No matter what the job is at hand, great tools in the hands of a trained professional will lead to exceptional results. But what about providing great tools to an untrained person? Would you expect comparable results? The answer is a resounding NO! If this is true, then why do some people believe that having good project management software tools will make them good project managers and ultimately lead to successful projects? The missing variable in this equation is a sound project management methodology to guide them through the planning and control process. Engraining a sound project management methodology in your organization, supported by a suite of great tools, is the first step towards getting great project results.
Each year, companies execute projects for the purpose of improving their bottom-line and expanding their competitive advantage. The difference between success and failure often depends on how committed organizations are in utilizing project management to monitor and control schedule delays. Schedule delays are the villain in project management and are the biggest cause of budget overruns, missed deadlines, and poor quality. During good economic times, investing in project management is financially feasible and acceptable by most companies. However, during bad economic times, project management is considered an overhead cost and the tendency is to downsize. This paper discusses the importance of investing in project management to mitigate the impact of schedule delays in good and more importantly during bad economic times.
Implementing a formalized project management process in an organization that does not have a history of using a structured approach to project planning and control can present significant challenges. A phased approach to implementation is a crucial element of a successful implementation strategy because it helps overcome resistance to change, allows lessons learned in early phases to be incorporated in the systems installed in later phases, and ensures that a solid foundation of project-level data is available prior to rolling-up enterprise-level information.
Companies today increasingly recognize that, with respect to project management, they must advance beyond the ability to create occasional success stories through the exertion of heroic effort. They know that a core element of their overall success is driven by the ability to consistently bring their entire portfolio of projects to successful completion: on-time, within budget, and per-specification. In addition, they know that if they can cost-effectively accelerate the delivery of their new products and services (without sacrificing quality in the process) they can create a strategic advantage over their competitors.