Fundamentals Of Project Management

Fundamentals Of Project Management

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Unformatted text preview: needs a good methodology for planning projects if it is to be successful. Information Most organizations have problems with information on two counts. Good historical data are needed for planning projects, yet most organizations have not kept good records, so they have poor information about their own histories. This is especially true for cost data. There is a rule in many companies that you cannot go above budget on a project. There is another rule that says you cannot come in under budget, either. To achieve such zero variance, projects that are overspending have charges transferred to those that are underspent, thus contaminating both databases and making the data worthless (actually worse than worthless, because they lead to inaccurate budgeting for future jobs). Note also the need for current information. A lot of companies find this to be a problem. They don’t have good management information systems (MIS) for projects, only for inventory, payroll, and manufacturing control. In fact, you may have to set up your own system initially, since information systems departments are often slow to develop what you need (if they do it at all). Fortunately, most scheduling software allows you to enter information and track progress yourself. With laptops, you can transmit data from remote sites easily, so this is not the problem that it once was. Control In a sense, the only reason you are reading this book is summed up by this one word—control. What are you expected to do as a manager? You are expected to get desired organization results through the management (call that control) of scarce resources. If you aren’t in control, you will soon be told about it and steps will be taken to get you in control or to get you out of the way. The control subsystem is supported by the planning and information subsystems. Both are needed in order to achieve control, because control is exercised by comparing where you are against where you are supposed to be, then taking action to correct any deviations. You need a plan to tell you where you are supposed to be, and you need information to tell you where you are. If either of these is missing, you can’t exercise control. More on this in Chapters 7 and 8. Key Points to Remember • • • • A project is a problem scheduled for solution. If the problem is not defined correctly, you may find the right solution to the wrong problem! Focus on desired outcomes. How will you know when you achieve them? Try to learn from every project by doing a final audit. Previous Table of Contents Next Products | Contact Us | About Us | Privacy | Ad Info | Home Use of this site is subject to certain Terms & Conditions, Copyright © 1996-2000 EarthWeb Inc. All rights reserved. Reproduction whole or in part in any form or medium without express written permission of EarthWeb is prohibited. Read EarthWeb's privacy statement. Fundamentals of Project Management by James P. Lewis AMACOM Books ISBN: 0814478352 Pub Da...
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This document was uploaded on 09/27/2013.

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