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 Describe the Effective Project Management for Successful Implementation

Significance of Project Management Frameworks in Governments

Over the years, different countries across the globe have shown significant dynamics in different aspects, social, cultural, economic, demographic, political and others, as Much of these aspects and the overall welfare of the population of the countries can be attributed to the working of the government policies, plans and strategic frameworks and the ways in which the different activities and responsibilities of managing different aspects of a country are managed by different departments of the government of the concerned country (Pearce, Barbier and Markandya 2013).

In this context, it becomes extremely crucial for the different departments of the government to efficiently carry out the responsibilities and design as well as implement the projects and policies in their domain with the overall objective of improving the overall welfare of the people in the concerned country as well as of the society as a whole (Beck 2013). In this context, much of the success of the implementation of the plans and policies of the governments of different countries depends on how efficiently these projects are managed by the same. This, in turn, highlights the importance of efficient project management frameworks in the countries (Becerra, Cavallo and Scartascini 2012).

Keeping this into consideration, the concerned research proposes to analyse the significance of project management for successful implementation of the plans and policies of the governments in general, specifically focussing on the project management practices which exist in the municipalities of the United Arab Emirates, in the contemporary period (Span et al. 2012). The concerned research also proposes to assess the quality of the project management practices in the municipalities in the concerned country.

In the contemporary period, with the dynamics in social, cultural, economic and political scenarios of the countries developing considerably, the responsibilities of the governments of the countries are also increasingly becoming important. In this context, the United Arab Emirates being a significantly developed as well as populated country, the policies and projects designed and implemented by the different departments of the government of the concerned country, have considerable implications on the welfare of the population of the country, which is in turn, booming (Piven and Cloward 2012). The municipalities, being urban administrative divisions with the powers of self-governance, play considerable role in implementing and monitoring administrative projects, whose success depend substantially on the efficiency of the project management framework and the practices adopted by the municipalities of the concerned government in these aspects (Normann and Vasström 2012).

Objectives of the Research

The proposed research primarily aims to assess the project management practices present in the municipalities of the UAE, thereby analysing the advantages, strengths and limitations of the same and recommending solutions for the probable limitations in this scenario.

The objectives of the proposed research are as follows:

  • To examine the roles of proper project management frameworks for successful implementation of the plans and policies of the governments
  • To assess the practices of project management in the municipalities of the UAE
  • To analyse the factors in the project management framework of the municipalities of the UAE which contributes to success as well as failures in the design, implementation and monitoring of the projects of the same
  • To recommend relevant changes in the project management practices in the municipalities of the UAE to remove the existing bottlenecks

The primary research question which the concerned study proposes to address, is as follows:

What are the common practices in the project management framework, present in the municipalities of the UAE and what are the strengths and weaknesses of the same?

The secondary research questions in this context are as follows:

What are the implications of project management practices on the success and failures of different policies and plans of the governments?

What are the best practices in project management scenario?

What are the bottlenecks present in the project management framework of the municipalities of the UAE?

How can the bottlenecks be removed by bringing changes in the project management practices in the municipalities of the UAE?

Over the years, the aspects of project management have gained immense significance and implications in every aspect, in both the private and public sectors of the countries across the globe (Schwalbe 2015). The dynamics and complexities of the projects, both in the private sectors as well as the public sectors of the countries across the globe, increasing and with the aspects of efficient project management gaining immense popularity and relevance, there remains considerable literary works and empirically supported scholarly evidence (Nicholas  and Steyn  2017). This section of the research proposal tries to conduct an extensive review of the existing literary works, with the objective to incorporate the perceptions and opinions present in these aspects.

There exist different notions and perceptions regarding the notion of project management and the operations which fall under the same. The primary and most comprehensive definition of the term, as can be seen in the work of Kerzner and Kerzner (2017), is that of the practice which include initiation, planning, controlling, executing as well as controlling the works in a project as well as the closing of the work, with the objective of attaining specific goals and success criteria of the concerned project within a particular and pre-specified period of time. The projects can be of various types, private, public, social welfare related, infrastructural, industrial, and commercial or others (Burke 2013).

The steps and stages of projects vary with respect to the requirements of the project as well as with respect to the project objectives and the areas in which the project ventures. However, there are in general several common project management process, which can be sequentially described as follows:

Literature Review

Initiation of a Project- The first phase of any project in general, is that of the initiation of the same. In this stage the conceptualisation of the project and its goals are defined in a broad perspective. In general, feasibility test is done for the projects in this stage and opinions and agreement from all the stakeholders associated with the project is sought for (Posavac,   2015). Post permission and agreement, project charter is created, which outline the basic purpose and requirements of the case.

Project Planning- This is one of the most significant phase of project management framework in general, which deals with the development of the roadmap for the project. There in general, remains various methods for setting up the project plan and goals. In this context, one of the most popular and widely used methods for designing the goals is known as S.M.A.R.T goals, which can be shown as follows:

Specific- The goals need to be specific, which can be set by addressing the following questions for the project:

  • Who
  • Where
  • What
  • Why
  • When

Measurable- The success of the project goals should be measurable.

