Project Management Constrains

Driving project to safe delivery, project owner, sponsor, consultant, contractors and subcontractors must be vigilant and cautious of the communication aspects between stakeholders, in which all project characteristic depend on.

It was always understood that [time, scope, cost and quality] are the most influencing concepts to the project in which can easily become constrain, however the constrains have grown even more to include [risk] in viewing the type of constraints, project may suffer while in general project seems fine, unless proper controls are dedicated to project units [Project Principles, Project Ingredient, Customer Satisfaction].  Lately [customer satisfaction] was given more attention than ever before due to its complex relationship to project delivery.

The project principles integrated with the project ingerident can be a potential threat to any project when there is no proper integration and alignment provided to allow proper follow of project processes and knowledge integrated with one another, despite the size and complexity of the project. However many viewed constrain in a form of triangle shape and other in a form of diamond shape, yet from experience it would not matter as long as the project manager able to identify the potential risk before it happens and do something about it before further escalation.

Potential parried constrains

  • Project Principles: Conception, planning, implementation, monitoring, control, completion
  • Project Ingredients: project charter & statement of work, people roles & responsibility, organization structure, stakeholder analyses, proper integration between principles and project ingredient, Scope, IT, document control & Recodes, communication, human resources, quality management, risk management, procurement, time management, cost, health & safety and Environment
  • Customer Satisfaction: the acceptance of the project sponsor and stakeholders during project implementation, delivery and completion

Critical appeared constrains
Project Scope: Project specifications, drawings, blueprints and client’s requirements between the commitment and variation
Time: the time allocated to project in all its related aspect of project delivery, targets, milestones, and baseline changes
Quality: the level of product quality delivered during project execution until the final delivery of the products
Cost: the cost variance during project execution until project completion and the level of deviation from estimated budget
Risk: the risk of serious exposure to any of the project management components as such project principles, project ingredient and customer satisfaction that will affect the project path
Why do project fail:

  • Lack of dedicating enough time for planning at the early stage of the project
  • Lack of coordination between the project manager and tender department at early stage of project initiation
  • Lack of negotiating project price with the project manager prior to project award
  • Misunderstanding the project manager role and responsibility
  • Delay in appointing project manager and his team when project is awarded
  • Lack of project management authorities
  • Delay project mobilization
  • Lack of understanding project scope as conveyed by the owner
  • Unrealistic project time frame by the owner and contractor remain silent
  • Signing project contract blindly with the understanding of project time constraint and or cost constrain
  • Failure to put in place risk management plan, and register all possible risk exposure
  • Lack of or inadequate resource of man power or equipment due to cut down in cost
  • Lack of controlling project material delivery
  • Lack of proper records keeping, lessoned learn and change management process
  • Lack of qualified professional or skilled people hired
  • Inadequate safety measure taken into consideration
  • Lack of proper quality control taken into consideration when monitoring all aspect
  • Lack of leadership and communication
  • Lack of stakeholder analyses
  • Lack of risk management analyses
  • Lack of developing project methodology of the project will be running in order for the planning section have a clear approach to align the project to the methodology
  • Lack of project management competent
  • Lack of attention to the project team culture
  • Lack of working on the spirit of team
  • Lack of understanding how to address noncompliance and performance requirements
  • Failure to establish appropriate control over requirements or scope
  • Poor project management
  • Poor planned management transition

Five Critical area of [why Project fail]
Case Studies

  • The combination of different constrains that project is exposed to such as time and cost, with lack of proper mitigation and action taking to overcome project such challenges. The repetition of such deficiency could impede the risk and becomes definite if not taking care of earlier, therefore a project delay and budget deviation are developed combined with possible compliant by client concluded with dissatisfaction.
  • Similar project setback scenario, can be concluded if the risk wasn’t acted up on before situation can be worsen, as such an increase of the project inspection rejection numbers can devastate the quality control issues, forcing project to redo some activity jobs again and again, which ultimately increases the cost and time of the project and delaying project from meeting the targets.
  • The cost accumulation of many repeated activity jobs can add up to deviate from the estimated project budget and project path in which will eventually deviate from the estimated project delivery, narrowing the percentage of resolution to different scenario as such face with [penalty, project extension if lucky, get exchanged with another contractor] each of the choices is tough except with the second choice but again if luck is with you on delivering the project the owner will black list you for next potential project.
  • When there is a change in scope there will be slippage as well in all critical constrains area such as time, cost and possibly quality if project is pressured to finish on the original time without allowing any time extension to project duration

Experienced project manager will go with the most effective method in identifying project weaknesses and area of threats in order to provide a proper mitigation that suits the project circumstances. In my belief constrains are threats and weaknesses are potential risks, therefore putting risk as guiding tool can bring more success to project completion.

Project management become the hottest issue and topics of today especially for those who seeks tactical solution and corrective action to their top urgent concerns of project constrain. The American Academy for Project Management has great higher accredited program such as CIPM and MPM that can provide you with different techniques to achieve smart project resolution, when face with such project challenges.   However those who are not willing to invest on developing project personnel most likely to fall into project hardship and expose project to different constrains.

Furthermore project owner and contractors must admit that every project will have its own ups and down, concern issues and constrain. The project manager is the responsible for providing the right project resolution with minimum cost, shortest time and with quality.

Therefore PMs need to commit to the following to avoid any failure possibility;

  • Be alert and consistent
  • Manage by objective
  • Begin with the end in mind “visualize how the project will end”
  • Ensure full authority to the project
  • Motivate your team with different improvements and rewards
  • Be aware of “firefighting management style”
  • Communicate well and Provide Support at all time
  • Consider risk management as a core to preventive action
  • Keep your promises, assess the situation first before you promise
  • Understand first before to be understood
  • honour in public and disapprove in private
  • Be aware behavior, attitude and moral danger points
  • Set practical deadlines with proper project segmentation
  • Lead by example and explain as you coach your team
  • Get to know your people
  • Team work is the only way to successful project delivery
  • Ensure proper control to project documents and records
  • Utilize the use of lessoned learned in the project
  • If possible have project certified by international organization such as Intertek

The above is brief description over the understanding of broad and specific project constrains and the means to avoid unsuccessful project delivery. For more information on specific resolution to any complex project you may contact Averroes Business Advisory & Services.