New standards in project management office

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From crisis to control: New standards for project management
By Michael Stanleigh March/April2006
Reprint # 9B06TB02

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From crisis to control: New standards for project management

Metrics and best practices for project management are few and far between, which is one reason why many projects fail. One of the main problems, this author argues, is that theprojects are not aligned with organizational goals. From creating a Project Management Office to establishing and codifying best practices, the author has sound suggestions for making a project undertaken a project that succeeds.
By Michael Stanleigh

completion or because the product developed is never used. This statistic has not effectively changed since 1994. In addition, in 2004,PriceWaterhouseCoopers found that only a handful of projects initiated ever achieve success. Its survey focused on a broad range of industries, large and small, in 30 different countries -- 10,640 projects, for a total value of $7.2 billion. The study found that only 2.5 per cent of global businesses achieve 100 per cent project success. In Canada, project management waste is equally evident. According to TheGlobe and Mail, the Ontario government recently paid out $63 million to settle litigation with EDS Canada Ltd., the result of a failed attempt to create a computer network meant to connect the entire provincial justice system. Furthermore, Toronto's auditor general says that a police database project called "eCops" that went $10 million over budget was woefully mismanaged. We'll never know about themany other projects in crisis in public companies. The reality is that examples can be found in just about every type of organization in Canada and abroad. It makes one wonder what it is going to take to get these organizations to invest just a fraction of their losses in order to save millions. Unfortunately, many firms seem too willing to pay out millions on bad project management. This articleoffers recommendations for more effective project management.

Michael Stanleigh is President, Business Improvement Architects, and Director of Project and Quality Management, Centres for Innovation, Sheridan College. A billion-dollar problem
Corporations throughout the world are losing billions in wasted project spending. This waste is being carefully hidden from management and investors.Moreover, a global research report completed by our firm shows that one of the biggest contributing factors to this waste is a severe lack of alignment between projects and corporate strategy. The cost of the problem is staggering. A recent example is Royal Dutch Shell's biggest and most prestigious project, Sakhalin Energy, a Siberian liquefied gas facility. Project costs for Sakhalin doubled from$10 billion to $20 billion (U.S). According to The Times of London, the humiliation was even greater because Shell's CEO had not been made aware of the cost increase. The fiasco is not exclusive to Shell. In the IT sector, the results of The Chaos survey, by The Standish Group, shows that 71 per cent of all projects are either "challenged" due to late delivery, being over budget or delivering...
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