Attainable- The goals and the ways of achieving them should be identified.

Realistic- The goals need to be realistic and feasible.

Timely- The planning framework needs to have a timeline for achieving the goals.

According to several literary evidences, this phase also includes defining of the project scopes and development of a project management plan (Serra and Kunc 2015). The project managers, in general, create the following tools for keeping the project on track for the rest of its tenure:

Scope Statement- This defines the needs, objectives, deliverables, benefits as well as the key milestones clearly.

Work Breakdown Schedule- This helps in visually representing the breakdown of the entire project into small manageable sections.

Communication Plan- If the projects have external stakeholders then proper and systematic communications among the team members and the stakeholders need to be set up, involving the deliverables as well as the project milestones.

Risk Management Plan- Any project comes with several anticipated as well as unanticipated risks, including those of cost estimates, budget related issues, customer’s review cycles, requirement for changes as well as resource dynamics which are needed to be considered and contingencies are needed to be planned (Badewi  2016).

Project Execution- This phase of any project is the most dynamic phase of the project management framework as in this phase the deliverables for the project are developed and completed. This phase consists of the following tasks, in general:

  • Team development
  • Assigning of the productive resources
  • Execution of the project management activities
  • Incorporating tracking systems
  • Executions of the task assignments
  • Meetings regarding status of the projects
  • Updating project schedule
  • Modification of project plans as per requirements

Project Management Process

Monitoring of Project Performance- This phase, in general being carried out simultaneously with the previous one, measures the progress and performance of the project and the alignment of the same with the project management plan (Harris et al 2018). For this, in general Key Performance Indicators (KPI) are used, the most common indicators of the same being as follows:

Project Objectives- Measuring whether the concerned project remains on schedule and meets the objectives of all the stakeholders.

Quality Deliverables- Measuring whether the deliverables are met.

Cost Tracking- Measuring whether the budget of the project is on track and whether the same can be completed within the scheduled time.

Project Performance- Monitoring the changes in the project and addressing the issues as well as unforeseen hurdles cropping up in the concerned project.

Project Closure- This is, in general, the final phase of the project, where the contracts are completed and terminated after compensation (Harrison and Lock  2017). The success and failures of the projects are also evaluated, which help in learning the improvements which can be done in the future projects of the concerned organization.

The project management knowledge, in a generalised framework, draws on several key areas, which can be seen to be as follows:

There exist different perceptions and opinions regarding the significance and importance of project management frameworks in different types of private and public projects, of which the primary ones, pointed out by a significant share of the scholarly evidences are as follows:

  • Strategic Alignment- The project management framework helps in keeping the project and its deliverables aligned to the objectives and goals of the different stakeholders of the concerned project and also monitors whether the project delivers real values (Tarhini,   Ammar and Tarhini  2015).
  • Leadership- Project management framework also brings direction and proper leadership to the projects.
  • Keeping Realistic- An efficient and proper project management framework helps to keep the expectations regarding a project around the realistic capacities of delivering the relevant outcomes (Osei-Kyei,   and Chan  2015).
  • Quality- The quality control of the different components of a project is also facilitated by the project management framework.
  • Risk Management- Any project comes with unanticipated contingencies and hurdles, which if not taken into consideration appropriately, can have negative implications on the project’s outcome. However, the presence of project management framework, help in mitigating the same considerably, through monitoring and identification of the possible risks.
  • Continuous Vigilance- The project management framework facilitates constant vigilance and tracking the activities as well as performance of any project and also helps in carrying out the project related activities in a systematic manner (Berman  2015).
  • Learning from the outcomes- The success and failures of a project are incorporated in the project management framework of a company, which in turn, helps the same to carry out and execute the future projects more efficiently and less erroneously.

The aim of the proposed research being that of studying the project management practices present in the municipalities of the UAE and evaluating the quality, strengths and limitations of the same, it is important to know about the same and their activities (Warner and Sullivan, 2017). The UAE Municipalities, referring to the municipalities of all UAE as a whole collectively, consists of the following municipality bodies:

  • Abu Dhabi City Municipality
  • Dubai Municipality
  • Al Ain City Municipality
  • Sharjah Municipality
  • Al Dhafra Region Municipality
  • Municipality and Planning Department Ajman
  • Fujairah Municipality
  • Umm AL Quwain Municipality

The primary objectives and goals of these municipalities in the UAE can be shown to be as follows:

  • Developing innovating and welfare increasing municipal regulations and policies
  • Regulation of registration of lands and development of real estates
  • Ensuring safety and public health
  • Incorporating the components of environmental sustainability in the urban development planning
  • Strengthening community relationship
  • Improvement of the corporate culture and commercial developments
  • Providing municipal services and managing the assets and resources efficiently

The existing literatures and scholarly evidences, however, do not indicate towards the project management frameworks and practices which are present with the UAE Municipalities and the credibility, strengths and weaknesses of the same, which the concerned study proposes to address.

The proposed research tries to adapt the following research methodological framework to make the findings robust, authentic and contributing to the objectives of the concerned study.

