How to start managing your projects more effectively

Staying a step ahead: Measuring your project effectiveness using the LEADING indicators (instead of the lagging)


“75% of IT organizations have little oversight over their project portfolios and employ non repeatable, chaotic planning processes.”


Portfolio management can help you gain control of your IT projects and deliver meaningful value to the business. Projects need to be constantly monitored to assess effectiveness and ensure they remain on track. But what about IT Governance? Effective portfolio management and IT Governance should take a holistic view of a company’s overall IT strategy, as well as taking into account the individual project’s goals and alignment to strategy.

Effective IT governance requires tracking cost, schedule and quality, the lagging indicators, to know when to respond when problems occur. But, if the goal is to avoid problems in the first place, then IT governance should be focused on monitoring the leading indicators – the factors that drive results and that CAN BE managed to avoid problems. What are these factors? Based on research by Dr. Leon Kappelman and his team, these factors include requirements comprehension, process adherence, stakeholder involvement and several other basics.

Using an early warning signs indicator like APO can help make it easy to understand what really matters. Being able to monitor, react and report on it, but it’s a lot to expect of project managers. They are already overworked. Being able to compile, process and act on that future-focused data is fast becoming critical to organizations that are competing on rapid, consistent and reliable performance.

Automated Project Office (APO) consolidates your project performance data (lagging indicators) with relevant project status feedback (leading indicators) from project stakeholders.

APO collects relevant feedback by sending out short weekly assessments to project participants. The assessment questions are based on the project early warning signs research of Dr. Kappelman. Feedback data is turned into measures that are tracked week to week and acted on as needed. Learn how a virtual project office can help you track the “leading indicators” to identify issues before they become large problems.


Sources: “Portfolio Management Done Right” Todd Datz http://www.cio.com/article/2440051/it-organization/portfolio-management-done-right.html, Early Warning Signs of IT Project Failure: The Dominant Dozen, Leon A. Kappelman, Robert McKeeman, and Lixuan Zhang, http://ism-journal.com/ITToday/projectfailure.pdf

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