Project Management

The 5 Greatest Impacts to Project Management in the Past Five Years

“What has had the most significant impact on project management in the last five years?” – that was the question. The answer, which came from over 2000 project managers around the world, has at least five facets according to a report by Arras People. Lindsay Scott shares these five impacts in an article for Business 2 Community.

5 Years / 5 Impacts

  1. The recession
  2. The rise of agile methodology
  3. The publicity of large, successful projects
  4. Organizational change
  5. Software advancements

The global financial crisis that started in 2008-2009 kicked off a string of changes in the profession of project management including, but not limited to, the large-scale adoption of project portfolio management as a PM strategy, and an attempt to make businesses more accountable and project management more professional. An increased focus on the people side of business coupled with greater financial accountability led to a higher demand for PMs, and coincided with a jump in PM certifications and training. As a possible consequence of the recession-spurred restructuring and the mass funding decreases that took place in its aftermath, there arose an increased focus on good governance practice, as well as virtual teams and outsourcing. In a word, seeking to attain financial efficiency, the business world has become “projectified.”

There is also some evidence to suggest a connection between the popularity of agile methodology and the recession. Nonetheless, there remains a lack of understanding in the PM community about how exactly agile is benefitting / will benefit the practice. All mysteries aside, a string of success stories are helping to buoy project management. These successes are not isolated and involve complex and high-profile projects, giving the profession a bit of a facelift in the face of traditionally high failure rates.

And lastly, an expanding tide of software tools has carried the profession from a lonely island of Excel spreadsheets and Gantt charts to a vast continent of corporate-level enterprise systems to individual cloud-based applications and everything in between. The overall positive advancements signaled by the survey’s participants (even in the face of economic downturn) should be a welcome auger for project management during the second half of this decade.

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