This essay will evaluate the reasons why projects fail with some of the factors involves in the failure of a project. This will also include some suggestions to improve the project, as well as different types of tools that can be used to avoid the reasons for failure project. There will be some examples of various types of project that has been carried out in recent years. There are many projects fail to live up to their potential. Some projects fail to gain their schedule or budget goals or fail to deliver everything originally promised. Other projects easily fail altogether.
Many of the problems confronted by projects can be eluded or at least accommodated by effective project management practices. Any project does not matter how important it is; there is a possibility that it might be unsuccessful. Perhaps the most dangerous project management attitude would be to deny failure is a possibility. There are some main factors that plays a great role in the failure of a project they are: Political Lack of visionary leadership Lack of resources Organization culture Wrong technology Need and customer focus lost The detail description of the above factors are as follows - usually large projects that are undertaken for example IT projects cut across departments and as a result employees are forced to change the way they work, which affects the culture of the whole organization. This kind of change make employees and middle manager's scared, consequently can create bureaucratic road locks which affects the project's chances to succeed. The problem of many businesses that they consider the project such as IT project merely implementation of a technology, that is where they make the mistake every manager needs to see the project as an organization change as a whole.
In order to prevent such a problem somebody from the company must make it clear that every department needs to share information that they may have stored in the past. When IT projects fail, it may seem that the IT failed but it is virtually because of the organizational change failed. Lack of user input is the one of the main factor of failing a project like Information Technology. It is necessary to discuss the project with everybody involves in the outcome of a project. This may include not merely users but customers, business partners and internal department on whose help rely on the project success. For example when a multinational bank introduced a globalized IT system, banks in European branches received the final version of the new software, they discovered that all data entry forms were in English.
It is because each country had a liaison to United States head quarters and those liaison spoke English, nobody had thought of the language issue. It would not have been the case if somebody endeavored to obtain information about input from the data entry departments. Middle managers can be suspicious that the project might reduce their freedom as a result they hold the information about the way their departments run, which may have a great impact on the project. In order to confront this kind of problem the organization ought to ensure that three board groups contribute before the project gets underway, these three groups are: The people who will be affected by it Those who will implement it Those who will pay for it One of the reasons of project failure is that sometime the requirements are not well specified in the beginning and the project starts anyway. It can be resolved by securing input from stakeholders, mainly to define the problem, you have to know who you are solving it for. A long series of meeting and discussions from the beginning will assist to build what exactly the project can do and can not do.
Due to the estimation of time and resources some of the major project fails. It is essential to recruit the right people because sometime people who are less knowledgeable, what the technology can really do as a result make their own expectation and even fantasies. Uncertain expectation quite often leads to disaster, in which primarily straightforward technology project is required to solve more and more problems until it grows to out of control and unmanageable. To make sure that it does not occur, every project needs to initiate with a formal budgeting and formal risk assessment. Sometime poor and dishonest communication may cause failure in a project, particularly with IT project is that it is very hard for an ordinary man to really comprehend the jargon. There tends to be an overlap of buzzwords, so businesses and IT are not speaking the same language even though it seems they are.
So to avoid this kind of problem it would be wise for an organization to appoint two project managers - from IT and business specialist and making the job latter to help the board to comprehend what is going on. Even the best-planned project is relied on some of the factors to be successful that may be outside you control for example Spirit Airline is one of the largest private airline in the United States. The airline has decided to launch new software for tracking flights and personnel. After implementing a new system in September 1999, Spirit trained all the employees completely. The Federal Aviation Administration has approved the software, Spirit decided to go live on 01 Jan 2001.
That is the time which considered being the busy travel season and everything was going according to the plan. Due to the snow on the East Coast there were delays and cancellations of flights. Spirit agents were incapable of working fast to help passengers rebook flights using new system. Even though they had been trained but still they had to improve the spontaneous as it was ultimately achieved with applications. The company's suggestion was that it is essential to make sure the business people and the IT people are in good terms.
