People often forget the importance of documenting project objectives in a rush to get things started. As an IT consultant your job is to fully understand the business situation and reach consensus on exactly what the project is expected to deliver. This can be achieved only when there is complete clarity on project objectives.

The need for documentation of objectives:

Documenting objectives should be given the maximum importance and should be the first thing you do when you start working on the project. Many consultants directly begin with the installation of servers or changing routers. This is often because clients want quick results. But providing the wrong solution is equivalent to not doing anything at all. That is why you should always begin with articulating the business problem and the potential solution.

Some consultants treat every problem as being generic, and they think that one solution will fit them all. For example, if the company wants an email platform and is not very big, then the consultant may think that Microsoft Windows Small Business Server is the answer. However, some companies might benefit more from having a hosted exchange solution. These things cannot be figured out unless you do a thorough job of documenting the objectives in terms of functionality, cost and performance.

How to go about it:

You need to do a lot of research and documentation if you want to provide the right answers. You should ask questions regarding the establishment of the original technical infrastructure and the changes that have been made since then. You should document the path that the company wants to take for its growth. Documenting these things help a lot, as you can use the information to make sure that the money being spent for the client ends up giving him/her a satisfying solution. All these aspects will help you develop accurate and achievable project objectives.

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