The AMA Handbook of Project Management

By Paul C. Dinsmore; Jeannette Cabanis-Brewin | Go to book overview
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CHAPTER 27
The Project Office: Rationale and Implementation

J. KENT CRAWFORD, PMP, CEO, PROJECT MANAGEMENT SOLUTIONS, INC.

JEANNETTE CABANIS-BREWIN, PROJECT MANAGEMENT SOLUTIONS, INC.

The value of sound project management has never been more in the public consciousness, thanks to studies by the Standish Group, the Gartner Group, and other IT research firms.1

But sound project management of individual projects is no longer enough. While there still are some instances in which a company is almost entirely focused on one or two major projects at a time—small software development firms or capital construction firms, for example—in most businesses dozens of projects exist throughout the company in various stages of completion (or, more commonly, of disarray). It wouldn’t be at all uncommon for a company to have several new product development projects in process, along with a process reengineering effort, a Six Sigma initiative, a new marketing program, and a fledgling e-business unit. Widen the scope of your thought to take in facilities, logistics, manufacturing, and public relations, and you begin to understand why most companies have no idea how many projects they have going at one time. And, when you consider that technology plays a role in almost all changes to organizations these days and that technology projects have an abysmal record of failure,2 it becomes apparent: unless all the projects that a company engages in are conceptualized, planned, executed, closed out, and archived in a systematic manner—that is, using the proven

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