The “Project Tracking Example – Manufacturing Tool Development” figure provides an example of what a real project looks like. It is being tracked monthly. Each point where the curve jogs is a monthly review point. This particular project started out with strong accomplishment of sales and marketing objectives followed by a period were technical progress was made. In the second most recent month of the project, progress was made on both fronts. In this example case the project tracking figure allowed the advisory and governing teams to quickly assess project strengths and weaknesses, and provide advice to the project leaders in a timely manner in a way that kept the project on track and balanced.
A similar situation happened for a technology project working on molecular modeling software that would speed all product development efforts. In this case the customers were R&D scientific personnel. As the “Project Tracking Example – Molecular Modeling Software Development” figure shows this particular project had a series of technical successes, but did not share or market their results to the rest of the organization. This was uncovered at one of the gate reviews. The team was told to halt its technical efforts until it could demonstrate that the organization’s personnel, as customers, would use the software once it was fully developed. The team successfully made this correction as shown in the strong vertical line in the center of the figure. After that the project team went on to better balance its technical and marketing efforts to ensure that the software both met the technical objectives and at the same time its use was embraced by the R&D organization as a whole.