Project management is an ever changing field. Keeping track of the regular changes and developments is almost impossible to do, with more and more information being released all the time with regards to the best ways to practice project management. While the success of our projects has improved dramatically in the last 20 years or so there is still a long way to go. Today, IT projects are seeing a success rate of less than 50%, which means that we’re not out of the woods yet when it comes to successfully seeing a project from beginning to end. Perhaps with the following changes predicted for the future of project management we can expect to see in the next few years we will begin to see the success rate grow:
Less focus on metrics and more on benefits
In the past, the success of a project was typically defined by three different features; completing tasks, meeting deadlines and working within the budget. However, more has come to light about the complexity of measuring a project’s success and more characteristics are being included. For project managers, this means that more targets need to be met and more conversation needs to be had with people outside of the project team.
Prioritising quality is one a project manager’s most vital responsibilities, but understandably this can take a back seat when working on large or complex projects. In the future of project management, additional measures of success include the benefits of the project – to the customer and to the organisation. It is expected that with these kept in mind during a project, there will be less of a chance of too many changes being decided on during the working process and more effective solutions will be found to resolve any issues the team may encounter.
Get the right kind of training
All projects and all teams require different management styles while, in the past, organisations and project managers have fallen into the trap of thinking ‘It worked before, therefore there’s no need to change it’. Many project management techniques and strategies that are still used today are woefully outdated and desperately require an update. Because of this, we can expect to see a lot more training in the future of project management. Many project management qualifications are updated with new information and enhanced regularly, which means that they always take into consideration the needs of a modern project and team.
As well as more training, the type of training that project managers receive is expected to change. Because many organisations cannot afford to continue training and retraining their project managers, the qualifications they choose will likely lean towards those that supply more adaptable skills that can be used across a range of different projects. PRINCE2 Agile provides an impressively broad skillset which we can expect to see more of in the future. It has all of the structure and control of PRINCE2 combined with the flexibility and adaptability of Agile that gives project managers a well-rounded set of skills that they can use in a complete range of projects and adjust accordingly.
The technology is here, but can you use it?
Project management today is not done on paper alone as it once was. Project management is done almost entirely differently thanks to file sharing programmes and the many means of digital communication. However, tech has managed to go a step further and more management programmes are being utilised in organisations. While many of these programmes are still in the early stages of development, the amount of difference they have already made to process is a strong indication that technology will become a main feature of project management in the future. Programmes currently in development and already available include tools for task management, time management, file sharing, messaging, analytics, scheduling and so much more. As a result, we can expect IT skills to become a vital asset to project managers and training to use these programmes will be in high demand very soon.