Modern projects management system takes place within micro-projects of related and interlinked processes; they follow multi-project management within an organization. The project management approach gives room to the execution of multiple important activities (projects) simultaneously without conflicts of interest and each enjoying from the intensive cross-functional cooperation. Resources are scarce; thus, they need to be managed effectively, when implementing a multi-project organization, it offers a channel of flexibility in resource allocation, the flexibly assists in allocating resources effectively and reducing any chance of waste or delay in completion of a project for resources purposes.
Project management system facilitates communication within the project factor that facilitates the invention and innovation of better resource management systems. In an effective multi-project in an organization, each stakeholder has a role to play in fulfilling the final obligation of the project. Neither role should be seen as inferior to the other however all tasks should be seen as equal. The main players are the following.
Project leaders (project managers)
Project leaders are mandated with the task of ensuring that a project is run effectively and is completed within the set period. When making objectives of a project, managers should ensure that they not only have the goals and objectives set but should be pioneers of policies to see their attainment. In case management fails to fulfil its leadership role, then the project is likely to fail. Interlink and collaboration of several micro-projects call for the integration of management and their skills so as micro-project leaders can enjoy from intellectualism from the other.
Department heads (resource managers)
Resources are limited and need to be effectively be managed, department leaders have the role of manning their physical and human resources so as each project benefit an optimal allocation of resources. As a project unfolds, the managers are responsible for periodical controls and monitoring to ensure that the project is on track with the set goals and objectives.
Management (program directors)
They are the top management mandated with the task of ensuring that entire firms objectives have been fulfilled the fulfilment of the entire firm’s goals is attributed to the effectiveness of an organization attain its goals.
Projects are the order of the day in private and public institutions; regardless of their size, they need to be managed effectively and be well planned. Internal multi-project environment management literature is limited however, this paper will attempt to bring forth some relevant areas in managing portfolios; it will use the limited resources and the intellectualism of the writer to develop materials that can be used in project management. At any, no time should be a project is initiated without the development of attainable project goals and objectives. Project objectives are the goals and derivatives that a certain project is supposed to fulfil; the goals are in line with the organization’s corporate goals and objectives.
When objectives are not well written, then the project is likely to lose focus along the way and never produce the expected results.
Effective PPM is crucial in project management; it gives management the time and the required information to manage a project effectively. When well implemented, a manager has less to worry about the achievement and fulfilment of a certain project. The system aligns projects objectives with corporate objectives that assist in the proper management of projects. To have an effective PPM a project manager should ensure that there is information adequately needed for the maintenance of the project.
With the project team at hand, the project charts and work breakdown schedules are developed, plan to give what will be done when and at what time is developed; it is important to note that some tasks can be delayed to future data and other is dependent on completion of other all these factors should be taken into consideration. The need for accurate and reliable information does not end with the implementation of a project but spans to include updating of project information when the project is up and running.
Project Portfolio Management involves running of multiple projects simultaneously; each project has a contribution to the main project goal, it has all characteristics to a full project and need to be managed effectively.
Bob Buttrick, an expert in project management summarizes project management as interrelated activities that lead to final objectives. A project is attained through the collaboration of several people, managers, supervisors, people on the ground and any contractors. The team and its combination should be selected and given the specific tasks that they are wanted to perform in the organization.
Before the project has been implemented, there is the need to have a team that is going to discuss the possibility and the expected outcome of the business the team that will involve itself in a market analysis program where it will correct data on various issues and analyses them.
Management of a project is at a different level; each level has some mandate that it should take to ensure that the completion of the project is within a stipulated schedule. When managing a portfolio, managers work with a summary and key data’s; this is because they entrust different areas to the team heads and they have full belief that the leaders will be effective in their management.
When information is represented in simplified form for example, in the form of charts, graphs and pie charts, then management gets a grasp of the entire project by a glance and avoids information overloads. Managers at the team level have the mandate of keeping their section information and dispense it when needed appropriately. The manager should ensure that all the needed resources both physical and human resources are available; in case there is a deficit in any one area, the main analysis that the manager should do is to understand how long the project can run without the resources lacking.
The project evaluation process is a crucial stage of project portfolio management; the process is used to evaluate different stages of projects systematically to estimate and gauge how much the stage is in line with the overall objective of the project. At the start, a stage (stage-gate) the section managers should evaluate the business potential on whether it is still relevant and able to deliver the organizations’ objectives. This offers the manager a chance to change direction and implement new systems in case the gate shows that implementing the project will lead to the failure of the project. When there is continued evaluation, then a project is kept on pace and on
PPM should consider:
- “Where the project is, and to what level is it attaining its set objectives”
- “In what way is the project managed? Is it following the accepted mode of conduct?
- Is the project online with the policies asset?
- Is there any benefit or progress?
The above guiding questions should be the process to follow, if any of them has a negative answer then the manager should realize that the project is not on course and may result to losses in the company. Alternatively, if any of the answers are negative, there is a possibility that the area can be addressed separately and the personnel is involved be questioned for better improvement. There is a difference between some of the critical functions that need optimal management and others that can be delayed; the evaluators have the role of differentiating them in that line.
Computers have developed a new platform of management of programs, they are now used as the tools of guiding and managing of projects; when selecting the tool and the software to use, a company needs to be careful to adopt that level of technology that is in line with the technology rate of the company. Alternatively, large and small projects cannot be evaluated using a similar level of software and technology; management should ensure they have attained the most current yet the less expensive and most effective computer software.
Computer aiding systems can be in-house developed or they can be sourced from commercial markets, in whichever the way that they have been attained, and then the system should be responsive to the needs of the company projects. They need to have the capacity of interpolating of different issues and information then give the desired response to the managers for effective decision-making. Computers offer an effective management tool when the right technology has been used but when they have been misused, they can lead to failure and misguiding to an entire project.
