Acquiring a project is one thing; executing it successfully is different. It boils down to the organizations’ efficiency in project management and strategically implementing the project contingency plan to deal with project crises. Project management is crucial for organizations to achieve business objectives within available resources and budgets. Business value also increases as organizations get better at project management strategies. Unfortunately, there are millions of companies that invest heavily in acquiring the project but fail to justify it due to poor planning, fragmented team, and complicated process. The risks for project failure further increase with increased regulations, globalization, technology evolution, and stakeholders’ higher expectations.
These issues can be resolved by deeply understanding project management challenges and learning how to contribute to the improvement of project management with the right project management software. This article highlights potential challenges underlying project management and tools that could help mitigate these problems.
Table of content:
- Top Reasons for Project Failure
- Accomplishing The Improvement of Project Management
Top Reasons for Project Failure
1. Lack of Resource Planning
Resource planning includes identifying and allocating various types of resources for the successful completion of a project. Resources could be finances, technology stack, equipment, etc. A project manager’s efficiency in resource planning and allocation can enhance productivity, project performance, and profitability. Unable to forecast, plan, and fund these resources could lead to project failure.
2. Communication Gap
People involved in the successful completion of a project, includes clients, stakeholders, project manager, team members, etc. Any miscommunication between them can be catastrophic for the entire project. There are many reasons for communication gaps like loosely coupled communication channels, inability to track communication history, lack of stakeholder engagement, fragmented team, etc.
3. Unrealistic Expectations And Scope
Due to the fear of losing clients, sometimes project managers agree to the requirements beyond the project scope. Without a thorough estimation of project requirements, resources, and budget, it is easy to fall prey to unrealistic expectations. Project managers working with unrealistic expectations are prone to frequent changes leading to delays and increased project costs.
4. Lack of Risk Management
Projects are surrounded by many uncertainties or risks. Some of these risks are common, and project managers use their expertise to mitigate them. Organizations that do not identify these risks and do not have contingency plans to counteract them can fail in their project.
5. Lack of Stakeholders’ Involvement
It is a project manager’s job not only to identify the best stakeholders for the project but also to involve them in the project right through the beginning. Project leaders that rarely communicate with stakeholders and do not encourage stakeholders’ active participation in the project could lead to project failure.
6. Poor Project Monitoring
If project leaders do not have a process or system to continuously monitor the performance; it is more likely that the project will fail. Project monitoring is an important part of project management and helps keep the project on track.
Accomplishing The Improvement of Project Management
Let’s dive into the 7 tips that a business should follow for the improvement of their project management processes:
1. Resource Planning And Management Tools
First of all, resource planning and management tools give clear visibility to resources and their allocation. It minimizes resource redundancy and assists in completing the project on time. It enables users to view the project on a microscopic level and identify the errors before it goes out of control. Some advanced resource planning and management tools interlaced with AI capabilities automatically plan resources and take the guesswork out of the resources.
2. Collaboration Tools
Project collaboration tools can help project managers to fill the communication gap and increase the project success ratio. It centralizes the entire communication and ensures that there is no crack or leak in the communication channels. It supports the project team in collaborating on project tasks, dependencies, timelines, and approvals. There are various tools available for effective collaboration and communication, such as Trello, Monday.com, Zoom, Slack, GoToMeeting, etc. These collaboration tools enable users to establish transparent and consistent communication from start to finish.
3. Work Breakdown Tools
Project managers can break down the project into smaller tasks and track them individually through work breakdown tools. It helps them understand the project’s intricacies and other details on a much granular level. It gives them better clarity on the project and can draw a clear line between realistic and unrealistic expectations. Besides, that team can find it easy to manage and complete a project when it is broken down into smaller tasks.
4. Kanban Boards
Kanban boards are the most popular tools among project managers and team members. The boards are like virtual sticky notes that have all the details about the project, such as description, deadlines, and current status of the work (work requested, in-progress work, work done). Through Kanban, each member of the team can see the overall progress of the task and team members’ individual workload. It reduces the confusion over the project work and helps team members to complete tasks at a given time.
5. Risk Management Tools
Experienced project managers are well aware of the possible risks in the project and take action in advance to mitigate those risks. Besides taking all precautions, the project managers can face unexpected events or risks. Various risks associated with the project are high costs, scope creep, schedule risk, change of requirements, operational risk, legal risk, etc. Project managers identify, assess, and manage risks efficiently to respond quickly. Risk management tools are very handy in managing these risks. It helps to record the possible risks the team can expect and countermeasures to deal with them. These tools help prioritize the risks and assign them to the responsible person.
6. Issue Tracking Tools
Issue tracking software enables project managers to register, organize, and manage issues discovered during project management. The tool routes issues to the responsible person and even allows adding notes or status about the issue. Users can even create a ticket number which makes searching and tracking issues easier. With real-time visibility through dashboards, issue tracking software streamlines the issue management process.
7. Cost management tools
Project managers document and track all the expenses incurred during the project execution. It allows them to stay vigilant on the expenses and minimizes the chance of overrunning the budget. Cost management in the project assists in forecasting future budgets and ensuring the fund is utilized properly. Manually tracking all the projects can cost a lot since all the expenses are recorded at various places and in various formats. Cost management tools can be useful in recording and managing all the expenses from one place. It gives better accountability to the project as the accountants and project managers have access to a single system with the same data set. Some advanced cost management tools with machine learning capabilities help to monitor the cost continuously and highlight unusual spending.
These tools can be either accessed as a standalone tool or integrated with the project management software. Depending on the project size and budget, the project manager can choose these tools.
Managing projects has become challenging in the ever-changing and dynamic world. It requires minute-to-minute monitoring of project progress and quickly responding to the project needs. For better visibility and managing it successfully, it demands synergy among people, resources, and processes involved in it. Organizations lacking in any one of these areas will face problems in executing the projects efficiently. Project managers anticipating smooth project completion can avoid this disaster by enhancing their project management skills while focusing on the improvement of project management with the right tools.
Jason Adams is a content writer for GoodFirms (a leading Software research company). A voracious reader, an avid researcher, a logophile, and a tech geek, he loves to write about the latest technologies shaping the world. He often articulates the very nuances of the tech world in his blogs. In his free time, he loves to watch movies and analyze global stock markets.