Ferris HealthCare, Inc. In july of 2014, senior management at Ferris recognized that its future growth could very well be determined by how quickly...
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Ferris HealthCare, Inc.

In july of 2014, senior management at Ferris recognized that its future growth could very well be determined by how quickly and how well it implemented pro- ject management. For the past several years, line managers had been functioning as project managers while still managing their line groups. The projects came out with the short end of the stick, most often late and over budget, because managers focused on line activities rather than project work. everyone recognized that pro- ject management needed to be an established career path position and that some structured process had to be implemented for project management.

A consultant was brought into Ferris to provide initial project management training for 50 out of the 300 employees targeted for eventual project management training. Several of the employees thus trained were then placed on a committee with senior management to design a project management stage-gate model for Ferris.


After two months of meetings, the committee identified the need for three different stage-gate models: one for information systems, one for new products/ services provided, and one for bringing on board new corporate clients. There were several similarities among the three models. However, personal interests dic- tated the need for three methodologies, all based on rigid policies and procedures.


After a year of using three models, the company recognized it had a prob- lem deciding how to assign the right project manager to the right project. Pro- ject managers had to be familiar with all three methodologies. The alternative,considered impractical, was to assign only those project managers familiar with that specific methodology.


After six months of meetings, the company consolidated the three method- ologies into a single methodology, focusing more on guidelines than on policies and procedures. The entire organization appeared to support the new single meth- odology. A consultant was brought in to conduct the first three days of a four-day training program for employees not yet trained in project management. The fourth day was taught by internal personnel with a focus on how to use the new method- ology. The success to failure ratio on projects increased dramatically.


QUESTIONS


1. Why was it so difficult to develop a single methodology from the start?

2. Why were all three initial methodologies based on policies and procedures?

3. Why do you believe the organization later was willing to accept a single method-

ology?

4. Why was the single methodology based on guidelines rather than policies and

procedures?

5. Did it make sense to have the fourth day of the training program devoted to the

methodology and immediately attached to the end of the three-day program?

6. Why was the consultant not allowed to teach the methodology?

Answered by Expert Tutors

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