The Accounting Software Installation Project- 2010 Essay

M1 PROJECT MANAGEMENT: Leading, Creating, Implementation and Improvement The Accounting Software Installation Project- 2010 TABLE OF CONTENTS Page 1. Glossary1 2. Executive Summary2 2. 1Background2 2. 2Problems2 2. 3Recommendations3 3. Case analysis and underlying causes4 4. Recommendations10 5. Appendix12 6. Bibliography13 1. GLOSSARY Bill of Materiala convenient method of combining components that are required to manufacture a product. Enables user to add costs to raw material items as fixed amount and as a percentage of raw material cost. Firm-fixed price remains fixed unless customer and contractor agree on a change.

Low risk for customer and high risk for contractor. Price bill of quantities the prices and rates to be inserted by the Tenderer in the Bill of Quantities shall be the full inclusive prices to be paid by the Employer for the work described under the several items, and shall include full compensation for all bosts and expenses that may be required in and for the completion of all the work described and as shown on the drawings as well as all overheads, profits, incidentals and the cost of all general risks, liabilities and obligations set forth or implied in the documents on which the Tender is based.

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Trade of analysis deviations from original estimates influenced by internal and external environment where only time and cost elements are allowed to go behind schedule or can be compromised. System development Life cycle is a Project Management planning tool consisting of a set of phases or steps to be completed over the course of development of IS Information System is a computer based system that accepts data as input, processes it and Produces information to the users 2. EXECUTIVE SUMMARY 2. 1. Background Parks Corporation is a Matrix-based organization. It had 6500 staff compliment but retrenched down to 2200 people.

In 1998 Parks Corporation increased its staff by about 20 percentage. This project is aimed at developing a new material for a short-range tactical missile to operate successfully through temperatures between 65 degrees Celsius to 145 degrees Celsius and that it should last more than 6 years. Lord Industries is the Prime contractor of Department of Defense (DOD). Parks Corporation is the sub-contractor of Lord Industries. The Blue Spider project – Phase 1 for improving the structural capabilities of the Spartan missile used by the army has been awarded to Parks Corporation.

The contract awarded to Parks Corporation over 10 months for Phase 1 is worth 2. 2 million dollars at firm-fixed price (FFP). The deal over 20 years could yield a 500 million dollars program. Below are some of the problems identified within Parks Corporation but categorized into 3 different strategies which are basis for organizational performance and improvement: 2. 2. Problems i) Behavioral Strategy 1. Ineffective communication skills 2. Poor leadership 3. Lack of integration and coordination 4. No cognitive and co-native understanding 5. Poor customer focus 6. Lack of support 7. Lack of trust and integrity 8.

Lack of interpersonal skills 9. Inappropriate team creation, involvement 10. Lack of empowerment and delegation 11. Poor meeting management 12. Lack of conflict management 13. Lack of ability to handle stress 14. Time management skills 15. Poor Quality Management Systems (QMS) ii) Structural Strategy 1. Lack of authority and responsibility 2. Poor Balance scorecard factors 3. Lack of project methodologies 4. No evidence of project software 5. Organogram and reporting problems 6. Lack of policies and procedures 7. Lack of budgetary authority 8. Poor organizational climate 9. Poor PM documentation iii) Operational Strategy 1.

Lack of skills 2. Lack of mentoring and coaching 3. Poor planning, monitoring and control 4. Lack of learning and growth and skills transfer 5. Poor Resource planning 6. Poor problem-solving 7. Poor time-management 2. 3. Recommendations 3. CASE ANALYSIS Background The Blue Spider project requirements are specific and measurable e. g. develop a new material for a short-range tactical missile to operate successfully through temperatures between 65 degrees Celsius to 145 degrees Celsius and would last for more that 6 years. The main focus of Parks Corporation as a private company should be to improve financial and service performance.

The scope change came from Parks Corporation, Gary being Program manager, he could have negotiated and agreed with Lords on the need for change of material which meant more time was needed to test the new material. That meant changing the schedule, cost to ensure as well that the quality expectations are met and maybe exceeded. Parks Corporation has tried and failed a couple of Project base organizational structures. They have now adopted a Matrix-type structure. Parks’ corporate strategy was based on or controlled by the market needs. Their market was DOD, which meant when DOD shifted their need from R&D, Parks would staff accordingly.

Engineering market went down, which meant that a lot of Engineers from Parks were laid off. Parks Corporation went through Grainer’s life cycle, they reached maturity and hence they had some retrenchments. Gary was then promoted to Senior Scientist in R&D. Before then, he was in Production Engineering for some years. In this case, Gary who is the Project manager role, has been promoted from a Research Engineer. He holds a PH. D in Mechanical Engineering and MBA. He was initially employed in R&D but reported directly to a Senior Project Manager and indirectly to a Director of Engineering.

There are a number of unorganized meetings and no report on meeting deliverables instead there is a report on overrunning costs and schedule. There is no mention of any moneys or payments made by Lord Industries to Park Corporation rather the fact that the project was funded by Production income. There is no post project evaluation meeting held and no form of customer feed back was provided. Gary, the Project manager was to draw up the bill of material which should be the responsibility of the engineer. He took that upon himself on a cost-cut exercise and lack of delegation and empowerment.

