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How to support Management Decisions with project management

How to support Management Decisions with project management

Supporting Management Decisions is not easy. In the surface seems very easy for a manager to take resolution but when it comes to provide supporting metrics then the task becomes harder. And even harder if you have support your decisions to your supervisor, and the boss of the boss of your supervisor. The more level and organization have the more complex the decision making process is.

So how organization support management decisions? Based on our experience on the project management field, organizations can support decisions based on "purely financial data" or "project metrics" depending on the maturity of the organization.

Organizations with immature processes and with not solid project management practices will try to support their decisions "financially" - basically cancel initiatives based on costs or revenue or corporate priorities. But is this the right way to go?

Organizations with well establishes processes will address their decisions based on the recommendation of a "Project Management Office" (PMO). Depending on the area or sector, the respective PMO will table the project portfolio and be able to measure the "Return on Investment" for every single project and program based on predefined "Key Performance Indicators":

1. PMO manages all open projects in the organizations.

2. Depending on the organization (small, medium, large), there might be multiple PMOs: The Professional Services PMO, Infrastructure PMO, Security PMO, Operations PMO, etc.

3. Each PMO review the projects, schedules, deliverable, dependencies and costs.

4. For each project, the PMO must define metrics to properly measure the company Perceived Value of completing each project. Projects that contain customer deliverable are usually perceived to provide better returns than projects that contain internal deliverable.

For example: A project to install new servers to obtain a new contract/customer will have a higher company Perceived Value than a project to migrate the Email server to a new hardware.

i.e. but if the Email server is not updated; email communications will be lost, and customers will not be happy if their emails are bounced back. Hence it is critical to define the correct metrics to measure each project for their face value.

5. The PMO must present to management, the summary of all projects, ideally each PMO had already filtered and qualified the projects that are presented - such that company management can take decision and action based on "fact data".

For small organizations, one PMO can pretty much cover all of the above. Larger organizations tend to of course take longer time, as multiple PMOs will be included in the decision making process.

But the one challenge that faced any organization (small or large) is: how the PMO will collect and maintain project information up-to-date? ensure project status are reported - as they are truly are? and what is the real costs of supporting projects in-progress?

Timely access to information is critical for success, and that is where an online project management tool comes into play.

Posted on June 12, 2016

Tags: Management Decisions

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