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CommonWay Project Management Methodology

Executive Summary

The CommonWay[1] is the Commonwealth's project management framework with a set of principles which emphasize different tools and methodologies to execute projects and deliver value. The Principle is simply: use industry standard best practices to support and promote the successful delivery of project benefits in the shortest time, with most value, and do so cost effectively in such a way to enable the business to delivers value to customers and stakeholders.

The CommonWay specifies modular builds which delivers products quickly, and value up front. It is structured simply as Origination, Initiation, Planning, Execution and Control, and Closure or expanded thusly:

-        Business Origination (Idea/Vision, ROI),

-        Business Initiation (Governance, Funding),

-        Collaborative Planning (Design, Procure)

-        Iterative & Incremental Execution & Control (Refine Design, Develop, and Implement),

-        [Collaborative] Closure (Go Live Stabilization; Benefit Realization)

In practice, the CommonWay processes overlap and interrelate and some processes are iterative, repeated and revised throughout the life of a project. 

CommonWay Standardization.

The Commonwealth favors any methodology that delivers working product to customers quickly, and additional supports Modular or Adaptive MethodologiesModular approaches to project delivery are based on iterative and incremental development, in which requirements and solutions evolve over time.

  • Modular or Adaptive Methodologies:
    • Flexible for small or large teams
    • Thrive in an environment where the requirements are changing
    • Very adaptable to almost any Agency culture or team location
    • Inclusive of, and welcoming of, business and customer interaction
    • Build, and test (Code and User Test) near simultaneously  
    • Deliver working products for Customer use in months, not years.

The Commonwealth has standardized on Agile Scrum methodology, but understands that there are others (SDLC, Rapid Application Development, Kanban, et. al.) which may be more adaptable to a procurement situation.

[The Commonwealth is dedicated to being on the forefront of emerging best practices; If submitter believes there is a better methodology way to achieve the Commonwealth’s requested business solution other than Agile. please specify within a 1-2 page explanation with your response. Submitter must still respond to the procurement as an Agile Solicitation. This explanation will not be scored but may help refine question and answer period or later discussions. ]

[1] Seasoned project managers acknowledge there are many ways to manage a project and many methodologies/tools/processes to manage the beginning, middle and end; at its core, any project management principle is a set of processes, tools, and templates used to effectively plan and manage the project. Even as methods change, the CommonWay principle will remain:


  Successful use of any development methodology requires dedicated commitment (in the form of Key Resources and a dedicated time investment) on the part of both agency and vendor, and careful tailoring of the methodology to the circumstances. 

 CommonWay Project Methodology Framework

The CommonWay is a framework set of principles which emphasize different tools and principles to do project management. It is structured upon the Project Management Institute's (PMI) Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK) but counts as part of it toolset the ITIL, Six Sigma, Lean, COBIT, SDLC and Agile methods and methodologies. It has been enhanced and structured to incorporate Commonwealth specific processes. The Commonway is not a waterfall or agile or rigid or complex. It is a framework evoking a set of tried and true principles of good project management which leads to successful projects.


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Legend: Agency Specific -      Standard -

 CommonWay primary purpose to establishing sound project management practices which:

 Improves overall project performance

  1. Increases projects delivered on-time and within or below budget
  2. Reduces project risk
  3. Enhances quality
  4. Improves inter and intra-project communication
  5. Establishes a consistent standard that everyone can follow
  6. Complements standard methodologies
  7. Ensure projects delivery the business benefits for which they were charted
  8. Emphasize business functionality based deliverables vs work-product deliverables.
  9. Utilizes a common project management terminology

  The purpose of this Wiki is to share knowledge and to support implementation of the methodology across the Commonwealth. 

Framework Comparison