Generally the Parks management acts dishonestly, with lack of integrity and no open communication among staff and executive management. Henry Gable – Engineering Director manipulated the accelerated aging tests to be changed on Gary’s Blue Spider Project funding. Gary’s work and family suffered due to the demands by the project. These are the definition for the 3 strategies in their level of importance and links to the Critical Success Factors (CSF) of the Balanced score card (BSC): Behavioral Strategy Behavioral Strategy: management hires, trains, integrate people into a system of authority, responsibility and accountability.

Eg. Culture and attitudes – Customer focus and learning and growth. 1. Problem : Ineffective communication Cause : i) 2. Problem: Poor leadership Cause : i) 3. Problem: Lack of integration and coordination Cause : i) resulted in management trying to kill small fires than managing effectively and efficiently and taking initiatives 4. Problem: No cognitive and co-native understanding Cause : i) ii) lack of understanding that talent or staff is the highest important entity to a successful project 5. Problem: Poor customer focus Cause : i) 6. Problem: Poor Prioritization

Cause : 7. Problem: Lack of support Cause : i) ii) No designated Program Manager where PM would report to. iii) Project Director had no direction for his division 8. Problem: Lack of interpersonal skills Cause : i) due to management lack of negotiation, communication and problem-solving skills 9. Problem: Inappropriate team creation, involvement Cause : not involving direct management when staffing his project He did not know their work experience, their behaviour and thinking Due to poor communication, the roles and responsibility were not clearly defined

Team members were dissatisfied which led to loss of interest and commitment to the project 10. Problem: Lack of empowerment and delegation Cause : due to inexperience and uncertain of roles and responsibility when Project Manager (PM) did administration work that could have been done by the project office and his hands-on involvement in engineering with the testing of material – lack of confidence in them and lack of trust 11. Problem: Poor meeting management Cause : had a lot of emergency meeting due to poor planning and decisions made in those meetings were not documented

No evidence of project evaluation meeting held 12. Problem: Lack of commitment Cause : again the reason for this was PM’s poor planning, interpersonal skills and generally a disorganized leader who is suppose to give direction 13. Problem: Lack of motivation Cause : as a result of PM’s poor leadership skills and no acknowledgement of good work done, the team got demotivated 14. Problem: Project or program management turnover Cause : Due to no support from executive management, no motivation and not choosing the appropriate candidate for PM based on character, skills and experience 15.

Problem : Poor Quality Management Systems (QMS) Cause : No evidence of Quality Department or quality personnel involved with the development of the new material Team involvement which is a pillar of Total Quality Management (TQM) is lacking in Parks Structural Strategy Structural Strategy: Creates an organizational or architecture including policies, procedures, reporting patterns, information systems and communications channels. Eg. Organogram, policies and authority – Financial perspective. 1. Problem: Lack of authority and responsibility Cause : roles that are not clearly defined and absence of policies and procedures

Absence of Humans Resources department and HR department Product and Engineering managers lacked authority in running their departments due to being micro-managed 2. Problem: Poor Balance scorecard factors Cause : Parks strategy not communicated vertically and horizontally Could not align the strategy to the CSF Project based organization but not informed about project management Strategies Mission and vision are some guiding principles that the strategy needs to be in line with 3. Problem: Lack of project methodologies Cause : the project office not functioning properly, no standardized reporting

Format, no scheduling and control tools No documentation as new PM comes and goes and the Project Director not ensuring that the policies are documented 4. Problem: No evidence of project software Cause : lack of infrastructure as this software is a tool used within project office 5. Problem: Organogram and reporting problems Cause : Parks’ organogram was not correct as normally a program manager is heading a project office 6. Problem: Lack of policies and procedures Cause : there is a huge deficiency with policies and procedures which are meant o provide guideline for processes, define roles and responsibilities 7. Problem: Lack of budgetary authority Cause : due to the reporting structure as per the organogram 8. Problem: Poor organizational climate Cause : poor communication and trust 9. Problem: Poor PM documentation Cause : inefficient agendas, progress reports and final report Figure 1. 1 Current Parks Corporation Structure Operational Strategy Operational Strategy: Acquisitions and allocations of capital, materials and other resources. E. g tools and techniques – Internal processes 1. Problem: Lack of skills

Cause : Gary is a qualified engineer and had just acquired a MBA degree Even though Gary was an internal candidate but he did not meet the criteria of the project manager, lack of qualified PM’s with his expertise 2. Problem: Lack of mentoring and coaching Cause : Absence of Human Resources, failed to implement these processes There was a necessity to coach someone that was working on technical field as a specialist to PM environment 3. Problem: Poor planning, monitoring and control Cause : Project planning, monitoring and control were not done due to lack of nowledge, software and methodologies. 4. Problem: Lack of learning and growth and skills transfer Cause : due to absence of Human Resources functions and policies and procedures Lack of commitment from leadership 5. Problem: Poor Resource planning Cause : Team creation was done with available resources and less communication with functional managers about talent via project configuration management meeting . 6. Problem: Poor problem-solving Cause : lack of technique and skills due to lack guidance and experience 7. Problem: Poor time-management Cause : lack of planning 4. RECOMMENDATIONS

The benefit of using BSC is a strategy for achieving organizational goal, clarifies organizational strategy, increases the understanding of the company mission and vision. Project Leadership and the project office must consistently be able to align the project objective to their corporate strategy. Parks project office need to adopt PM methodologies like standardized planning, scheduling and controlling tool, standardized reporting format. TQM is a very important strategy that must be incorporated into other company systems. PM’s must be given total authority where they are responsible and accountable including budget.

