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Pmtimes Resources For The Project Managers

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Question:

Discuss About The Pmtimes Resources For The Project Managers?

 

Answer:

Introduction

One of the key qualities that a sound management should have is the ability to assess the risks involved in the organization. Procuring of the necessary inputs in the organization is another vital part of the business operations. Organizations and individuals develop projects that are aimed at enhancing the growth of the business. Every project needs inputs that are procured from suppliers or other sources. Developed projects have potential risks associated with them. Project risks should be assessed at the project formulation stage and methods of dealing with the risks should be drafted. Mismanagement of procurement could also contribute to the failure of the developed project. Project risk and procurement management have a linear relationship in the logic that if procurement management is poor, the project’s risk of failure increases and when the procurement management is good, the chance of project success is high. There different aspects of project risk and procurement management and their impacts on organizations’ activities. The article will evaluate the impact of project risk and procurement management on businesses and business activities.

 

Project risk

A project risk can be defined as an uncertain event that if it occurs, has either a positive or negative impact on one or more project objectives[1]. Project risk affects the set objectives that the project was purposed to achieve. No project is risk-free and for this reason, risk management plans are placed in  place to ensure that if the risks occur, there are means to deal with them and reduce the impact they have on the project. Project risk involves risks that are known and other risks that are unknown. Some of the risks that are known include; safety risks in construction, change in local currency which affects the purchasing power of the money in the project, and bad weather that affect projects that depend on good weather.  Lack of commitment from stakeholders and the executive is usually the first cause of risk occurrence. Incompetent management and inefficient resources also lead to project risk occurring[2]. Some of the major causes of project risk include;

Poor preparation- lack of a clear picture of how the success of the project will look like, lack of proper allocation of resources, and delay in project initiation leads to project risk. Preparation is a crucial stage of a project and failure of adequate preparation leads to a high probability of risk occurrence.

Poor leadership- every management level has a role to play to contribute to the success of the business. Lack of support from the management leads to the delay of arrivals of inputs as well as delays in payments of the workers which causes the project to halt and takes more time than initially intended.

Inexperienced project managers- project managers are responsible for driving the project forward and ensuring that the expectations of the stakeholders are achieved. Roles of the project manager involve assigning people to the correct duties that match their skills and experience, ensuring that the project is on track regarding the time frame, and ensuring that all resources involved in the project are utilized accordingly to avoid wastage. A project manager who cannot carry out the required duties leads to several project risks and the eventual failure of the project.

Inaccurate cost estimates- incorrect estimates of inputs that will be involved in the project often increase the probability of project risk. Inaccurate estimates lead to purchase of few resources which run out during the implementation of the project causing the project to halt.

Poor communication- lack of proper communication at different levels o management hinders the flow of vital information. Poor communication leads to unsolved issues that hinder the progress of the project. The workers should be able to talk to their seniors about any concerns they have, and the management should communicate any information regarding the project promptly to avoid delays.

There are also positive risks which affect the project. Most of the positive risks are taken as opportunities for the business are mainly due overestimation of the required resources and cost of the project

 

Project risk management

Project risk is inevitable in any project. Project management serves to ensure that the risks are maintained at a minimal level. Project managers have to identify the risks that may arise during the project in developing strategies to handle the risks. Project management ensures that the risks have minimum effect on the success of the project. Risk management involves four steps which help in the control of the risk. These steps include;

Identification of risk- the first step is identifying the risks that have a possibility of occurring. Risk identification is important in project planning because strategies of dealing with the risks are put in place in the early stages of the project. Some of the notable risks are supplier risk, resource risk, and budget risk.  The resource risk affects the project when there is inadequate human capital or the available human resource is not skilled enough. The budget risk affects the project when the cost of the project is more than what was anticipated.

Risk quantification- quantification of risk involves analyzing the likelihood of the occurrence of the risk. The risks that have a high chance of occurrence and could have a big impact on the process are addressed first. The risks are quantified in four levels: low, medium, high and critical. Critical risks can affect the project by a high magnitude and can even cause the failure of the project.

Risk response- the project managers are charged with the duty to determine the best way to deal with the possible risk. Risk response involves the implementation of strategies that are I place to keep the effects of the risk at minimum levels. Project risks are divided into positive and negative risks. Due to this reason, the project managers have to choose the strategies that will best handle the risk. The strategies may involve handling risks that can be avoided, ignoring the risk, especially the positive risks, correcting the risk, and accepting the risk.

