A paper presented to the International Seminar on Project Management for Developing Countries, September 4 to 6, 1991, in New Delhi, India. The audience was made up of mostly construction people, but much of the following content could equally apply to large projects in other areas of application.

Published here November 2001

Executive Summary  | Index | Part 1 | Part 2 | Conclusions | References

Executive Summary

Project management is a process by which certain predetermined goals are achieved. It is simply the means to an end.

On a small project, the senior executive management of the sponsoring organization (the Owner, or client) may be sufficiently familiar with the details and on-going progress that they are satisfied that the project is proceeding as expected. On a larger, longer, more complex project, such close contact may not be feasible. How then can the required degree of comfort (comfort level) be ensured? Rely on project status reports and telephone calls to the project manager?

Perhaps, but not always! In any case, what if the project status reports clearly indicate that the project is not going according to plan? Either way, some form of independent project management assessment and recommendations are well advised. Such an assessment should be designed to scrutinize the project's management, test its effectiveness, and if found wanting, to make recommendations for corrective action.

Part 1 of this paper describes some of the considerations involved in making an assessment of a project's management. It includes how, when and why, and hence the benefits and possible justification. Part 2 takes a structured look at some of the questions that should be raised.


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