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Case Study Background

Discuss about the Johnstaff–Federation Square Case Study.

Projects involve massive resources and several stakeholders that need to work together to achieve project completion. Project governance enables integration of different stakeholders and resource to effectively complete a project within planned time and efficient uses of resources (Too, and Weaver, 2014). Integrated governance is a description of a structure for informal and formal relations aimed at managing affairs through collaboration approach between difference agencies (Muller, 2017). Integration governance entails working together with informal relationships, coordinated relationships, cooperative relationships, collaborative relationships, and partnership in project planning, implementation and evaluation (Crawford, and Helm, 2009). The concepts of integrated governance join gaps that exist between different stakeholders when they are working together in a project. Effective governance therefore provides a mechanism for directing, monitoring, and checking plan and execution of projects throughout their project life cycle (Zou, and Zhang, 2009).

The following report analyzes a Federation Square project case study. This will involve a detailed discuss of the case study background and addressing project governance gaps. The report will also involve application of governance framework to the case study. The report will use the Federation Square case study by Johnstaff, previous research and scholarly journals to analyze application of integrated governance framework in planning and execution of the project.

The Johnstaff Case Study on Federation Square was to outline the series of events that the organization was involved in to completion of the project. The Federation Square project was a government project that was under the Victorians State Government. The project was located at Flinders and Swanson Streets in Melbourne. The Federation Square was a major icon project that the government aimed to redevelop the site that was an old Gas and Fuel Corporation building. This was meant to develop a range of cultural, commercial, recreation and communication facilities. The project was plan was announced in 1996 by Premier Jeff Kennett and was expected to take six years. The completion of the federation Square was opened 2002 and used a budget of $395 million from the planned $110 million. The project budget was estimated to have risen to $473 million in 2003. The Johnstaff was contracted by the government to provide project management service from 1999 to 2001.

The Federation Square project involved several stakeholders; designer who were from an international design competitions, architectures, government, project manager, Managing contractor and Quality Surveyor. These stakeholders needed to work together for the success of the project. The Johnstaff was contracted by the State government to offer Alternate Dispute Resolution services. This was as a result of substantial claims from various Trade Contractors and the Managing Contractor. The Johnstaff had a responsibility of providing value management advice and help the State Government to reign over the spiraling project costs.

Governance Gap

The Johnstaff first role at the project was resolution of $60 million from Trade Contractor that were as a result of prolongation claims. The claims were recommended by the Project Manager, Quality Surveyor and managing Contractor. The Johnstaff provided contractual and programming analysis that established true contractual entitlement. This led to successful negotiations that settled the claims. The Johnstaff also played key role in settling contractual claims made by Managing Contractor without need for litigation. Lastly, they facilitated several value Management workshops together with the Senior Government officials, managing Contractor, and design consultants. The Johnstaff achievement was project claims were resolved without need for litigation at $5 million and it processes and facilitations resolved several significant design discrepancies that helped the Government contain project costs.  

The Federation Square project was faced with several issues that caused governance gap. The governance gap would have hiked the project budget and delay completion time period of the project. Before the State Government contracted Johnstaff, the project execution process was having several claims against the government. The first issue that caused governance gap in Federation Square project was change of design. The initial design for the project design was changed and a complex and unique plan was adopted. The project adopted a complex design that was unique which was selected from an International design competition. The change of initial design changed all other aspects of the project. This meant that the resources and time had to be changed to match the design that was viewed to be superior and preferred. The second issue that caused governance gap was change in budget. The initial budget for the project changed from $110 million to $473 million at the completion of the project. The State Government estimated budget was lower than the actual budget of the project. It was recorded that the budget deficit was caused by adoption of “fast track’ approach to project construction and use of complex designed that was unique (Fleming, and Koppelman, 2016). The project sponsors had to go back and source for funds to continue with the execution of the project. The third cause of governance gap was prolongation of the project. The project was planned to take only six years which was prolonged by more than two years. There were delays that caused some stakeholders to seek compensations. For instance, Trade Contractors and Managing Contractors raised claims against the State Government. Another issue that caused governance gap is issues of relationship between different stakeholders in the Federation Square project. The relationships lacked effective communication that was undermining the timely completion of the project and increasing costs (Kerzner, and Kerzner, 2017). These issues led to conflicts that needed resolutions in the process of executing the projects. The project required collaboration, cooperation, communication, and negotiations to resolve the governance gap for the success of the project.

Application of Governance Framework

Project require combined efforts working together to deliver towards a common goal. Integrated governance implies that stakeholders work mutually to ensure the processes are undertaken for project completion (Hsu, and Hsueh, 2009). The Federation Square project was involving several parties who came together to compete the project. The government was the sponsor while other actors such as Managing Contractor, design consultant, Quality Surveyors, trace Contractors in the Federation Square project. The government made the plan that was supposed to be used while the Managing Contractor was responsible to the execution of the project. These stakeholders were therefore involved in directing, monitoring, and checking the project plan. The following case study applies the governance framework in analyzing the federation Project Case Study. These integrated governance factors include; networking, Collaboration, Coordination, Cooperation and Partnership.

