Strategic Project Management
Project management is a critical tool instrumental in the growth and development of an organization or a business. Projects are developed and executed with a purpose to implement change. A project without strategy is merely a collusion of efforts resulting into confusion in a given set up of management. Strategy as we understand it focuses on choices; these choices are integrated together with an aim of improving a situation either by increasing efficiency or gaining a comparative advantage in a certain aspect.
In application, organization objectives are determinants of project selection and methods to incorporate. Objectives are merely the basis for project activities; they should be evaluated using the SMART approach. SMART stands for S-specific: they should be clearly stated having a specific outcome identified, M-measurable: every outcome should correspond with the success criteria, A-achievable: in utilizing time, resources and technology they should result to the desired quality, R-realistic: sensible with a flow of activities towards a set goal, T-timely: ought to be planned and executed in a given period of time (Rosenau, & Githens, 2011).
A project goal becomes a moving target due to its importance in improving performance. In today’s modern world traditional project management has scored very dismal this is part of the need for professionals in this field to wake up and think of new methods that tie strategy to outcome assuring advancement as competition has become a norm and to exist one has to adapt, conventional annual planning cycles and poor selection of projects that run down without adding value to a business have become outdated.
Project organization is a reflection of organization strategies. How a project is organized is informed by the mechanisms or blueprint that holds together a firm, better still projects are purposed to develop sustainable advantages or a superior edge against competitors. For instance, when an organization is experiencing hurdles in achieving its current strategy then pursuit of new goals and projects could be the answer (Norrie, & Walker, 2004).
Ambitious strategies are achieved by effective organization strategies. A highly competent project management guarantees success in fulfilling objectives. Managers play a role in reporting, work plan development and decision making, a good manager is eager to contribute to the project and work hand in hand with sponsors this is observed in board meetings where they act as secretaries. A project sponsor is useful as he/she provides an oversight of the whole project, with time sponsors have had to assume a role of delegating to determine success of a project. A sponsor ought to chair a project committee or board as a senior with deep knowledge and insight. Oftentimes projects have seniors who are responsible for every action and decision making.
As far as policies and procedures are concerned the field has and is still experiences a wide range of techniques and policies as many as the number of projects. To explain this we take a look at banks, most of bank project policies and procedures are tied to the operational policies, operational policies ensure that projects are appropriately packaged economically, financially and socially. In recent times sustainability has paid a courtesy call that organization are keen on addressing by designing policies that ensure environmental preservation (U.S.A, 2005). In industrial sectors firms are developing techniques and formulating policies that allow for least pollution and low energy consumption. Companies such as Kohl’s and STAPLES get their energy from renewable resources solar and wind are some of techniques used for low cost production. Policies and procedures continue to fine tune project management by designing an outcome with a benefit criterion.
Every project intends to successfully overcome the triple constraint. Triple constraint includes three elements these are; quality or scope, resources (cost) and schedule with is time. In application, all the tree factors must be balanced as failure to mismanage or misallocate one translates to a problematic management that may inhibit success (Norrie, & Walker, 2004). Foremost a project manager ought to know how to prioritise the triple constraint, priority is to understand what a client wants this is done by communication with the client to discern what is important to them. Consequently, it is easier to determine what scope and resources to employ for a stipulated time to achieve the goal.
Communication is key in a project success thus it should be done accordingly. Fortunately this activity has become easier through making use project 2010. By using Ms project 2010 one can deliver information faster to a small unit or in a large organization through networking, Ms 2010 professional has a user friendly interface and is loaded with features that ease communication, data manipulation, planning and transfer of data both in two way mode. All the above will help one to have a good communication but one ought to know his/her audience, be in a team of right people and timing is important to have the seniors at their best, address the solutions of the organization through the project communication (Johannessen, & Olsen, 2011)
Conclusively, strategy alone is not enough as it is only a plan or an idea in writing it is given life when it manifests into a project. Strategic projects are therefore employing calculated efforts tailor made by an organization objectives to achieve a desired outcome or goal.
Cleland, D. I., & Ireland, L. R. (1999). Project management: strategic design and implementation (Vol. 4). Singapore: McGraw-Hill.
Norrie, J., & Walker, D. (2004). A balanced scorecard approach to project management leadership. Project Management Journal, 35(4), 47-56.
Johannessen, J. A., & Olsen, B. (2011). Projects as communicating systems: Creating a culture of innovation and performance. International Journal of Information Management, 31(1), 30-37.
Rosenau, M. D., & Githens, G. D. (2011). Successful project management: a step-by-step approach with practical examples. John Wiley & Sons.
United States. Division of the Federal Register, United States. Federal Register Division, United States. (2005). The Code of Federal Regulations of the United States of America. Oklahoma, U.S. Government Printing Office