Wednesday, 15 September 2010 16:00

Australian bosses admit lack of project management expertise


The vast majority of business leaders across Australia lack confidence in their own ability to manage IT projects effectively according to a new survey. The shocking new finding was revealed despite the fact that the same survey showed that the respondents also overwhelmingly identified project management as critical to the future of their businesses.

ERP provider IFS and the International Project Management Association (IPMA) has released a new study which surveyed 273 CEOs, COOs and Project Managers across the world from the energy/utilities, telecom, oil and gas, construction and manufacturing sectors.

In Australia, respondents from 54 companies highlighted that:

'¢ 67% identify the ability to manage projects as critical or absolutely critical to the future growth of the business

'¢ Despite this, just 13% are very confident of their ability to manage business critical projects in the most efficient way

'¢ Just 28% have fully integrated IT systems for project management and only 15% are very confident they have full visibility of information to run projects effectively

Rob Stummer, Managing Director for IFS, Australia and New Zealand said, 'The research shows that for companies working in project based industries there is a growing demand from customers to deliver these projects faster whilst reducing costs. Business leaders understand how critical these projects are, but very few have access to the information they need to ensure they are implemented quickly and to budget.'

Both the business leaders and project managers questioned agreed that the top three most important factors for consistent and efficient project management were resource planning (56%), integrated enterprise systems (46%) and real-time data (39%). These results mirrored organisational IT and project-based solution investment priorities with 37% stating integration of IT as top priority. Real-time data (35%) was the next priority, followed by personnel/skills (30%). Despite being stated as an investment priority and being crucial to business success, just over a quarter of organisations have fully integrated IT systems in place for project management.

'This new evidence points to the fact that despite project management being a business critical area, organisations are lacking the confidence in their ability to deliver effective projects. This is down to concerns regarding having access to the important information required to run projects efficiently and on time,' said Prof Brane Semolic, IPMA's Research Management Board Chair.

'The results to this survey are in line with anecdotal evidence we receive from our fifty Project Management Associations around the world, and make it clear that effective project management makes a vital contribution to customer delivery, cost control and future business growth.'

'Many of the companies in Australia said they were under increasing pressure to re-negotiate costs and prices in existing contracts and as a result, margins are lower than ever before. Now is the time for companies to re-think how they approach project management and invest in one integrated system, that gives them full visibility and control, from start to finish,' said Rob Stummer, Managing Director, IFS, Australia and New Zealand.


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Stan Beer


Stan Beer co-founded iTWire in 2005. With 30 plus years of experience working in IT and Australian technology media, Beer has published articles in most of the IT publications that have mattered, including the AFR, The Australian, SMH, The Age, as well as a multitude of trade publications.



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