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The report must analyse the project’s use of project management (PM) framework/ methodology, principles, processes and practices that are discussed within the course materials; and best practices using different sources (e.g., books, journal articles, websites, news articles, reports, interviews, and empirical data). You need to provide a critical analysis of the project using the appropriate PM terminologies or concepts. 
 

Overview of Queensland Health Payroll System case study

The report will be based on post-project review of a completed project. For this report, a case study of the Queensland Health Payroll System is chosen. This is a case of project failure. The implementation of the payroll did not turn out in the way it is expected. Inaccurate or lack of use of PM tools and techniques has contributed to the failure of this project. A number of reviews from legal, administrative and audit perspective were made, which reveal that lack of planning and governance has resulted in a delay in completion of the project and has contributed to the project going over budget. In the year 2010, Queensland Health implemented its first stage of rostering system which aimed in replacing the existing payroll system. The project was undertaken and implemented by CorpTech under the state’s treasury department. However, the outcome of this implemented project can be described as spectacular failure in a number of aspects. The delivery of the project was delayed by almost 2 years and the project went 300% over budget (Thite & Sandhu, 2014). Yet, the project team could not deliver a flawless payroll system. This post-project review will evaluate the failure of the project management team in applying appropriate project management principles in the Queensland Health (QH) Payroll Project.

The QH Payroll Project involved implementation of a planned two-stage implementation of new rostering and payroll system. The project aimed in replacing the existing payroll system. The Project was owned by Queensland Health System (QHS) that provides public healthcare services in Queensland Province of Australia (Eden & Sedera, 2014). Although the project was planned, a number of factors added to the disaster. One of the major issues associated with the QH Payroll Project is that there was an insufficient calculation of the scope and term of the QH project. The implementation of the Queensland health payroll project involved managing over 24,000 combination of the payments of nearly 80,000 workers and subcontractors (Carlton & Peszynski, 2018). The existing payroll system was quite ineffective and therefore, the project become a high priority project. Since it was a high priority project, IBM estimated to take only seven months for completion, which is an incorrect estimation for project execution.

Out of the implementation time of 7 months, a constricted time of two weeks were allocated at the start of the project. This time was allocated to scope out the major business requirements. The project lacked identification of the project objectives. 

Analysis of Project Management Principles


The project further had problems of inexperienced leadership. This project was the first attempt for IBM Australia. The Queensland Health payroll project was complex and it lacked appropriate project leadership and governance. After the start of the QH Payroll project, controlling the same became a challenge (Asgarkhani et al., 2017). This is because, it appeared to be a lot of oversight of the program. The project although rolled out in the year 2010, the system was not working properly. An analysis of the problem revealed that a fully functional can be delivered, however, it would take almost 5 years for the same. The failure of project implementation in an appropriate manner resulted in budget overrun. The final cost of the project turned out to be AU $1.2 Billion instead of the initial budget of AU $836 M (McNeill, 2015). The state paid for the initial project cost after investigating the root cause of project failure.

Failure of applying needed project management principles has contributed to the failure of the QH payroll project. The project management performance could have been improved through the adoption of appropriate theoretical project delivery process. The section below discusses the failure of this project in applying appropriate project management concepts in project implementation.

The PMBOK identifies certain core knowledge areas that are effective for successful implementation of a project. There are 10 project management knowledge areas, based on which, the Queensland Health Payroll project will be analysed. Apart from that, there are five major PM processes, which are project initiation, project planning, project execution, monitoring and control and project closing (Varajão, Colomo-Palacios & Silva, 2017). The following sections analyses the Queensland health Payroll project on basis of 10 knowledge areas.

Project scope Management 

Project scope management relates to a number of processes that ensure that the scope of the project is correctly defined.  As indicated in the previous section of the report, one of the most significant reasons behind the failure of the project is ineffectiveness of the project team in correctly defining the scope of the project (Karaman & Kurt, 2015). The project was complex, yet the complexity of the project could not be correctly estimated at the commencement of the project.

It was responsibility of project team and project manager to scope out the critical business requirements at the start of the project. However, for this task, only two weeks were allocated out of the total time of seven months (Morien, 2014). This time was insufficient for identifying the critical business requirements of the project. Therefore, lack of appropriate scope identification and lack of identifiable project objective which is found to be a significant cause of project failure. 

Failure of Scope Management

Project Time Management 

Project Time management is an important aspect of project management. Appropriate time estimation and time management is necessary for ensuring successful project completion (Varajão, 2016). The QH Project was a failure, as this project could not be completed within the scheduled time. IBM Australia was ineffective in calculating the actual time required for completion of the project. IBM Australia underestimated the time required to execute the project and projected that the QH payroll project will be completed within 7 months.  On examining the project and its complexities, it is found out that the time of 7 months was too low for implementation of that complex project.

Project Cost management 

The Queensland health Payroll project was a disaster particularly because the project went over budget by 300% of the original budget. It was an inefficiency of the project team to estimate the budget for this complex project. The project cost management is mainly associated with the process of project planning, controlling and budget of actual project or a business (Kerzner & Kerzner, 2017). The budget should involve all the project processes including, project planning, execution, monitoring and control. The Queensland Health Payroll project team failed to complete the project within the approved budget.

Project Quality Management 

The Queensland Health Payroll project could not achieve the desired project quality. This is because the project team failed to set appropriate quality metrics. When the project went live in the year 2010, an ineffective payroll system was delivered that failed to manage the payroll of the employees.

Project Human Resource management 

There were issues with the human resource management of QH payroll project that led to the failure of the same (Duffield & Whitty, 2015). The project human resource management for Queensland project was ineffective as there have been lack of collaboration among the project team members. 

