have to create and distribute a separate report for every single scenario

An attractive view: Engage your team

Reading spreadsheet-based reports is tedious and tiring

A shareable view: Collaborate effectively

Everyone needs to receive the right information at the right time

An automated view: Digitise where possible

Manual report creation takes hours and costs so much in inefficiencies

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Proper reporting underpins successful project management.

The Importance of Risk Management within Project Management

A large part of effective project management is successfully managing any uncertainties that threaten the completion of your projects.

We've written a whole white paper on this - you can find The Complete Guide to Risk and Issue Management here.

This white paper explores the knowledge and mindset you need to respond to uncertainty effectively in your planning.

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Consider Sustainability in Every Project You Work On

Sustainability tracking is now as important in your long-term, business-as-usual planning as project management and risk management.

Our white paper on Sustainability is coming soon - but for now, you can read our short-form sustainability content.

In 2022, WeTrack is releasing sustainability tracking software to enable organisations in sport, events and other industries to set, track and meet crucial standards in sustainability.

This includes areas such as the environment, bids and hosting, major event legacy, CSR, equality and diversity, human rights, and more.

Organisations in sport and events are investing in sustainability tracking now.

Be the leading example in your industry.

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Project Management Software To Get Your Planning On Track

Give Your Project Management Stronger Foundations

WeTrack's project management software enables your organisation to work collaboratively in one platform.

In short, our project management software enables organisations to:


1. Work Easier.

Our intuitive, easy-to-use system gives you the tools and information you need without any unnecessary complexity: personal, detailed and global views let you see what you need to see.

2. Collaborate Better.

The best project management is collaborative, so we enable you to share updates, leave comments and manage notifications, keeping you on top of the work that relates to you.

3. Report Stronger.

Bespoke, automated reports engage your team and impress stakeholders, saving you time and improving information flow both internally and externally. 

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How WeTrack Helped to Deliver The Spectacular 2019 Cricket World Cup

Providing coherence to the organisation's 8,000+ tasks, integrating milestones and risks, and saving hundreds of hours in reporting.

The ICC Cricket World Cup takes place every 4 years, and is the pinnacle of the global cricket calendar.

The 2019 edition was hosted in England and Wales, and widely regarded as the most successful event of its type. The organising committee sold 888,000 tickets at 48 matches across 11 venues, and wanted to ensure every aspect of the event was planned and delivered to their exacting standards.

WeTrack began work one and a half years before the event, advising on a system structure to suit stakeholder requirements, training admin and regular users, and importing project plans and system data. We also provided an integrated risk and issue management system to boost understanding of how uncertainties threatened milestones - and supported the setup of regular automated reports, to save hundreds of manual hours each week.

The ambition was for CWC19 to have one single source of truth for all the actions, milestones, issues, risks and Tournament-time incidents, and WeTrack provided us with the best solution. The Project Management system enabled the CWC19 PMO function to provide functional areas with planning support, and provide a suite of reports for different stakeholders with the most current Tournament progress. The systems were very easy to use, easy to navigate, and quick to create bespoke reports, and the support the WeTrack team provided was first class.

Lizzy Bennett, Head of Programme Management at Cricket World Cup 2019


You can download this case study and take it away here.


How WeTrack Provides Project Management Software to Support The Work of The FIA

Underpinning departmental collaboration and reporting for one of the world's largest international sports federations.

The Federation Internationale de l'Automobile is the governing body of motorsport, bringing together 243 motoring and motor sport club members across 146 countries.

Founded in 1904, it brings coherent and sustainable governance to the sport, working towards its ultimate goal - to keep the world moving, safely and dynamically, and with some fantastic sporting spectacles along the way.

WeTrack provides one collaborative home for FIA's Sport Office operations and project management, incorporating both 'business as usual' planning and special projects. We worked with each department to import their project plans, providing tailored training and support.

We also provide an automated reporting centre for departments and senior management to view the information that really matters, with a custom weekly report forming the basis for departmental collaboration and making weekly meetings far more productive.

WeTrack's software developed better synergies between departments, and increased efficiency in project management.

Peter Bayer, Secretary General Sport at FIA


You can download this case study and take it away here.

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Want to learn more about project management for sport, events and venues? Check out our glossary of terms, with further resources that we have consulted in the making of this guide.

Arming yourself with a basic knowledge of project management principles and best practices will give you a solid grounding in project management.

Visit here to check out our project management glossary, and take your learnings into your organisation's project management for better, more efficient project delivery.

project management planning and scheduling


By WeTrack Commercial Director, Eric Solem

  • The increasing complexity of managing projects requires detailed planning

  • Make it easy for your project team to collaborate and update plans - user friendly interfaces and processes are important

  • Managing risk properly will help to deliver a successful project

WeTrack was built for this purpose - get in touch!

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