Monitoring and controlling risk- after the risk is identified and dealt with, the project manager has to monitor the occurrence of the risk again and identify new risks. The risk is controlled to keep the effects down. Mechanisms are laid out to monitor and assess the risk as well as another emerging risk, monitoring and controlling of the project risk ensures the uninterrupted progress of the project.

Some of the characteristics of a good project risk management include;

Prioritizing the risk- a sound risk management prioritizes the risk in the project. The risk managers gather to draft strategies to mitigate the risks and strategies of the risks that may arise. The critical risks are given first priority and are addressed earlier in the project.

Integrity- a good risk management team has to be independent and operate separately from the project team. Independence of the team will ensure that the management will do as it sees fit on dealing with the risks.

High data quality- data is essential in solving of risks. A sound risk management should have quality and accurate data to enable effectiveness when dealing with the project risk. Data enables data analysis and ultimately enables formulation of effective strategies for dealing with the project risk

Use of the appropriate management tools- a major characteristic of a sound risk management is the use of the right tools. The right management tools range from SWOT analysis to the use of the right computer software such as Excel, to more quantitative tools of risk analysis such as decision tree model. The appropriate management tools make it possible for the management to fully analyze the data and come up with conclusive findings which aid in the formulation of risk strategies.

Benchmarking culture- a good risk management is willing to embrace and apply practices from other organizations. Sound management compares its risk management process to the processes of other successful and organized organization to learn and adopt the useful concept. The risk management also invites external experts to benchmark on the applied risk management process and give their opinion and critic. Mature risk management engages in dialogues on professional platforms and forums to exchange ideas on risk management processes.

Follow up- a good risk management includes the findings of the risk analysis in the agendas of the organization and ensures that follow up actions are taken. The findings of the analysis are used by the organization in the future to make difficult decisions. Follow up actions are important to determine the effectiveness of the applied strategy in mitigating the risk.

Risk management generally involves identifying, analyzing, and mitigating risks that can affect the project. Risk management consists of the outlined action plan that leads to the elimination of risk that exists in the projects. The risk management techniques employed are dependent on the nature of the project. Benefits of a sound risk management include

  • Avoids big problems that could lead to failure of the project
  • Enhances the project's revenue by saving on the expenses that would have consumed much money due to the risk
  • Increases the sense of responsibility and accountability in the project managers
  • Helps the organization focus on the opportunities rather than the risks
  • Enables completion of the project on time thus giving the business a competitive advantage over the other firms.

Overall, in the planning process of the project, project risk should be considered. The management and all the stakeholders of the project should formulate strategies to deal with the risk. Proper planning ensures that the obvious risks such as labor shortage and inadequate budgeting are avoided. The risk management is left to deal with other challenges that may arise rather than the risk that comes about due to ignorance in the planning process. The risk management team should be involved in the planning of the project to implementation and completion of the task. A sound risk management should pose the qualities discussed in the report. Risk management is a fundamental determinant of the success or failure of a project. An organization with mature risk management ensure that data analysis is carried in an efficient manner so as to obtain accurate data which is crucial to strategy formulation.

 

Procurement Management

Procurement is an essential aspect of any business or institution. Organizations have to purchase certain inputs that are vital to the functioning of the organization.  The procurement process involves a chain of processes that enable the movement of the necessary resources from the sellers to the organization. Procurement involves the selection of sellers, determining the payment plans, vetting of the suppliers, negotiation of the business contracts and making the actual purchase. Procurement takes into account all the factors involved during a trade; delivery, marginal benefit, inflation levels and price fluctuations. Procurement is split into two categories;

Direct spend-direct spend involves procurement of all goods that are finished products such as finished components. Direct spend influences manufacturing since the factories depend on raw materials.

Indirect procurement- the procurement of inputs that do not relate to production is classified under indirect procurement. Indirect spend involves the acquisition of a wide range of products such as office utensils, machines, machine spare parts, lubricants, tables, and desks.

Procurement is viewed as a tactical means of acquiring goods and services compared to a simple purchase. Procurement can be defined as the acquisition of services, goods, and work from external sources[3]. Procurement ensures that the business activities run smoothly throughout the trading period.

The procurement process involves a series of activities that are integrated to serve a single purpose of acquiring different goods from different external suppliers. A system is laid down for the procurement process to flow smoothly. The system is run and managed by the procurement management. Procurement management is the work process of monitoring, controlling and managing the procurement activities.[4] Procurement management controls the acquisition activities through four steps;

Planning-the first stage involves identification of the important aspects and requirements. Planning involves identification of the potential vendors, the costs that the process will incur, the quantities and description of the items to be acquired, and the time frame required for the items to arrive.

