Article #214 Using Common Sense to Attain the Great Value of Accountability When Performing Everyday Project Management Processes in Delivering Capital Projects

One of the key requirements in delivering capital projects is enforcing accountability in reviewing and approving the everyday project management processes that could involve different individuals representing the different entities that are part of the project. Those are the hundreds of processes that relate to project communications, schedule, cost, contracts, quality assurance and quality control, health and safety, risks and issues among others.

Project owners are usually the entity that will be impacted most when the review and approval accountability is not enforced. This is true due to the mere fact that the project owner is the only entity who will have contractual agreements with the other entities involved in delivering the project including project management consultant, engineering consultants, contractors and suppliers. Therefore, when any of those entities cause harm to another entity when approvals and actions are delayed, the project owner will become the entity liable for those actions.

Therefore, the project owner should always demand having access to a real-time single version of the truth report that detail the status of every review and approval task regardless who needs to perform this task and to which project management process it belongs to. The out-of-the-box Workflow Inbox report that is generated by the PMWeb Project Management Information System (PMIS) is an example of such reports. This report can be further improved by coloring delayed tasks in red, due tasks in cyan and yet to be due tasks in green. The report can also be modified to include more data fields.

This report will be automatically generated from the workflow tasks status captured in the relevant project management process. The workflow tab for each process, details the status of workflow steps including the actual date and time of when each workflow step was completed, by who, role, date due, action, comments among others. This information will be automatically updated when a workflow task is performed by its designated project team member.

The workflow for each process will be created in PMWeb Workflow module where the workflow steps, duration of each step, actions available for each step, sequence for performing the steps among others are established. The workflow could also include approval authority levels which are usually associated with processes that have financial data. In addition, conditions can be added to determine who should be involved in reviewing the process depending on the process category values. For example, if the Request for Information (RFI) category is mechanical, then it needs to be reviewed by the mechanical engineer whereas if the category was electrical, then it will be reviewed by the electrical engineer.

About the Authorfounder

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 in excess of 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 in 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) and Earned Value Professional (EVP) from the American Association of Cost Engineers (AACE) and Green Project Management (GPM).

Bassam holds a Masters in Engineering Administration (Construction Management) with Faculty Commendation, George Washington University, Washington, D.C., USA, Bachelor in Civil Engineering – Kuwait University, Kuwait and has attended many executive management programs at Harvard Business School, Boston, USA and London Business School, London, UK.

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