The concerned research proposes to adopt the Interpretivism research philosophy for exploring in-depth the aspects and practices in the project management framework in the UAE Municipalities and for evaluating the same.

Monitoring Project Performance

As the study proposes to explore in the arenas of the project management practices present in the UAE municipalities it aims to take a descriptive research design as the same helps in analysing the different aspects of the concerned area of interest.

For the purpose of the study, primary as well as secondary data are proposed to be collected and analysed. For the purpose of collection of primary data regarding the various aspects of the project management practices of the UAE, relevant personnel in the municipalities are proposed to be interviewed (Bryson 2018). The respondents will be selected with the help of random sampling. On the other hand, secondary data are intended to be collected regarding the success, failures and performances of the projects of the same, are intended to be collected from authentic and reliable journals, articles, reports as well as statistical databases.

The primary data to be collected in the form of in-depth interviews with the selected respondents is proposed to be of qualitative type, including the non-numerical aspects of the project management framework (Badewi 2016). For secondary data, both qualitative as well as quantitative types of data will be collected from the authentic sources.

The qualitative primary data are proposed to be analysed with the help of NVivo, while for the purpose of analysis of numerical data, statistical software SPSS will be used.

The proposed research is expected to have the limitations of sample size and time constraints and another issue which the concerned research can be expected to face is that of confidentiality of information as the officials the research intends to interview may not disclose crucial details regarding their projects and the outcomes of the same.

      The concerned research proposes to abide by the ethical norms, considering the following ethical aspects:

  • The respondents will be selected by random sampling to remove any intended or unintended bias.
  • The confidentiality of the data collected will be maintained to respect the integrity of the respondents.
  • Only authentic and trusted sources will be referred to for collection of secondary data.
  • The findings will be unbiasedly and impartially interpreted.

Conducting the concerned research may have the risk of accumulation of unnecessary as well as redundant or false information, which have to be kept into consideration and while collecting the information, so as to consider only the authentic ones.

The proposed research if conducted appropriately, is expected to find and discuss about the project management practices, which exist in the Municipalities of the UAE, their strengths, weaknesses, and scopes of improvements in these aspects and is also expected to recommend solutions for the existing bottlenecks in these aspects. 

References 

Badewi, A., 2016. The impact of project management (PM) and benefits management (BM) practices on project success: Towards developing a project benefits governance framework. International Journal of Project Management, 34(4), pp.761-778.

Becerra, O., Cavallo, E. and Scartascini, C., 2012. The politics of financial development: The role of interest groups and government capabilities. Journal of Banking & Finance, 36(3), pp.626-643.

Beck, T., 2013. Finance, growth and fragility: the role of government. International Journal of Banking, Accounting and Finance, 5(1-2), pp.49-77.

Berman, E., 2015. Performance and productivity in public and nonprofit organizations. Routledge.

Bryson, J.M., 2018. Strategic planning for public and nonprofit organizations: A guide to strengthening and sustaining organizational achievement. John Wiley & Sons.

Burke, R., 2013. Project management: planning and control techniques. New Jersey, USA.

Harris, J.L., Roussel, L.A., Dearman, C. and Thomas, T., 2018. Project planning and management. Jones & Bartlett Learning.

Harrison, F. and Lock, D., 2017. Advanced project management: a structured approach. Routledge.

Kerzner, H. and Kerzner, H.R., 2017. Project management: a systems approach to planning, scheduling, and controlling. John Wiley & Sons.

Nicholas, J.M. and Steyn, H., 2017. Project management for engineering, business and technology. Routledge.

Normann, R.H. and Vasström, M., 2012. Municipalities as governance network actors in rural communities. European planning studies, 20(6), pp.941-960.

Osei-Kyei, R. and Chan, A.P., 2015. Review of studies on the Critical Success Factors for Public–Private Partnership (PPP) projects from 1990 to 2013. International Journal of Project Management, 33(6), pp.1335-1346.

Pearce, D., Barbier, E. and Markandya, A., 2013. Sustainable development: economics and environment in the Third World. Routledge.

Piven, F.F. and Cloward, R., 2012. Regulating the poor: The functions of public welfare. Vintage.

Posavac, E.J., 2015. Program evaluation: Methods and case studies. Routledge.

Schwalbe, K., 2015. Information technology project management. Cengage Learning.

Serra, C.E.M. and Kunc, M., 2015. Benefits realisation management and its influence on project success and on the execution of business strategies. International Journal of Project Management, 33(1), pp.53-66.

Span, K.C., Luijkx, K.G., Schalk, R. and Schols, J.M., 2012. What governance roles do municipalities use in Dutch local social support networks?. Public Management Review, 14(8), pp.1175-1194.

Tarhini, A., Ammar, H. and Tarhini, T., 2015. Analysis of the critical success factors for enterprise resource planning implementation from stakeholders’ perspective: A systematic review. International Business Research, 8(4), p.25.

Warner, M. and Sullivan, R. eds., 2017. Putting partnerships to work: Strategic alliances for development between government, the private sector and civil society. Routledge

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