As I wrote my first terms of reference

Becoming an IT project manager is quite difficult. And, I think, not only I had a problem with writing the first technical task. But let's get it in order. What knowledge and skills did I have before starting work?

At the moment, I am a student who has already completed the 3rd course of St. Petersburg State Electrotechnical University "LETI". I study at the Department of Automation and Control Processes (APU) in the field of information systems and technologies in business. In fact, a project manager is riveting me out of my head, stuffing knowledge of databases, non-implementation systems, programming (mainly JAVA and C ++ in the first courses), project management and control processes.

In the process of training in two disciplines, we were already given the opportunity to collect system requirements and write technical requirements for these requirements. But I think you can imagine how they were assembled and how they were checked. Considering that we (students) thought up all the limitations ourselves, the system’s functionality was very simple. Plus, we didn’t really worry about the financial benefits of a future product.

However, from these courses my skills were obtained with UML and in my head I kept the image of the structure of the technical task as a whole. Where to start, what to do and where to come. This helped me get started.

What is a company that took such a flaw and what tasks did it set for me?

In the 3rd year (or even earlier), I already began to understand that at the university they would give me sufficient skills to work, so that when I graduate I would be useful to the company that sheltered me. And therefore, two ways appeared for me to get enough experience to be able to carry the title of IT project manager.

So what are we talking about?

1. Start your startup.
2. He will get settled in the company now, working for free for experience, until I start to bring at least little benefit (slave internship).

The first option, despite the fact that there are a lot of ideas for a startup in my head, flew off right away, when an approximate price tag of how much it would cost me appeared. As a student you are very limited on a budget and it’s quite dangerous not to have experience or even an idea of ​​how it really works, investing in such a thing. Profitable, in any case, it is unlikely to become.

The second option turned out to be ideal for my university and the department as a whole.

The fact is that my department cooperates with the company "ALEE SOFTWARE" . Representatives of this company not only teach at our university, offering students practical skills and experience, but also are happy to train the "best" in their company. I turned to this company.

Of course, they gave me to start with the simplest of the tasks in the company. Purpose: to rewrite the web-client of the system for a new framework with the addition of new functionality.

How did my work begin?

Stage 1. First I was told about the system. What she represents, what problems she solves and how she works. It was something like a 4-hour lecture on the basics of an ERM system and product history. Next, they gave me a manual on the system, in which I figured out in more detail its current functionality. By the way, the system has two clients: web and desktop. Moreover, the functionality of the second was wider than the current functionality of the first. The documentation was available only on the desktop version, and even how the reference on working with the system for clients. Technical specifications for the system have been lost.

Stage 2. After, having read the manual and reread all the notes after the lectures on the system, I began to structure the knowledge gained. The goal of this step for me was to write some kind of document in which answers to the questions: “what?” (For the system), “why?” (It was created), “how?” (It works) were written. At this stage, I received something like a document presenting the current product. It described the goals of the client, how customers see this system and why the client should buy our system (its features). I think this is due to the fact that by nature I am a salesman and for me the main question is “why buy this?”. The document was similar to the “specification of requirements”, but different from the university term papers in which we wrote the specification. It was written in a simpler language and did not have clear sections. Concisely and the most basic. It seemed to me

Stage 3. UML diagrams, all as "according to the textbook". On the options diagram, I displayed users and what they would like to see in the system.
After, as I think, my errors went. I immediately went from the description of the functional, skipping the description of the data and how these functions work, to the description of the interfaces. Because of this, logical errors appeared during the description of the interfaces. Not understanding how the data is stored, I "fantasized" the interface for the web client, in which the client would receive the most inhibitory functionality of all that he saw.

Stage 4. Finalization. The last three stages lasted about 1.5 months, when the fourth stage lasted more than 2. I got everyone in the office.
First, I rewrote the functionality and finished the interfaces. Since this was my first project, I did not even have the slightest idea that it is important to describe all-all errors, all-all icons. It is necessary that the customer knows what each button in the program can do before it is written. I had to learn Gui-machine, a program created in my company where you can create dynamic interfaces. The program is useful, but I got used to it for a long time. After I corrected the logical errors, it was necessary to correct the language and structure of TK. At the university, they turned a blind eye, since the projects did not exceed 50 pages. But here is a serious task and I overestimated myself. The speech was too simple, the logic in the headlines was lost. I constantly jumped from the functions of one actor to the functions of another. In the screenshots of the interface, people were lost, ceasing to understand what was going on.

It's a little embarrassing to write this. I worked a lot on TK and put a lot of time and effort into it, but it turned out to be raw anyway. My job was accepted, but I was transferred to the marketing department.

What have I learned for myself?

1. I understood how to write TK so that it is readable.
2. I saw what you need to focus on.
3. The most important thing in TK is structure. You need to have it everywhere.

And most importantly, I realized that TK is not written for myself. TK is written for others.

I will be glad to hear your feylov and failures in work when you just started and how you coped with them.

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