It seems like a pretty basic question. But we’ve learned through experience that classifying our work into different categories allows us to plan our time more efficiently and document what we do resulting in greater transparency.
So, what is work? Work is defined as anything that expends human resources. In IT, we divide the work we do into two different categories – baseline and projects. Baseline describes day-to-day tasks that are necessary to provide IT services. Examples include incident resolution, service requests, minor updates and bug fixes, maintenance, and meetings. Baseline is any work that is not considered a project.
So, what is a project? We define a project as a temporary endeavor designed to produce a unique product, service or result with a defined beginning and end. We further refine the definition to include those endeavors that will require more than 16 hours of personnel time.
Projects can be further broken down into two categories – business projects and core projects. Business projects are those that are proposed by our external customers to meet a specific business need or function. Core projects are those that are required to fulfill the mission of the department. Think of it as those things we have to do to “keep the lights on.” A project is considered a core project if any of the following questions are affirmed:
- Is the project is required to fulfill IT regulatory or compliance risk mitigation expectations?
- Is the project required to keep a core technology or core service up to date?
- Is the project required to achieve DoIT’s strategic plan?
- Is the project required to maintain an acceptable service level for a service that DoIT is committed to offering?
By categorizing work in this way, our department can work more efficiently and with greater transparency than ever before.