Time is another vital consideration in technology projects because a tech solution that arrives too late — e.g., the day after a vital election — can have dire consequences. A party should consider the following before the implementation of a tech-based project.
- The length of time it will realistically take to purchase, install, configure, modify, troubleshoot and train staff for a new tech project. Extra time should be taken into account to accommodate unforeseen delays.
- The overall project timeline — that is, what the party will need to accomplish in the short-, medium- and long terms. A party should consider key milestones, such as party meetings and elections, that will influence project timing and possibly shift party priorities.
- Time for testing and evaluating the tool. Rolling out a new technology before properly testing it can be an expensive mistake. This case study looks at two projects, Narwal and ORCA, from the U.S. 2012 presidential election: one tool was tested and ready for the strain of election day and the other was not.