3 Ways Technology Will Optimize Project Management

It seems that there is always a newer, more progressive way to perfect project management (PM) operations.

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Daily headlines inundate us with new age philosophies like, “Cloud Software to Reshape Project ManagementThe Top 5 Apps of 2015 to Help PM Capabilities” and Robots as Project Managers down to “Top 10 Project Management Certifications.”

With all this information, how can we differentiate what technologies are useful to the field of project management and what’s just a passing fad? The EPS team decided that the best way to decide what technologies matter is to first identify what aspects of project management have timeless value.

Below are three important project management findings and how new technology can benefit, but not replace each:

  1. Building Strong Company Culture

Without a strong identity, a firm’s project managers can easily get lost in the shuffle amongst various stakeholders present within a project. A Price Water House Coopers (PWC) survey of over 10,000 projects found that 60% of Project Management Offices (PMO) claim that the organizational culture is not supportive of the PMO.

The greatest reason for project failure? 

‘Most PMO’s do not ensure that all projects they implement align with the client organization’s corporate strategy’ says PWC.

So, how can firms like EPS use modern PM applications to boost the presence of a company’s culture?

Enabling a strong sense of culture within the PMO allows the project management team to communicate key objectives to the rest of the project team. Having stable project prioritization systems that can align projects with over-arching corporate strategies and business objectives are crucial to project success. A great application is the Project Culture Initiative, a proprietary change management process delivered by PMI institute. To learn more see here.

 

  1. De-Cluttering Communication

There is no one magic way to streamline communication. That’s why there are hundreds, even thousands of applications that claim to be the ultimate solution to your project communication woes. According to the PWC study referenced above, 71% of all projects are either “challenged” (due to late delivery, being over-budget, or delivering less than required features), or in the worst case, “failed”. This is proof that even using expensive and up to date applications don’t always work.

But where do all these issues come from?

Poor communication techniques. Every good project manager knows it’s crucial to be preventative rather than reactive when executing a project.

The EPS team has created our own version of a communication technology assessment to help determine when to use technology and when to use good old-fashioned communication.

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Other factors to include are scope of project, industry, organizational constraints, location of the project team and confidentiality of information.

We hope this helps!

 

  1. Remote Capabilities

With the increased globalization of work, project management firms find themselves faced with viable opportunities thousands of kilometres away. This makes outlandish, futuristic ideas like holographic meetings somewhat plausible in the near future.

While it is possible to execute certain aspects of a project remotely, we still believe in-person contact is, and will always be the best approach for project managers. The PMO has to be conscious of the constraints of working remotely. Below are some pros and cons handling projects remotely with technological factors involved:

  1. Cost Savings
    • No need to factor in daily travel costs and instead plan for initial site visits and other visits if necessary
    • A lean project team – By honing on the skills of the core PMO office, each project can be executed with less ‘hands on deck’ without reducing the quality of services
  2. Time
    • Minimal to no travel time for the PM team will reduce schedule impediments
    • Factoring in time differences between location of the project and the PMO can affect the schedules of the client and the project manager
  1. Face-to-Face Contact
    • There is nothing like face to face contact with a client – utilizing telecommunication from one to one calls, conference calls to Skype will help ease the gap between the PMO and the client

The team at EPS is delighted to see all the innovation occurring within the realm of project management. Our team is continually testing new technologies to discover what works for project managers and what doesn’t. One key truth amongst all applications? There are no mistakes only process. If technologists continue to build upon and improve these programs, the future of project management can only be brighter.

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