July 20, 2013

Project Management Trends

Project management involves coordinating with different people to complete a set of tasks in a precise sequence by applying knowledge, skills and techniques to meet stakeholder expectations. Project management ensures high productivity from available resources. Discussed below are some of the emerging Management trends:

1. Specific training as per need: Training is required to help develop skills including soft and hard skills. Human resources are crucial to an organization’s success. Staff development programs have highest impact on project performance. Thus, investing in training and skill development of their human resources has become need of the hour.

2. Effective Communication: Communication plays a vital role in today’s world. Effective communication is necessary to communicate vision or goal of an organization. It is an essential tool to maintain strong work relation and build up level of trust and increase productivity.
3. Setting expectations: Setting clear and achievable goals for individual and team is important. They need to be aware of their roles and responsibilities and ensure that their objectives are aligned to the organization’s objective.
4. Corporate Social Responsibility: CSR is a form of self-regulation which ensures that an organization follows ethical standards in spirit of law. Organizations make sure that they do not exploit foreign workers, waste natural resources, or damage the environment through negligence or in the name of increased profit.

5. Larger projects hold challenges and brings new learning: Large projects bring up new challenges. Many such projects include thousands of people as well as impressive levels of technical complexity that few companies are successful in managing. This helps team to learn with every new situation, adapt and build their capability.

6. Multi-tasking: People from different departments should understand the need to perform various project management duties. From human resources to finance to marketing, everyone gets into some realm of project management.

7. Vendor management: Rise of outsourcing has increased exposure to vendors. Team has to learn to collaborate with other teams across location, across organization to smoothen the process and contribute to the outcome.
8. Reduce Cost and Invest: For complex projects, the companies have to try to reduce costs such as transportation costs, and invest to an application that has web based access and has tools to create, save and distribute project information.
9. Follow standard process: As far as planning, requirements, and team communication formulation is concerned, the companies may follow custom made methodologies to do what works best for them.
10. High quality product delivery: The end customer is very important and the success of the project will be determined by them, who will challenge the project to exceed its time and cost estimates.
11. Data security: Client’s Data security needs to be taken with utmost importance at any cost. Otherwise, it can lead to sour relationship and litigation issues.
12. Formal Communication: Formal documented communication is necessary for all discussions held amongst stakeholders. Documenting them is mandatory.
13. Social Media tools: Use of social media for disparate and uncoordinated and collaboration tools to increase productivity and understand needs of people. It is helpful to understand needs of customer and design products accordingly.
14. Decision making: The pressure for project managers to get things done quickly keeps increasing, particularly with today’s tightening budgets. It is very important that Project managers deploy best practices while choosing the projects, knowing when to say no to ventures which will not deliver a solid return on investment and also when to give green-light the projects which are promising.
15. Critical thinking and saying ‘No’: Critical thinking is a key to management competency. Technical competence alone doesn’t make an impact. Project management has evolved into a robust discipline, and it is the critical thinking which is the key soft skill which can make the difference between success and failure.
16. Retaining Team Members: Holding onto the best and brightest team members is crucial to project deliverables. These brightest minds act as a source of inspiration to the new team members to perform and give their best effort every time and also lend helping hands in time of need.

This article is written by Piyush Mohit. He is a PGDM student of 2013-15 batch of IIM Raipur. A graduate in Electrical & Electronics Engineering from College of Engineering Roorkee, and has a stint of 3.5 years with Accenture in Information Technology serving Insurance domain clients. His areas of interest include Finance, Quizzing and Indian Politics. He can be reached at pgp13042.piyush@iimraipur.ac.in.

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