Analysis of challenges in project management
At the mention of the term project management, many critics will most likely oppose such ideologies with the strongest terms possible. To them, this is a definition of a misguided yet captivating fantasy that can only reside in the minds of immature business individuals. Surprisingly, most of the critics are not qualified scholarly authors; thus their criticism is, to a great extent, based on fallacious ideologies, in addition to, denigrated assertions. This paper starts by looking at the ideologies accorded in line with negation of utilization of project management during project development undertakings. Each of these arguments is negated with ample evidence in support of the fact that, project management is the best approach while carrying out project development especially one that inclines towards information system.
Logically speaking, it would sound absurd to work on a project without proper project especially at this time and age of technology boom. This does not mean overreliance on tools, software or other technical aspects of project management since they are, like their name suggest, tools while project managers and their subordinates provide the technical know-how that is a prerequisite for project fruition.
Also, another argument suggests that, while project managers are expected to do everything they can to finish the project on time; there are instances when the project specifics change. However, following such changes, it would be anticipated that there would be some changes in the deadline of submission of the project. However, in most cases, the deadline is neither changed and so is the budgeted figure expected to change either. Project managers lacking astute negotiation skills bring about this. This leads to the project’s lead-time falling back thus as the deadline of submission closes in, there is an increasing need to employ more subordinate staff members especially to assist in coding, documentation and debugging in the case of an IT/ IS related project (Meshalkin, Stoyanova & Dli, 2012).
However, there is no evidence of a tangible approach that has been set apart from project management, which would counter such challenges. On the contrary, project management creates a platform where there is the utilization of a project’s submission grace period. Within this period, it is anticipated that, in the event that a project will not be completed on time, there may be an extension of the deadline for submission without necessarily affecting launch of the new product in the market (Kerzner, 2009; Raymond & Bergeron, 2008). There may be a negative side for projects that get too late to launch. For example, Microsoft Corp., while developing Windows® Vista TM, had a rough time selling the product since it delayed beyond customer expectation leading to poor sales volume in as much as the operating system’s security platform was arguably superior. This nevertheless does not water down the assertion that project management is a failure. To some, there is an inclination towards the findings that slightly over 21 % of IT project end up in failure due to poor project management, neglecting project management tools altogether in the assumption that they are a failure as some argue, is a misconception that would exacerbate the current situation (Ali, Anbari & Money, 2008).
There is an assumption that project management tools, if they were effective, would curtail the common phenomenon of the need for overtime (Ford & Bhargav, 2006). It is argued that due to failure of the project management platform, a need for compulsory extra working hours coupled with an increase in expenditure on hiring other programmers to join in the project is created. However, despite these fervid acclamations, none of these knockers seems to underscore the necessity for time management during project undertaking. To them, a project ought to be handled haphazardly as long as it gets to its destination, a relatively outdated procedure per se (Raymond & Bergeron, 2008).
The problem with carrying out a project without any laid down benchmarks, targets, timeframe, milestone, checks and balances/ control systems, monitoring and evaluation procedures, it would be quite hard to know the progress of a project, how much has been done, and how much remains to be done and within what timeframe (Kerzner, 2009).
Take a scenario where, due to delays at some point in the project, or due to incomplete/ inconclusive scope development, there is likelihood that more resources will be required. In this case, there is an anticipated overhead from the set target. It is likely that overheads from cost brought about by the hiring process, project undertaking, and change management will affect the end result. However, change is inevitable and so is the need for hiring. The challenge comes when there is a high rate of turnover from subordinate or senior staff in the project management structure. This yields higher costs due to rehiring and training new staff members, in addition to, delays in some sectors affected by these changes. Such overheads are expected although they are never quite budgeted for in the initial budget (Kerzner, 2009).
