Expert’s Advice on Project Management and Workplace Productivity

Expert’s Advice on Project Management and Workplace Productivity

It’s always true that the customer wants the best products and services. Employees want better salaries. Executives want growth. So everyone wants to grow.

But the truth is, it’s hard to deliver consistently positive results in an uncertain and continually shifting global marketplace.

Organizations that invest in SaaS project management spend 13 times less money because their strategic initiatives are completed more successfully.

We all know that proper management of projects is essential for any organization’s success, yet the message is not being realized.

We reviewed this year’s Pulse of the Profession data, we were hoping to see improvement over last year’s results. Instead, we saw declines in many of the success factors we track. Even more concerning, the percentage of projects meeting their goals—which had been flat for the past four years—took a significant dip”.

Mark A. Langley, PMI President, and CEO

To examine this situation further, Mark further surveyed executive leaders and PMO directors as part of this year’s Pulse research and found that, although many individuals are beginning to sharpen their focus on managing projects as a strategic driver, their organizations aren’t always in step.

Let’s have a discussion on how you can improve your business results;

1. Look beyond technical skills:

While technical skills are core to project and program management, they’re simply not enough in today’s competitive global economy, which is growing quickly, but with less predictability.

The most successful organizations seek added skills in leadership and business competencies that support and sustain long-range strategic objectives.

When organizations focus on all skill sets, 40% more of their projects meet goals and original business intent.

Projects Goal

(Source – pmi.org)

Organizations can help develop project and program managers who are versatile, experienced, and skilled. Yet less than one in three companies, currently prioritize the development of technical, leadership, or business skills. Only 25% consider all three skills a priority.

Technical, Leadership, and Business Skills

(Source – pmi.org)

2) Drive Success With Executive Sponsors:

With actively engaged executive sponsors, organizations can bridge the communication gap between influencers and implementers to significantly increase collaboration, boost project success rates, and reduce risk.

In addition to tracking the annual trends in project management, I’ve gathered the perspectives of executive leaders and PMO directors on why there is a lack of higher project success rates.

PMO Directors

(Source – pmi.org)

PMI’s report draws on a global survey of 2,428 project management practitioners, 192 senior executives, and 282 PMO directors from a range of industries, and interviews with 8 corporate leaders and 10 PMO directors and directors of project management.

When projects aren’t managed well, project resources continue to be wasted vigourously.

Another PMI report says, US$122 million wasted for every US$1 billion invested due to poor project performance, a 12% increase over last year.

There’s a lot more than you have to pay attention to as an organization and therefore the projects have to do the same.”

Norm Fjeldheim | Senior Vice President and CIO Qualcomm

3) Understanding the importance of PMO:

PM research says, over half of the organizations fully understand the value of project management and less than two in five places a high priority on creating a culture that recognizes its importance as a key to better project performance.

Organizations that focus on effective project management have around 71% of their projects meeting original goals and business intent.

Projects Meeting

(Source – pmi.org)

Project management has been one of the linchpins of our turnaround over the last couple of years. The discipline has made our product and technology deployments faster yet less impactful to customers.

– Peter Stern | Executive Vice President, Chief Product, and Strategy Officer Time Warner Cable

Over the years, analysis of the Pulse data shows that high-performing organizations have implemented proven project, program, and portfolio management practices.

As a result, their projects meet original goals two-and-a-half times more often (89% Vs. 34%) and spend 13 times less money.

Without a doubt, proper management of projects drives more success, lowers the risk, and increases the chance of success for delivering the economic value of the project.”

Bill Seliger| PMP Director

Project Management

(Source – pmi.org)

The more project management expertise we have, the less likelihood of complications with the client, overruns and cost issues.

Sudhakar Kesavan | Chairman and CEO ICF International, Inc.

Project outcomes are significantly better in organizations that invest in ongoing PM training, offer a defined career path to those engaged in project or program management.

Project Management Training

(Source – lh6.googleusercontent.com)

Further perceptual gaps exist around the benefits realized to improve risk identification and mitigation, success with complex projects, customer satisfaction, and success with organizational change.

The below statistics shows an overview of the benefits of project management;

Benefits of Project Management

(Source – pmi.org)

4) Value your Project Managers:

With the ongoing PM challenges, the good news is that the executives are actively building PMOs & the awareness around efficient project tracking and understanding its potential to deliver better business results.

Good project managers are highly valued, whether they are in IT or in engineering. If they are effective at being able to get the job done, then they are viewed very positively within the organization and in demand.”

Norm Fjeldheim | Senior Vice President and CIO Qualcomm

Project Managers have the privilege of working with various teams across the organization. This provides them with a much-needed exposure of how different teams work.

Thus enabling them to strategically align teams with business objectives that are to be delivered by the project.

Here are some FAQs and their respective answers on Project Management. Have a look at them-

Q1. Does your organization have a PMO (Project Management Office)?

Project Management Office

(Source – pmi.org)

Q2. To what extent does your organization use standardized PM practices?

PM practices

(Source – pmi.org)

Q3. Do you believe that your organization fully understands the value of project management?

Value of Project Management

(Source – pmi.org)

Q4. How would you characterize the [project/program/portfolio] management maturity of your organization?

Management Maturity

(Source – pmi.org)

Q5. How would you characterize the alignment of the enterprise-wide PMO to the strategy of your organization?

PMO

(Source – pmi.org)

Q6. How would you rate your organization’s success in performing the following activities over the last three years?

Performance

(Source – pmi.org)

Conclusion:

Often businesses without a basic PM idea struggle to produce PM reports and end up using excel “which is highly prone to errors”.

Although the above recommendations are solid, true benefits cannot be realized unless robust systems and processes are implemented to generate maximum business value from your projects.

Growing businesses benefit from a project management software  that provides vital project information in real time such as project costs, progress, status, profitability, resource utilization and productivity, budget performance and customer satisfaction.

Learn more here- A brief talk about Agile Project Management

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