Project Communications Management 

Communication is the key for effective project management. One of the most significant reason behind the failure of the project improper communication among the team members. The Queensland Health payroll project faced issues of ineffective scope identification that was one of the effect of ineffective communication among the team member.

Project Risk management 

Risks in a project refers to uncertainties that can hamper the normal operations of a project. One of the major reasons behind the Queensland Health Payroll Project is ineffective risk management. The project team failed to identify the major risks associated with the project (Carlton, 2018). The Queensland Health Payroll project had risks related to schedule and budget which were needed to be identified and mitigated during the project implementation phase, which was not done. This led to the failure of the QH Payroll Project.

Ineffective Time Management

Project Stakeholder Management 

This knowledge area of PMBOK establishes the importance of project stakeholders in project management. Queensland Health Payroll Project was a disaster particularly because the project team members and the stakeholders had no specific idea of the needs and scope of the QH payroll project. There was no specific plan of stakeholder management that contributed to the project failure. It is established from the case of QH Payroll Project that the ineffective stakeholders’ engagement can led to project failure.

Project Procurement Management 

The post project review indicates that there were no major issue related to procurement in Queensland Health Payroll project (Paterno & Zhao, 2018). However, lack of proper scope identification and improper project estimation has led to the failure of this project. The complexity of the project was underestimated leading to its failure. 

Project Integration Management 

Queensland Health Payroll system had issues related to project integration management. Project integration management can be defined as the process and activities that are needed to be identified, defined and combined to coordinate all the activities associated with the management and implementation of a project (Juiz & Toomey, 2015). However, the project lacked coordination leading to inappropriate scope identification and project failure.

Conclusion 

The report performs a post-project review of a completed project “Queensland Health Payroll Project” and evaluates the reason of its failure. The report is based on review of the project management areas which could have been improved and which could have led to successful project implementation. The main reason of project failure is found to be improper scope identification and time estimation. The project review evaluates the knowledge areas of PMBOK and concludes that the future project performance could be improved through adoption of different theoretical project delivery process.

The drastic failure of the Queensland Health Payroll Project proves to be an important lesson learnt for the future projects. The project proves that appropriate theoretical knowledge about project management knowledge areas, process groups, and PM tools and techniques are necessary to successfully implement and conduct a project. The recommendations on how project management performance could be improved through adoption of the major theoretical project delivery process are discussed in the paragraphs below-

Scope Identification: One of the most significant lesson learnt from the Queensland Health Payroll Project is that enough time is needed to be allocated for scope identification. The project team should have proper knowledge about the scope management process and time required for scope identification of complex project like Queensland Health Payroll Project.

Project Cost Management

Realistic Schedule: Unrealistic time allocation is considered to be one of the most significant reason behind the project failure. Therefore it is recommended that future project should be allocated with realistic time to avoid project failure.

Coordination among Team Members:  One of the vital aspects of project management is effective coordination among the team members, which is necessary to communicate the major issues that a project might face. 

References 

Asgarkhani, M., Cater-Steel, A., Toleman, M., & Ally, M. (2017, December). Failed IT projects: is poor IT governance to blame?. In Proceedings of the 28th Australasian Conference on Information Systems (ACIS 2017). Australian Association for Information Systems.

Carlton, D. (2018). Situational Incompetence: An Investigation into the Causes of Failure of a Large-Scale IT Project. In Dark Sides of Organizational Behavior and Leadership. IntechOpen.

Carlton, D., & Peszynski, K. (2018, June). Situational Incompetence: The Failure of Governance in the Management of Large Scale IT Projects. In International Working Conference on Transfer and Diffusion of IT (pp. 224-244). Springer, Cham.

Duffield, S., & Whitty, S. J. (2015). Developing a systemic lessons learned knowledge model for organisational learning through projects. International journal of project management, 33(2), 311-324.

Eden, R., & Sedera, D. (2014). The largest admitted IT project failure in the Southern Hemisphere: a teaching case. In Proceedings of the 35th International Conference on Information Systems: Building a Better World Through Information Systems. AISeL.

Juiz, C., & Toomey, M. (2015). To govern IT, or not to govern IT?. Commun. ACM, 58(2), 58-64.

Karaman, E., & Kurt, M. (2015). Comparison of project management methodologies: prince 2 versus PMBOK for it projects. International Journal of Applied Sciences and Engineering Research, 4(4), 572-579.

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

McNeill, D. (2015). Global firms and smart technologies: IBM and the reduction of cities. Transactions of the institute of British geographers, 40(4), 562-574.

Morien, R. (2014). Back to basics: in support of agile development. In Handbook of Research on Emerging Advancements and Technologies in Software Engineering (pp. 279-292). IGI Global.

Paterno, P., & Zhao, S. (2018). Queensland Health: Australia's Healthcare IT Catastrophe. Proceedings of the Northeast Business & Economics Association.

Thite, M., & Sandhu, K. (2014). Where is My Pay? Critical Success Factors of a Payroll System–A System Life Cycle Approach. Australasian Journal of Information Systems, 18(2).

Varajão, J. (2016). Success Management as a PM knowledge area–work-in-progress. Procedia Computer Science, 100, 1095-1102.

Varajão, J., Colomo-Palacios, R., & Silva, H. (2017). ISO 21500: 2012 and PMBoK 5 processes in information systems project management. Computer Standards & Interfaces, 50, 216-222.

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My Assignment Help. Post-Project Review Of Queensland Health Payroll System Essay. [Internet]. My Assignment Help. 2020 [cited 16 July 2024]. Available from: https://myassignmenthelp.com/free-samples/pmn610-case-study-of-the-queensland-health-payroll-system.

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