ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

How to Measure the Success of a Project Workstream

Updated on July 1, 2015

Definition of Workstream

A workstream is one of multiple sub-teams within a single project whose objective is to reach resolutions to very specific issues that are needed in order to complete a project. The success of a project is dependent on the success of specific workstreams.

How Do You Measure the Success of a Project Workstream?

The criteria for measuring or evaluating the success of a project workstream varies from project to project. The criteria should be defined at the start of each project’s workstream effort with consensus amongst all participants and should be used as a blueprint for that workstream’s success. The participants should all be on the same page as to what the meaning of success is.

Workstreams are sub-teams who need to reach resolutions to very specific issues within a project
Workstreams are sub-teams who need to reach resolutions to very specific issues within a project | Source

Define success metrics

It's important for work-stream participants (aka team members) to all be on the same page in regards to the meaning of deliverables success, procedural success, and resource success.

  • Deliverables success – It is important to outline the tangible work products the workstream will deliver to accomplish its objectives. These objectives should be SMART (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, and Time-bound) where possible. Define the Key Success Factors that need to be fulfilled in order to realize the deliverables. The deliverables need to adhere to a specified quality and to ensure this, the project work stream needs to set up a quality assurance project plan.
  • Procedural success – The work-stream needs to delineate how the project will be organized, structured and managed, including timeliness, cost control, the project plan, and project management standards. It is important to state what is in scope and what is out of scope of work.
  • Resource success – The work-stream also needs to outline its resource utilization, specifically for staff and material resources. What is the set out resource capacity (% of hours available per month)? What is the required level of skills and experience amongst work-stream staff? What is the overtime rate?

How to evaluating the defined success criteria

Traditionally, project management literature dealing with defining success of project workstreams was usually limited to meeting cost, schedule, and scope objectives - was the project finished within budget, on time, and according to the specifications? This however only provides part of the picture. It does not address the other variables from which lessons can be learned for future workstreams. Just because a project came in on time and budget does not mean it is a success. The deliverables may be of poor quality, and there may be dozens of outstanding issues. A much broader view is required.

Final stage of a project workstream

As a project workstream comes to an end, the success metrics that were defined at the start should be used as a benchmark for evaluating the success of the project.

Good questions to ask at the end of a project are:

  • Did the project workstream deliver the outlined deliverables according to schedule, or were they delivered behind or ahead of schedule?
  • How did the project workstream perform against the budget?
  • Did the project workstream spend more or less than was estimated for its resource allocation?
  • Did the delivery quality meet specified measurements?

Successes and failures should be evaluated and documented as ‘lessons learned’ in order to be able to repeat successes during future projects and to learn from shortcomings. As a project workstream’s evaluation is completed, the participants should be able to define “how successful were the project workstreams?”


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment
    • profile image

      sathis kumar 

      5 years ago

      Each time each project

    • aesta1 profile image

      Mary Norton 

      5 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      Each time, we finish a project, we always write down lessons learned in the reports. Often, when we read reports, these are the key points we keep in mind.

    • Global-Chica profile imageAUTHOR


      8 years ago from New York, NY

      Thanks so much, tsmog. You're right, this can apply to any industry and that's the beauty of it. And 'lessons learned' are important in any project so one can learn from both successes and failures and apply it to future projects. Thank you for your valuable comment.

    • tsmog profile image

      Tim Mitchell 

      8 years ago from Escondido, CA

      I agree on the 'lessons learned' statement. Very powerful and agreeing with you the emphasis should be placed on learned. I work in the automotive tire/repair industry. We call it workflow in the shop environment. Great job of explaining this theory and its high points. What is cool about the discussion you presented is it can be used with any business or industry. From the world of entertainment to the sandwich shop to the USMC 1st FSSG moving out on a mission in the south pacific somewhere to a presidential election.


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
    ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)