Parks leadership needs to introduce PM software to improve the company’s information system. They also need to introduce System Development Life Cycle (SDLC) to help plan and control the development of their Information Systems (IS). That would include Work Breakdown Structure (WBS), Linear Responsibility Chart (LRC),Gant Chatt and network diagram. The organizations leadership including PM must create a culture of motivation within their teams. PM must have a positive mindset and must be self motivated so that they can motivate their teams. Leadership need to adapt a participative and consultative leadership style.

PM must establish ongoing communication with the customer in an effort to improve customer focus and also build trust. PM need to understand factors in creating high performance teams such as the way people reason, how they operate and how they react. It is always recommended that a team building would be one of many ways of getting to know your team better. Gary needs to attend some interpersonal skills course such as negotiation skills and communication skills courses. Team members need to participate from planning phase so that they are committed to the project. Provisions must be made for bonuses, cost overruns and scope changes.

That will be done by creating a new baseline plan. The team must participate in decisions taken to implement any change to the scope. A note-taker must be assigned to projects and meetings must be taken and only capture the decisions made, person responsible for that action and the due date. Figure 2: Rough sketch of minutes Action No:ActionResponsible PersonDeadline Date 1. WELCOME PM need to maintain excellent relationships throughout the project. Leadership need to learn to delegate but that requires an element of trusting the person you are delegating to based confidence in the skills they have.

New PM need to be lead, supported, coached and mentored so that they can be successful and not to leave their jobs after the project. Parks executive management must do away with beauracratic red-tape by openly discussing priorities, interests, defining roles and responsibilities will eliminate conflict. Prioritise resource allocation on strategic objectives. Leader or PM personnel should have the following skills: leading, communication, planning, organizing, team creation, motivating, directing, co-ordinating, negotiation and directing.

Gary as a project manager need to have some insight into project management holistic approach by investing in getting educated on Project management which will yield return on investment. In the creating and implementation phase, PM must be able to identify work to be done, quantify work and identify resources available. In implementation, the Gary should have monitored the work according to plans and appraised achievement. The PM needs to illustrate activities graphically through Network Breakdown Structure. PM have to have technical and administrative expertise.

The project team must be able to identify problems and potential problems in the early stages. Once the Human Resources department is established, they must establish training and development programmes. To develop certain skills, HR must establish channels whereby personnel identify shortage of skills, can acquire those skills within the organization by means of skills transfer and mentoring and coaching. To save time, leadership of Parks must learn to delegate as project principles. Again, to avoid waisting time, Gary should send the agenda and only invite personnel with decision making authority to improve communication.

Some additional skills needed in PM are presentation skills. During the termination phase, PM must have post-project evaluation meeting, customer feedback and ensure that payments have been collected from the customer. The Blue Spider Project was completed with the stipulated time but the trade-offs were quality and cost. The User Requirement Specification (URS) must be prepared by the PM. The FFP contract that Parks Corporation and Lord Industries entered into has a high risk for the contractor hence the Price bill of quantities would have to be submitted with the business plan or URS to cater for any risks and contingency met downstream.

Risks that I can identify are as follows: •The competition might outclass Parks Corporation •Parks reputation with Lords Industries and even with the DOD could be jeopardized •Type of contract poses a risk in a case where there needs to be a change of material and there are additional costs attached to testing new material •Material availability •QM processes are not in place therefore do not guarantee a quality product •Staff turnover and skilled personnel •Poor planning of work and resource allocation At the time income came from production business.

Well applied project methodologies together with proper planning will promote ‘Home after Project’ – meaning that maintained relationships and for the functional staff, they return to their functional departments. APPENDIX Abbreviations BSCBalanced score card CSFCritical success factors DODDepartment of defense FFPFirm-fixed price HRHuman Resources ISInformation system LRCLinear responsibility Chart MBAMasters in Business Administration PDPPersonal development plan PMProject manager R&DResearch and development RFPRequest for proposal

QMSQuality management systems SDLCSystem development Life cycle TQMTotal quality management URSUser Requirement Specification WBSWork breakdown structure BIBLIOGRAPHY •James P. Clements and Jack Gido “Effective Project Management”, International Student Edition, Thompson South-Western, Canada. 2006. •Kerzner, Harold, “Project Management: A Systems approach to planning, scheduling and controlling”, 9th Edition, John Wiley & Sons, Inc, USA,2006. •Available from: http://www. google. co. za •Available from: http://www. ibyss. co. za


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