Most of us know – especially those of us in the project management world – that a solid PM practice that is truly running smoothly in an organization can bring great benefits to the company, the employees and, of course, the project customers. However, not everyone sees it and sometimes executives want to deny that this is the case…choosing to fund different areas of the organization with the limited budget available because they just don’t see the benefit.
In these cases, what the PM practices are left with is struggle to survive, a lack of ability to show a consistent “face” of PM to the organization and the clients they serve on projects, and the reliance on more luck that best practices to bring ongoing success to the projects they manage. Not good. So what we always need to do is tout the pluses of project management and why the funding of a solid PM infrastructure is a good thing…not a frivolous endeavor.
Therefore, let’s look at some of the real pluses to the organization of having a professional project management infrastructure and practice in place.
Customers realize the advantage
Since project management is such a customer-oriented undertaking, I like to focus on that area first. Project management gains advantages for their organization by working together with the customer and by accommodating their needs and requirements. Detailed planning phases enable for thorough understanding of customer requirements. This allows the company to fully understand the customer’s true needs and meet those needs allowing for a productive end user solution that can very positively affect customer satisfaction.
Products get to the consumer faster
The advantage permits the business to deliver products or services more efficiently than the competitors and the business is able to react more favorably to market demands. The continued process of using project management best practices allows for a higher degree of project successes thus increasing the competitive advantage that the project management organization brings to the company.
Best practices reduce overall delivery costs
Project management can allow an organization to provide products and services more cheaply by following a structured and formalized project methodology and by ensuring that excessive costs are not spent without due consideration. Consistent, repeatable practices that a sound project management methodology allows an organization helps to reduce overall costs.
Higher quality deliverables are produced
Project management builds quality into the products or services right from the start, ensuring that the right things are developed at the right specification. A structured and mature project management process includes structured testing phases and quality control which helps to ensure quality deliverables are provided to the customer.
Better focus on the end solution
The projects will be focused more on the client needs and products, instead of having a solution that does not deliver the expected returns. A focused and structured project management practice allows a company to consistently serve their customers well and provide a high quality product.
The best functioning organizations are ensuring that the projects that are happening in the company are in line with their overall goals and mission of the organization. An established, documented and structured project management practice can help ensure that end goal. Plus, by creating and funding a real PM practice, we know that we can consistently produce similar results – thus replicating project successes and reducing project failures. Budgets are limited, I realize, but funding the PM infrastructure…especially in larger organizations…is a necessity, not a luxury.