Plan execution- the second step is to put the plan into action. The execution of the plan involves vetting the potential vendors and settling on the ones that are most appealing. The vendors are contacted and requested to submit their proposals for the requested transactions. The plan execution has to be in line with the set objectives. The prices of the intended goods should be determined and compared with the previous invoices to determine the necessary changes. The final stage of the plan execution step is making the actual purchase.

Control and monitor the procurement- after the purchase is made, the procurement management ensures that what was ordered is what is brought to the organization. Any changes that are necessary are handled at this stage. The procurement managers have the duty to ensure that the relationship between the supplier and the organization is maintained for a steady flow of the procured products. All the necessary documents are filled for future reference. Delivery and handling of the items are monitored to ensure that nothing is damaged.

Finalizing the process-the final steps involve closing the procurement process. After the procurement management is satisfied with the items and approves all of them, the procurement process is closed

The procurement management plan is set to guide the whole procurement team on what to do. Failure to adhere to the plan leads to consequences which include;

Procurement risk- the procurement management plan serves to solve the problem of transparency in the acquisition process. The procurement process is subject to risk due to the purchasing activities of the team members. The plan involves strategic plans in place for avoiding risks of transparency and supply risk. Failure to abide by the plan leads occurrence of the risks that will translate to other departments of the institution.

Inconsistency –the procurement plan ensures that the procurement practices are as per the requirements. Failure by the procurement team to follow the procurement plan will cause inconsistency in procurement activities which will cause the institution additional costs in order for new equipment. Inconsistency cause frustration among the stakeholders who become confused on what to expect.

Knowledge gaps- the procurement management plan ensures that information flows to every team member letting everyone know of any changes and the expectations of everyone in the team. When the plan is not followed by every team member, some of the workers will try and carry out the procurement activities by their own personal means. Such practices will lead to breakage of information and the process becomes distorted as the workers are working individually instead of working as a unit. The lack of clear direction by the workers leads to confusion within the department and many errors are made which lead to more money being spent to compensate for the bad acquisition

Procurement management and project risk

The procurement management in any organization influences and affects the projects in the organization. Project risk is partially dependent on the procurement management. Every project depends on the acquisition of the resources necessary to proceed with the project. A sound procurement management ensures that the inputs required for the project arrive on time and are of the right standards. The procurement management is the determinant of how smooth the project will progress. The procurement plan should be set to ensure that the project’s requirements are always available at the time of need.

A bad procurement management leads to the acquisition of the wrong inputs either in quality or quantity. The wrong inputs cannot be used in the project causing the task to stop as new orders are made and the wrong ones returned. Lack of monitoring by the procurement management leads to damage of the resources acquired which in turns slows down the project as the equipment is repaired. Failure of the procurement management leads to additional cos on the project which adds to the project risk,

When the procurement management is good and the team is properly coordinated, the project risk reduction, and it enhances time-saving which also translates to savings in capital when the project is finished before the set time frame. A sound management maintains a good relationship with the suppliers in a manner that the suppliers can willingly supply to the organization the required inputs on credit or on emergency cases. Supplier risk, quality risk, shortage risk and time risk can be avoided by an efficient procurement management.

 

Conclusion

In general, every project in any organization is subject to project risk. Proper strategies should be put in place to deal with and avoid the project risk. Risks that are obvious to the stakeholders and the management should be eliminated in the planning process so that the project manager should be left with the risks that may emerge during the project. Project risk involves any occurrence that that may have either a positive or negative impact on the objectives of the plan. There is a need for proper communication during the implementation of every stage of the project. Proper planning is also vital to the mitigation of project risk. Procurement management also plays a role in determining the fate of the project. A sound procurement management will ensure that the project’s required inputs are always available and are in the right quantity and of the right quality.

 

References

Chadwick, Deene. "commonsensical project Risk Definition." PMtimes Resources for project managers. september 11, 2013. https://www.projecttimes.com/articles/commonsensical-project-risk-defination.html (accessed October 10, 2017).

Dalkin, John. "DEFINITION-WHAT IS PROCUREMENT?" CAPITAL . july 10, 2014. https://www.capital.uk.com/2014/07/defination-procurement/ (accessed October 10, 2017).

Mar, Anna. "management-project management-project risk-project risks (list)." simplicable. june 28, 2016. htpps://management.simplicable.com/management/news/130-project-risks (accessed October 10, 2017).s

the PD. "procurement management." THE PROJECT DEFINITION. DECEMBER 14, 2015. https://the projectdefination.com/procurement-management/ (accessed OCTOBER 10, 2017).

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