Bad project management can kill a company. One day a company comes in with a bang and the next day it goes with a poof. In times like these,
with the current poor economic climate, it is getting very hard for
organisations to keep up the revenues, sometimes even hard to break
even. Management of projects in the right way can help achieve goals
and keep organisations proactive.
Technology is supposed to solve problems. That's why the products are
referred to as 'technology solutions'. Management is meant to draw the
path everyone in the company has to follow in order to use the
solutions to reach the intended goals. And management usually creates
the framework before the IT enables its various modules. Keeping this
horse and cart example in mind, once you have your organisation
running, the management of IT comes into play. There are policies and
procedures to make the maintenance easier.
Here's what you need to be looking at when talking about IT management
within the organisation:
- Asset management: keeping track of all hardware and software assets
- Change management: ensuring that system changes do not interfere
- Disaster recovery and contingencies: enabling the continuity of
systems outage or loss of critical data.
- End-user support: being able to resolve technical problems and
the technology is supposed to make their work easier.
- Security management: ensuring the integrity of data and the
- Software licensing control: ensuring compliance with licensing laws.
open source which now has more user-friendly interface with Ubuntu and
- Systems administration: ensuring that user-ids are current, access
Remember that password theft usually takes place because poor password
security is practised and this is generally a human error.
- Systems management: ensuring that hardware and software
- Systems are optimised for certain operating systems. Try and match
- Technology standards management: setting product standards that
- Virus protection: ensuring that workstations are protected from
However, simply listing these down doesn't mean that all the IT within
the company has been taken care of. Because there is so much human
involvement and alignment with business required, there are more
vulnerabilities than holes in a sponge which have to be planned for.
Without contingencies in place, the management of IT across the board
becomes an enormous challenge.
But before you attempt to identify the challenges that the management
of IT has, you have to better understand what kind of hierarchy runs
your IT department and ultimately, what the role of IT is in the
progress of a company. Depending on the expertise you have in terms of
the technology workforce, the size and budgets available to them, you
can better determine exactly what your IT 'structure' looks like.
Traditionally, IT is described as being centralised, decentralised,
outsourced or hybrid. Once you figure out what role IT has to play
within itself, only then will you know how many of the processes it is
actually responsible for and how much it can be accountable for. An
organisation which has a centralised IT structure means there is only
one reporting authority responsible for all IT functions. A
decentralised plan simply means that there are multiple entities
responsible and accountable for all functions across the organisation.
Could be that purchasing and deployment are taken care of by one
authority, while maintenance and training are conducted by another. By
implementing the best practices for effective IT management, you
should be hoping to achieve the following:
Bring management costs down.
- Maintain all systems and workstations as available an accessible as
- Keep your IT management guidelines as updated as possible and your
- Have the IT management guidelines enforced from the very top, as
will you achieve true business and IT alignment.
- Be sure and implement IT management practices for the sake of what
because you are technically savvy.
Project management works, based on three basic constraints: scope,
cost and time. Often, many organisations fail because they don't have
their scopes defined. When the scope is not set, the cost can never be
calculated. Adding onto the scope will maximise the cost and time,
which is not a favourable situation for growing organisations.
A project manager ensures that all the tasks are well-documented and
properly time-lined so that the organisation can achieve its set
targets. The manager also defines the strategy of an organisation on a
long-term basis rather than working on ad-hoc policies.
IT management, which is a function of project management, is practised
in an even more informal manner. However, with more companies
competing with players in the regional or global level, the role that
technology continues to play in an organisation will continue to be
more critical. We will require not just good project managers, but
also technology-savvy project managers who understand and appreciate a
structured approach to IT management within the organisation.
While it isn't the only component involved, technology plays a vital
role as far as project management is concerned. Software solutions
such as Microsoft Project, Primavera and IBM Portfolio Management are
some of the leading software tools specially built for better
management. And with software solutions becoming more powerful, they
help with analysis and management, beyond the basic output.
With customisation options, a powerful project management software can
help you to be proactive with your decision-making, to foresee the
impact an action may have on the project. Technology alone of course
cannot handle the project management within any organisation. It is
basically the combination of sound policies, hands-on technology and
people who know what they want out of that technology. At the end of
the day, these are only a collection of tools that can be used. If the
right policies are implemented with the right technology, an
organisation can achieve a revenue gain of as much as 20 per cent
One of the common mistakes that many companies make while implementing
project management policies is the fact that they judge the progress
with the shortcomings. Companies are getting aware of different ways
they can implement the project management policies but the resolve
needs to come from the management. They need to understand what is
exactly required to set up a project management office.
IT projects commonly fail because the people are not trained to use
the technology. If the project plan is good, you have properly
resourced it, trained it, timed it and if it meets the timelines, you
retain your customers and make your profit. It's a methodology that
can change the way many organisations work and ensure a better and
efficient working environment.
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