What gets in the way of successful project management? While respondents rated their satisfaction level on managing their most important projects in the past two years at an above-average 3.8 on a 5-point scale, they also identified numerous roadblocks to successmany of which involved setting and maintaining proper priorities throughout the process.
More than three fourths of the respondents agreed with the statement that their most important project was late or over budget because their companies' needs and priorities changed during the project. Additionally, 62 percent of the respondents said they encountered changes in personnel during the project-management phase, and another 61 percent said they ran into technical problems with one or more key product vendors.
A large percentage of respondents also agreed with a variety of statements posed to them about internal prioritization challenges they faced in managing their projects:
Priorities set at the beginning of projects were later shifted73 percent agreed.
The prioritization process for our most important project needs improvement64 percent agreed.
It is difficult to get different departments to agree on priorities61 percent agreed.
The prioritization process is politically driven 49 percent agreed.
Company size had a fairly predictable effect on the prioritization results; for instance, 44 percent of CIOs at companies with fewer than 1,000 employees believed the process is politically driven, but that number rose to 62 percent among CIOs at larger companies.
The most difficult aspects of ensuring on-time/on-budget project management: meeting top executives' expectations (3.3 on a 5-point scale of difficulty), changing deadlines (3.2) and dealing with unproven technologies (3.0).
This article was originally published on 09-01-2001