While this may be deemed as a challenge, on the other hand, it is a blessing in disguise because of the level of autonomy in project undertaking. The project managers and the project team do not have to keep worrying about management interference during the undertaking as well as the project manager acting as the advocate for their performance or any other issue that may be needed (Raymond & Bergeron, 2008). This autonomy helps the project team members to develop a synthesized interpersonal skill with fellow development members who share almost infallible product development techniques, ones that they can apply in future endeavors. However, having no predefined project management platform would mean that individuals are not necessarily demanded to work within an enclosed setting but rather they can even work from home as long as they deliver what is necessary to the team.
There is also a likelihood of individual project managers to adopt a given project management technique obsessively such that they neglect comparison with other novel approaches that can be faster as well as effective in managing the project (Kerzner, 2009). Although this might prove sound in the long run, comparison of available options based on the scope of the project is imperative to sound provisions.
There are chances that individuals may develop burnouts during project undertaking due to strict delivery timeframes (Kerzner, 2009). Nevertheless, proper project management would also create time for resting for all team members, with time for celebration upon overcoming vital milestones provided in the project management planning (Kerzner, 2009; Meshalkin, Stoyanova & Dli, 2012). Such times, unlike in other models demanding continuous work schedules based on an individual’s settings, are refreshing, bringing the team spirit up to par.
It is also convenient to note that, while traditional project undertaking were and continue to be marred by challenges with decision, project management, on the other hand, provides an opportunity for decision-making support (Raymond & Bergeron, 2008). This means that there is better decision-making framework, as well as value creation for other people’s ideologies, a prerequisite for individual team-members owning the project and adding more effort from such affirmations.
A robust project management approach will also carry out a comprehensive risk analysis and mitigation approaches such that there is minimization of potential shortfalls in the undertaking (Ford & Bhargav, 2006). This makes management of risks easier as well as proactively addressing such risks as they occur.
In conclusion, it is evident that while earlier posits by critics show some truth to some extent, it is nevertheless vital to note that the presentation of such truths is more idiosyncratic rather than objective in their analysis and critique. Therefore, this shows challenges in project management in a hilariously foolhardy manner. From the discussion, it is clear that project management is the best approach to use in project undertaking. There are a myriad of evidences supporting this assertion with high success rates achieved with novel project management approaches in application. The misalignments observed is partly as a result of weaknesses in tools in use while, on the other hand, reliance on frail humanity to deliver a perfect product; a rather absurd expectation.
Ali, A. S. B., Anbari, F. T., & Money, W. H. (2008). Impact of organizational and project factors on acceptance and usage of project management software and perceived project success. Project Management Journal, 39(2), 5-33. Retrieved from http://search.proquest.com/business/docview/218757170/abstract?source=fedsrch&accountid=45049
Ford, D. N., &Bhargav, S. (2006). Project management quality and the value of flexible strategies. Engineering, Construction and Architectural Management, 13(3), 275-289. Retrieved from http://search.proquest.com/business/docview/218648929/fulltext?accountid=45049
Kerzner, H. (2009). Project management: A systems approach to planning, scheduling and control. (10th ed). John Wiley & Sons, Inc.: Hoboken, New Jersey.
Meshalkin, V., Stoyanova, O., & Dli, M. 2012. Project management in the nanotechnology industry: Specifics and possibilities of taking them inito account. Theoretical Foundations of Chemical Engineering, 46(1), 50-54. Retrieved from http://ehis.ebscohost.com/ehost/detail?sid=7a8b0f87-3dc4-4a5d-84ef-d89b7866bb7b%40sessionmgr104&vid=1&hid=121&bdata=JnNpdGU9ZWhvc3QtbGl2ZQ%3d%3d#db=aph&AN=71747983
Raymond, L., & Bergeron, F. (2008). Project management information systems: An empirical study of their impact on project managers and project success. International Journal of Project Management, 26(2), 213-220. Retrieved from http://ehis.ebscohost.com/ehost/detail?sid=46854e1b-46c6-4769-acd7-fd5605ed1710%40sessionmgr4vid=1&hid=5&bdata=jnNpdGU9ZWhvc3QtbGl2ZQ%3d%3d#db=bth&AN=29376792