The first governance factor is networking. This is the first step of integrated governance and it involves dialogue over issues for joint efforts in accomplishing a specific task. Networking enable project owners to connect with projects expects who assist in planning and execute the project (Jin, 2009). The Victorian State government networked to find suitable experts to implement the project. After planning, the government got it design from an international competition of designer when it adopted the best design. Networking enabled the government successful identify suitable contractors and consulting partners to implement the Federation Square Project. From the case study, the government was excellent in networking to get the best experts and design for the Federation Square magnificent project.

The second governance factor is cooperation. Cooperation is an extension of networking. It refers to continuum joint efforts that go beyond a dialogue between stakeholders to attempts to work together. Cooperation also involves informal relationships that are aimed to enhancing joint efforts towards delivering a common goal (Kaliba, Muya, and Mumba, 2009). In the Federation Square project, there were different stakeholders that did not cooperate to the last date of project completion. They were impatient and proceeded with legal charges against the government. Both Managing Contractor and Trades Contractors presented claims against the State Government. This show there was low levels of cooperation because the claims could have been solved informally without filing claims that were likely to cost the project sponsor.


The third governance factor is coordination. Coordination is a prime solution to problems arising from implementation of large government projects (Lahdenperä, 2012).  It reconciles and harmonizes divergent interest to work toward a common objective. Coordination refers to a sense of cooperating, negotiating, overseeing, and means of panning a strategic or project activity. The Federation Square project had issues of coordination before Johnstaff was contracted by the government. The coordination lacked between different stakeholders that undermined the sense of cooperation. This factor could have increased the cost of the projects without the intervention of Johnstaff.

The fourth integrated governance factor is collaboration. Collaboration is a network mode that I based upon trust, informality, and sense of having a common purpose (Tabassi, and Bakar, 2009). Collaboration is the regeneration of efforts towards a common result. In the Federation Square project, several stakeholders responded after the introduction of a project management firm. The Johnstaff enabled different stakeholders regenerate their efforts and focus on a common goal of completing the project.

The sixth governance factor is partnership. Partnership consolidation and creation is based on hierarchy upon which assertion of authority and status is differentiated and formalized in terms of procedures (Leach, 2014). Partnership is therefore re-assertion of network governance mode in maintaining agency commitment, staff employment, and community involvement. Partnership requires all stakeholders’ commitment by reassertion to a project objectives and completion. Some of the barriers of partnership in project governance are budget constraints, unwillingness in partnership, limited resources, and lack or limited capacity. In Federation Square project governance, the project lacked partnership that almost escalated   the cost of the project. There was lack of clarity between partnerships working in the project that led to issues of filling claims from different stakeholders. The government failed to maintain consistency in funding the project that prolonged the project making contractors impatient who opted for compensation. The Johnstaff services on project management re-asserted the partnership of different t stakeholders in the Federation Square project. Therefore, the partnership in the network governance mode was enabled by Johnstaff that led to the success of the federation Square project.

Conclusion

 Integrated governance is an important part of project management. Integrated governance is a description of a structure for informal and formal relations and aims at managing affairs of a project through a collaboration approach between difference agencies. Integration governance entails working together with informal relationships, coordinated relationships, cooperative relationships, collaborative relationships, and partnership in project planning, implementation and evaluation. From the case study, the Federation Square project lacked projected governance until the government contracted Johnstaff to offer project management services. The Federation Square project experienced change of design, understatement of budget, and prolongation of the project. These issues caused conflicts that lead to governance gap in the project. Several claims were filed against the government that aimed to compensate contractors. The governance gap led to the government hiring Johnstaff who worked on Alternate Dispute Resolution services to the project. From the report analysis on application of governance framework, the project lacked an integrated governance approach. The introduction of Johnstaff enabled the project to have an integrated approach to project management. Therefore, it can be concluded that project require an integrated governance approach to timely and cost efficiently meet their objective and get completed.

References

Crawford, L.H. and Helm, J., 2009. Government and governance: The value of project management in the public sector. Project Management Journal, 40(1), pp.73-87.

Fleming, Q.W. and Koppelman, J.M., 2016, December. Earned value project management. Project Management Institute.

Hsu, F.M. and Hsueh, C.C., 2009. Measuring relative efficiency of government-sponsored R&D projects: A three-stage approach. Evaluation and program planning, 32(2), pp.178-186.

Jin, X.H., 2009. Determinants of efficient risk allocation in privately financed public infrastructure projects in Australia. Journal of Construction Engineering and Management, 136(2), pp.138-150.

Kaliba, C., Muya, M. and Mumba, K., 2009. Cost escalation and schedule delays in road construction projects in Zambia. International Journal of Project Management, 27(5), pp.522-531.

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

Lahdenperä, P., 2012. Making sense of the multi-party contractual arrangements of project partnering, project alliancing and integrated project delivery. Construction Management and Economics, 30(1), pp.57-79.

Leach, L.P., 2014. Critical chain project management. Artech House.

Muller, R., 2017. Project governance. Routledge.

Tabassi, A.A. and Bakar, A.A., 2009. Training, motivation, and performance: The case of human resource management in construction projects in Mashhad, Iran. International journal of project management, 27(5), pp.471-480.

Too, E.G. and Weaver, P., 2014. The management of project management: A conceptual framework for project governance. International Journal of Project Management, 32(8), pp.1382-1394.

Zou, P.X. and Zhang, G., 2009. Managing risks in construction projects: life cycle and stakeholder perspectives. International Journal of Construction Management, 9(1), pp.61-7

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