Consider this scenario:
You’re in an important meeting. Your agency has just received funding for a large technology project, but the project manager has just been laid off because of a budgetary shortfall. The chief executive (e.g., police chief, sheriff, communications center manager) turns to you and says, “You’ve always done a great job managing different assignments. I need you to run with this mission-critical, high-visibility, important project….We’ve had some big project failures in the past, but I know you’ll do a great job.” - The Accidental Project Manager, Ben Krauss for SEARCH Group, Inc., p. 1, 2012)
Sound familiar? You’re not alone. This scenario was depicted in The Accidental Project Manager, one of six new Issue Briefs published by the COPS Office. Developed by SEARCH Group, Inc., the Issue Brief series is designed to provide public safety practitioners (e.g., police, fire, EMS, communications specialists) with overviews of useful tools and techniques for planning, implementing, and maintaining technology projects. They can enhance communication with your technology project team by laying out cautions and considerations. These Issue Briefs are available for download and printed copies are available through the COPS Office Response Center:1
Issue Brief No.7: Developing Interoperability Standard Operating Procedures
Benefits of using SOP models in interoperable communication technology projects.
Issue Brief No. 8: The Accidental Project Manager
Handling the reality of being a public safety practitioner with operational expertise and limited information technology expertise.
Issue Brief No. 9: An Introduction to Long Term Evolution (LTE)
Advantages and limitations of LTE (commonly referred to as 4G—or next generation wireless communications) as the new standard for public safety broadband.
Issue Brief No. 10: Improving Life Cycle Management Through IT Service Management
How life cycle management can impact service quality, reliability, and operational efficiency, and costs.
Issue Brief No. 11: Free Project Management Tools
How free project management tools can support capital and noncapital public safety projects.
Issue Brief No. 12: Using Social Media to Market and Promote Public Safety Projects
How free social media tools can support public safety project communication.
Debra R. Cohen McCullough, Ph.D.
1Past Issue Briefs: