Sunday, July 13, 2008

10 top trends in project management for 2008

Author: RP news wires

Whether it’s building new IT infrastructure, coordinating remote employee teams or delivering a new product line, project management is no longer optional. It’s mission critical for companies – and their bottom lines.

Below we offer you the top 10 trends in project management, developed by senior management and practitioners at ESI International (, a global training company specializing in project and program management to optimize business performance.

  1. Investment in Project Management Training To Counter Effects of Troubled Economy. Squeezed profits, smaller budgets, looming layoffs — this is no time to panic. Keeping projects on track and on budget can counter ill effects of the down economy. Smart, strategic organizations will realize that the down economy is the time to invest in project management training and development to optimize performance.

  1. Better, Faster Project Decision-making. The pressures for Project Managers to “get it done yesterday” are ever increasing, particularly with tightening budgets in the downward spiraling economy. Project managers need to be up to speed deploying best practices in their project selection. Know when to say no to projects that won’t deliver solid ROI and which to greenlight.

  1. Critical Thinking As A Key Project Management Competency. Technical competence alone doesn’t create success. Project management has evolved into a robust discipline, and critical thinking is a key “soft skill” for Project Managers that makes the difference between success and failure.

  1. Emerging Relevance of the Project Management Office -- Imagine the Space Shuttle without its command center. Project management offices ensure a higher chance for organizations to 'reach the stars' and their end goals. PMO's streamline processes, coordinate projects and allow for more efficiency in day-to-day project management. As more companies see the relevance for PMO's, this trend will become increasingly important to overall project management design.

  1. Co-dependency between Project Management and Enterprise Analysis. In active knowledge management transfer, project managers with greater experience levels and an interest in functions like risk management are taking on traditional BA responsibilities, including enterprise analysis (EA).

  1. Project Managers Taking Leadership Roles in Organizational Change. In the face of unrelenting organizational change, project/program managers need to take a leadership role. However, leadership qualities are not program deliverables, so project managers occasionally need direction in fulfilling organizational change leadership obligations. They need to understand the business implications and what that means for projects, and how they can drive organizational change through effective project/project-portfolio management.

  1. Communication Challenges of Remote Team Management. As projects are increasingly conducted remotely through outsourcing and global expansion, project communication is often based on the written (email) and spoken (conference call) word. Unfortunately, a small percentage of what one wants to communicate is received through these channels. Project managers need best practices in communications for managing virtual teams.

  1. Earning PgMP Certification. Certified Program Management Professionals (PgMP) will be infiltrating the landscape in 2008. This new certification from the Project Management Institute (PMI) has project/program management professionals asking what are the inherent differences between their disciplines.

  1. Navigating the Overlap Between PM and BA Tasks. Project Managers and business analysts are recognizing the symbiotic nature of their relationships, where to paint the line on their responsibilities and how to work together on areas of overlap.

Talent Management Impact on Business ROI. With the pending exodus of thousands of baby boomers over the next several years compounded by millennials entering the workforce, today’s workers are motivated by a different set of incentives than their tenured colleagues. Organizations need to develop a talent management strategy incorporating recruiting and retaining talent to improve business performance.

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