The operators of computer-aided project developments should have a good understanding of how the system works as well as understand the various logistics that are involved in the project at hand, it is by doing so that appropriate mechanism can be adopted.
An effective PPM system is likely to address the following areas
- Project evaluation process or methodology: give a framework of the pathway that the company should follow
- Cost and benefits measurement: evaluate the benefits and gains that every stage in the project is leading to a dif there is a stage that is not fully operational, the system should be strong enough to alert the managers
- Progress reporting: the system should be able to check and report the progress of the system periodically and offer reports that can be used to improve the project, to be in a position to do this, the system should incorporate some checks and balances and have optimal performances levels.
- Communication of key project data: in management of a project, data and information are of the essence, there is a need to have timely and relevant data at all times. This will offer the much-needed resource to manage the project effectively: an effective system should have the ability to offer the required data when needed and acceptably portray the data.
- Resource and capacity planning: resources are limited, they need to be effectively managed and put in optimal use, an effective system should have the capability of offering a resource allocation tracking system
- Cost and benefits tracking: as the project unfolds, there is an urgent need to have all the areas on track, the system should ensure that it looks into the development of a project and make improvements changes where needed.
PPM software analysis the project as a whole and assist managers to have a better track of the project progress, they are of great benefit to management and they need to be of the right operation, failure to which a project will suffer. The main objective of an effective PPM is to put available resources into optimal use; resources are scarce so their management and utility are paramount in modern societies.
Managers should understand that their main role id linking the laid down strategy with actual performance, they should understand that they should be the pioneers of development and operation in the firm. When they fail to undertake effectively their duty, they should be assured they are leading their organization to failure.
Simon Moore introduces 10 steps to revitalize the project portfolio process, he believes that before a project can be initiated, and the first thing that a company should embark on is internal analyzing of its potential and ways that the potential can be put in proper use. With limited resources and having a variety of mutually exclusive projects to undertake, the managers should ensure they select that project that offers maximum returns to the company.
To create synergy and keep a project running, a company needs to develop management elements and factors that can be used to motivate the team players to work for hand; they should be encouraged through being shown the success they have made so as they can feel motivated to develop the project further.
Define business goals
A project can only be successful if there attainable goals and objectives set for the project. A project that is running blindly without a vision, mission and objective is bound to fail. After determining the cost points and all related expenses that will be incurred in course of the project, a budget that consolidates all the costs is prepared, the budget should analyze all the areas that the project will fulfil and ensure that expense floors and ceilings are made, since the future is unpredictable, it is important to have flexible budgets. In case a certain goal is not attainable, it should be abandoned.
A project is bound to be faced with several risks; there is a need for management to establish the risks that are to be associated with the project and develop adequate mitigation measures.
When managing a project, there is needed to have honest management and team, this will facilitate the development of appropriate decisions making systems to the benefit of the company.
The minimal resources in a company call for project prioritization; there is need to consider the benefits that can be accrued from different projects and choose the project that effectively utilizes available resources and gives the highest yield to accompany. Considering the rate of risk of different tasks is also crucial.
Use efficient decision-making
Before implementation and after implementation of a project, a company should be taking appropriate research on what the world is going through and make relevant reports that can aid in the management of the project. It is important to consider the following key report types:
- Single-page project report: this is a short report that offers a single but direct grasp of the project. It should be summarized to offer an overview of what the project is like and how it is expected to be.
- Budgetary information: it provides room for an aggregate roll-up on budgetary status; the main issue is to ensure there are resources for every project.
- Project dashboard: they have one-lie simplified reports on the execution level and the progress of the project.
- Resource allocation view: a comparison of the currently available resources and their chances of availability in the next 12 months
- Strategic alignment: reports that align the entire project with the role and goals of an organization.
- Flexible pivot table capabilities: it uses drag-and-drop pivot table-style analysis to offer management platform of answering certain questions of the project as they arise.
Establish communication frameworks
Communication is important in development, initialization, concluding and making final reports of the project. There is a need to develop and maintain an effective communication method. Managers should be able to offer directions and receive feedback from the ground using an appropriate communication method. Depending on the technology adopted and the nature of a project, communication can take different forms: they include online reports, word of mouth, and periodical letters. Project success can be measured in terms of the practicability of business relationships that is directly proportional to the quality of communication.
Four communication weaknesses or barriers at Samsung are the overloads of messages, failure to share information among major stakeholders, failure to include employees in decision-making processes, and personal attributes. These barriers to effective communication should be addressed effectively so that they do not lead to the failure of a project. Organizational culture is complex with varied definitions. It includes custom, knowledge, belief, morals, and personal capabilities; it affects the communication efficiency in a company.
To manage effectively projects, managers need to have an ongoing budgetary and analyzing method; they should never assume that since the project has been well planned; then that is the end of the story, they should understand that there are changes that might affect the project negatively thus they need to be checked effectively.
A constant review of the budget, periods and the final periodical results will assist project managers to keep the project on its toes.
Despite having effective and elaborate project management, managers should be open to adapt new methods of doing things and better systems to attain their set goals and objectives. When well managed, a company can have synergy developed at different times within the organization for the betterment of the project.
Improvements and new systems of operation come from inventions and innovations made by employees and the changes of external environments, they should be incorporate and if they are for the benefit of a company, they need to be taken as part of the larger project.
Project managers should be open to criticism and incorporate inputs made by staffs regarding how the project can be managed. When making decisions, it should not be a one-man show; however, project team members and experts need to be incorporated. Despite the consideration of other people’s opinion, project managers should understand that they have the final decision over the project and are responsible for their decisions.