No one can doubt that the last thing a project stakeholder, and in particular those who are at the executive or leadership level, wants is to have surprises that reflect a change to the project milestone dates, budget, or any other agreed-on and approved project’s objectives. Surprises quickly erode confidence and create mistrust in the project management team’s capability to manage the work and keep key stakeholders fully informed of the true progress, issues, and needed actions.
Accurate and timely information is essential for the management of any project and in particular capital projects. Meaningful project reviews, progress monitoring, and performance evaluation simply cannot be carried out without having trustworthy real-time information on the project. An accurate and complete project management information system (PMIS) like PMWeb must exist to provide the basis for how the project is doing. Project stakeholders and other project team members cannot have the insight to make better and faster-informed decisions without relevant and timely information.
What Information Is Needed to Manage a Capital Project?
The delivery of a capital project requires converting the idea that stakeholders had when the project investment was approved to deliver the products needed to achieve the desired results of the project. Many project management processes will be implemented during the project life cycle stages by the different entities, with conflicting interests and objectives, involved in executing the project. Those could include in addition of the project owner, project management consultant, engineering consultants, contractors, subcontractors, and suppliers among others. Performing those processes will generate the information needed to monitor, evaluate and report the project’s performance.
Capturing the Project Information Data
The different entities involved in delivering the project would need to have a project management information system (PMIS) like PMWeb to capture the data from the different project management processes that must be performed. PMWeb comes ready with most of the input forms needed to deliver a capital project as well as a custom form builder to create any additional input forms needed to capture the data needed to provide the needed information. For each input form, all supportive documents will be attached and links to other forms and imported MS Outlook emails will be created. This will ensure the quality and credibility of the captured data. To ensure the accountability of the captured data, each form will have a workflow to assign the steps for submitting, reviewing, and approving the captured data. Workflows will include branching conditions to enforce the project’s approval authority levels. Output forms can be designed in any desired form and format to ensure the formal communication of each project process information. Those forms can be digitally signed or printed to be wet-signed and stamped, then scanned and uploaded.
Sharing the Project Information
The data captured in each project management process will become trustworthy, real-time, and single-source data for sharing the project information. This information can be shared in different forms and formats depending on the recipient of the information.
Some stakeholders might be interested in detailed information that is specific to certain project management processes. For example, risk register, budget, budget adjustments, schedule, change orders, awarded contracts, and issues among many others. While other stakeholders might be interested in information on specific project functions, for example, project financial status, and project quality status among others. More senior stakeholders might be interested in information that provides an overall status of the project, program, or portfolio of projects’ performance.
About the Author
Bassam Samman, PMP, PSP, EVP, GPM is a Senior Project Management Consultant with more than 35-year service record providing project management and controls services to over 100 projects with a total value of over US $5 Billion. Those projects included Commercial, Residential, Education, and Healthcare Buildings and Infrastructure, Entertainment and Shopping Malls, Oil and Gas Plants and Refineries, Telecommunication, and Information Technology projects. He is thoroughly experienced in complete project management including project management control systems, computerized project control software, claims analysis/prevention, risk analysis/management (contingency planning), design, supervision, training, and business development.
Bassam is a frequent speaker on topics relating to Project Management, Strategic Project Management, and Project Management Personal Skills. Over the past 35 years, he has lectured at more than 350 events and courses at different locations in the Middle East, North Africa, Europe, and South America. He has written more than 250 articles on project management and project management information systems that were featured in international and regional magazines and newspapers. He is a co-founder of the Project Management Institute- Arabian Gulf Chapter (PMI-AGC) and has served on its board of directors for more than 6 years. He is a certified Project Management Professional (PMP) from the Project Management Institute (PMI), a certified Planning and Scheduling Professional (PSP), an Earned Value Professional (EVP) from the American Association of Cost Engineers (AACE), and a Green Project Management (GPM).
Bassam holds a Master’s in Engineering Administration (Construction Management) with Faculty Commendation, from George Washington University, Washington, D.C., USA, Bachelor in Civil Engineering – from Kuwait University, Kuwait, and has attended many executive management programs at Harvard Business School, Boston, USA, and London Business School, London, UK.