This is the Episode 2 of my new Video Series “Can We Talk About Your WordPress Projects?” AND, this is the 1st in a series that details all the repeatable processes and plans a WordPress Agency or individual provider should have defined as a basis for a good project management approach to WordPress website development projects. In this episode, we will be talking about why you or your agency needs a well-spelled-out Acceptance Management Plan.
Acceptance is *Almost* the Same Thing as Approval
Here’s how “acceptance” different from approval. If you define the criteria for acceptance (or approval) up front at the beginning of the project for all deliverables and the final project, that means that when it comes time for approval or acceptance then there’s a checklist to follow. The checklist contains all those criteria that you decided on with the client up front and if the deliverable or the project meets all that criteria, then it needs to be accepted. It HAS to be accepted and we have wording in the contract that states that. In other words, they might not “approve” of a little something but it doesn’t matter. Whether they “approve” of it or not, they have to accept it by the Acceptance Management Plan you all agreed to at the beginning.
Elements of a Good Acceptance Management Plan
First, a good Acceptance Management Plan specifies who is responsible for acceptance of the deliverables and who’s responsible for acceptance of the project. This should be spelled out in the proposal or contract. The second element is that it clearly spells out what the turnaround time is for acceptance and then it should spell out what happens if that turnaround time is not met. It should also define “rejection with cause” and “rejection without cause.
For example, if there was a requirement that the fonts and colors on the website all match the branding that’s in their printed materials, and you forgot to do that, and the client does not accept the deliverable because of that, that’s okay because that’s rejection with cause. On the other hand, if you did exactly as they asked but they’ve now decided they don’t really like that blue color, that’s rejection without cause and it can’t happen if you have a good acceptance management plan in your contract.
Defining the Deliverables
Now once you’ve got your standard plan written that you include in your contract or your proposal, then for each project, you need to update it with the list of all the deliverables that are going to require acceptance as well as the acceptance criteria for that deliverable.
You might not do ALL of that in the proposal. I use a two-step proposal process where the proposal is very high level with maybe one or two criteria for acceptance and then we drill down during the first phase and get all the detail and that’s where we actually define the rest of the criteria but its way before we do any development.
So that’s a quick little overview of acceptance management plans why you need one and how it’s going to help you going forward.
To Learn More:
Download a free sample Acceptance Management Plan(and other templates) here.
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