The Director Schorr quote was "I think we let the business drive this project without a lot of IT input." It proves the above point of poor communication between business people and IT people can cause a disaster in a project. Identifying project problems early and working to resolve them increases the likelihood of project success. Team members ought to be encouraged to raise any issues and concern rather than reproaching them with negative thinking. Sometime the project manager thinks that he or she is the better judge for what the client needs or what is justified than the client is.
When it happens, quite often the result is new information suggesting that the initial budget would not be achieved is ignored or contained to avoid upsetting the client. Every manager must remember that the project belongs to the client at all time, particularly when such a problem arises. There might be a project manager who made some unrealistic budget and not admitting to him or herself that there really is not sufficient resources or time allocated to accomplish the project. Normally leads to confusion followed by frustration and blaming, and virtually never followed by a successful project. If a schedule can not be developed at the beginning of the project with the employee working full time, it ought to be said that the project will not be on time and within the budget. Every project team needs tools and support to complete their work sensibly and effectively.
The tools can be hardware or equipment and support may be composed of the people maintain those tools and help the team with their use. If the tools and support are not thought of the beginning, or inadequate resources are designated to provide them, the project is in trouble. Many projects plan are created in presumption about the productivity of the project team from the starting point. Productivity expeditiously drops to zero when required tools and support are unavailable or unreliable. Defining, planning and managing business projects needs project management skills that requires time to learn and practice to master. It is not very hard to fail the project.
Every project involves creation of new products or services, which requires predicting in the future and managing that prediction. To get the project right, always expect that your prediction will not be exactly what you have predicted and deal with the reality as it comes. There are some typical phrases will be confronted during the course of the projects, they are like not enough resources when you need them, don't comprehend the capacity of existing resources, worried whether the plan or cost objective will be met. There are some recommended technical supports that could be used to tackle any project and the problem that a project needs to confront. The main recommendation of solving problem is to design the plan and mange the project by using Microsoft Project 2000. The experience of using MS 2000 portrays that it is quite effective and efficient way of starting any project.
It would not be unwise and exaggerated to say that the guidelines provided with each problem in a project and using MS 2000 will allow most of the project to be successful. If a project do not have the contingency plan then the only conclusion one can draw is that everything will turn out exactly as stated in the plan which is most unlikely. Project planning is like chaining together all the little jobs that go to make the up the project. When the projects get into trouble, people tend to believe that the problem can be solved by some simple action for example work in general, it can not.
If the project is in trouble its because the planning is wrong. In this situation the manager need to go back and plan it all over again otherwise the consequences would be disastrous for a project. In order to develop the project management side the manager should have an approach, which provides the capability of defining the project goals clearly and change control system. The manager should make sure that planned resources are gained. The contingency should be included in the plan and also allow the up front production of plan which predict a probable chaining together of all the little jobs in the project.
Make sure that the anticipation of project participant's is not limited to the scratch note in the plan but main elements of the project planning progression and ultimate success. Simple and effective monitoring will provide the help for a project to complete. Easy and effective reporting mechanism will support the project through out. These guidelines will play a great role in the success of any project if they were practised during the course of a project. Two of the most influential and long standing writers on the software process have been Fred Brooks (author of Mythical Man-Mouth the classic of software project management) and Barry Boehm (author of Software Engineering Economics).
Both men have made some remarkable comment on software project management. They are "Poor management can increase software cost than any other factor"Poor management can decrease software productivity more rapidly than any other factor" - Boehm "The single most important factor in the success of a software project is the talent of its project manager"Today's major problem are not technical problem but management problem" - Brooks These quotes are not only relevant to software project, but for any other project in a business environment. These phrases demonstrate that the management is the key to a success of a project. It is quite appealing to endeavour to find a single model of success for project's, like trying to run a project in a way that will be instantly successful. The reality is that Whatever can go wrong will go wrong (Murphy's Law) Whatever can be misunderstood will be misunderstood Project activities will always expand to fill the time or resources available (Parkinson, s Law) A project will spend 90 percent of its time 90 percent complete A carelessly executed project will take three times as long as planned - a well executed one will only take twice as long The attitude ought to be no matter what action is taken, there is going to be a degree of failure.