Xploring the role of production management concepts for managing projects the "divide and Conquer" approach

Boaz Ronen, Thomas Lechler, Edward A. Stohr

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionpeer-review

Abstract

We have come to accept that approximately onethird of projects are successful, one-third of projects suffer from overruns of time or cost or failed delivery of desired functionality and fully one-third are abandoned as complete failures. These dismal statistics have defied years of project management research and all manner of innovative ideas ranging from the early introduction of critical path methods, to the more recent critical chain methodologies, agile software development ideas and much behavioral research on project leadership and teams. Moreover, to manage expertise and share scarce resources the majority of projects today are executed in matrixed organizations with their attendant problems of confused lines of responsibility and complex relationships between the project managers responsible for the timely completion of projects and functional managers responsible for the management of resources. In this paper, we outline a three-pronged attack on these problems. Our main supposition is that projects with different size, complexity and economic or strategic importance should be managed differently. Important large projects should be assigned dedicated resources and managed as projects using accepted project management techniques. Medium-sized projects should be managed in matrixed organizations, while small repetitive projects should not be managed as projects at all. Rather they should be managed using techniques borrowed from production and process management. The paper develops the conceptual underpinnings for these ideas and describes how projects in the latter two categories can be best organized and managed. Our "divide and conquer" approach should help management deal with the need for a faster and more sure-footed response to the pressures for change in the face of global competition and ever changing technology.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationPICMET 2017 - Portland International Conference on Management of Engineering and Technology
Subtitle of host publicationTechnology Management for the Interconnected World, Proceedings
EditorsTimothy R. Anderson, Kiyoshi Niwa, Dundar F. Kocaoglu, Tugrul U. Daim, Dilek Cetindamar Kozanoglu, Gary Perman, Harm-Jan Steenhuis
PublisherInstitute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers Inc.
Pages1-7
Number of pages7
ISBN (Electronic)9781890843366
DOIs
StatePublished - 29 Nov 2017
Event2017 Portland International Conference on Management of Engineering and Technology, PICMET 2017 - Portland, United States
Duration: 9 Jul 201713 Jul 2017

Publication series

NamePICMET 2017 - Portland International Conference on Management of Engineering and Technology: Technology Management for the Interconnected World, Proceedings
Volume2017-January

Conference

Conference2017 Portland International Conference on Management of Engineering and Technology, PICMET 2017
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CityPortland
Period9/07/1713/07/17

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