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March 10, 2006

Measuring Project Success

The way we measure success of projects has a lot to do with the issues of accountability and ethics in corporations today. How do we say projects are successful? Why do we say a project is complete when the project tasks are completed? Why is measuring the success of the project included in the list of project tasks? Corporations always complain about consultants who implement or make recommendations about projects but are not around to see if the project was successful. Why do such client organizations pay the consultants before measuring the success of the projects? Why are such measuring mechanisms included in the contracts?

To introduce ethical behavior, ownership and accountability, our fundamental approach to project management and measuring the success of projects should change. A project should not be marked complete till the success parameters (ROI, production improvements, savings, cost control, efficiency etc) meet the required criteria. Once a solution has been implemented, instead of saying the project is complete, the project should go into the critical phase of "Project Measurement". It is only at the end of this stage we can call the project complete and both celebrate the success of the project or measure the losses. Consulting companies and consultants should be paid after this stage. This approach will promote accountability and corporate ethics.

Below are some resources which describe project success measurement, tips for better measuring processes and factors affecting project success. Though most of these resources are quite valuable, not all of them prescribe project success measurement as a step in project management or as an ongoing exercise.

Project Management Partners
Tasmanian Government Project Management Guidelines
Tips from Technical Pathways
Advogato Project Management advice

Posted by vdakshin at March 10, 2006 06:41 PM

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