The project managers in construction projects have to organize and manage all the activities. But these projects are large and consist of many disciplines. It increases the risk of project failure. Construction project are unpredictable due to its one time nature (Turner, 2014). They require leadership and flexible management to deal with the uncertainties arising during the project. Efficient project management methodologies can provide assistance to the managers. It will improve planning, coordination, integration and control work. Earlier project managers used traditional methodologies which ignores the uncertainties of the future (Schwalbe, 2015). This led to the development of flexible approach known as Agile methodology. It is suitable for construction projects because it allows changes in the existing processes.
The paper is based on the Agile methodology and its importance in improving the performance of the construction project. In the present case study Quota Shared Pathway construction has been used for designing the implementation plan with the use of Agile methodology.
Agile project management is an effective methodology which improves the chances of success of the project (Leach, 2014). It gives opportunity to the project manager to assess and analyze the direction of the project. The changes can be made development lifecycle according to the requirements to different activities and processes. Traditional methodologies provide only one chance to the team members to create a plan. On the other hand, Agile methodology allows re-evaluation and review of project in small time intervals (Fewings, 2013). This makes it effective as compared to other project management methodologies. It helps in reducing compatibility issues and establishment of better communication between the team members can be possible. Agile methodology has different principles and practices which accepts that construction projects are prone to changes. They allow managers and team members to develop their knowledge and understanding as the project progresses (Mir and Pinnington, 2014). In simpler words, it provides flexibility to the project which increases its performance. Apart from this, it ensures that same level of standards is followed in all the activities. The practices of Agile methodology helps in increasing the efficiency and allows automation of different tasks in certain situations. Furthermore, it is based on four principles of project management which is known as Agile manifesto (Burke, 2013). It includes individual and interactions, focus on useful outcome of the project rather than documents, collaboration and negotiation and changing according to the circumstances.
Quota Shared Park is located in Mackay, Australia. The Mackay Regional Council (MRC) has invited tenders for the development of bikeways and pathways in the park. This pathway will connect the facilities, recreations and offices. It will enhance the experience of citizens who visit the park. It will provide them an easy access to all the assets and facilities. This construction project has been authenticated by the government. The project manager has to ensure that it is constructed in the stipulated time and budget (Heagney, 2016). There are many tools and techniques which can be used for the successful completion of the project. The Quota Shared Park has estimates for drainage system, environmental management, traffic provision, earthworks, protective treatment, road furniture, revegetation works landscape. All these factors and estimates have to be considered in the planning and designing stage of the project. Furthermore, the deliverables have to be achieved in the stipulated time.
Construction projects require effective planning and monitoring process to ensure the direction of the project. There has to be a systematic and structured approach which helps in understanding the progress (Meredith, Mantel Jr and Shafer, 2013). Similarly, Project management requires methodologies such as Agile, scrum, PMBok, PRINCE2 etc. Quota Shared Pathway construction project follows six steps which are given below:
Requirements: The first stage of Agile methodology includes requirements identification. It consists of type of laborer required, equipments, materials, devices and tools required for the project (Heldman, 2015). Project manager has to make sure that all the essentials are covered under the budget of the project. The decisions taken in this stage as to be approved the stakeholders and sponsors.
Planning: This stage involves creating plans, rules, policies, standards and schema. It acts as a guide which helps in understanding different aspects of the construction project (Guth and Marsh, 2016). All the complexities and technicalities are identified and planned in this stage. The time schedules, millstones and resource allocation are also done at this stage by the project manager.
Designing: This stage consists of specifications, technical and technology aspects, processes, layout, testing methods and measures of project success (Naeni, Shadrokh and Salehipour, 2014). The Quota Shared Park project requires different deliverables which can be documented at this stage. It will allow team members and project manager to task decisions and perform their duties according to the requirements of the project. Agile methodology of project management promotes team work and collaborations which can be used to fulfill this aspect of the model (Rosemann and vom Brocke, 2015).
Developing: The execution of the project starts at this stage. The manager has to make sure that all the members understand the policies and plans created for the Quota Shared Park project. They have to follow the procedures so as to complete the project in time (Hill, Jones and Schilling, 2014).
Execution: The verification and execution stage involves testing and detection of defects. All the activities and processes are tested and checked. The quality of the work has to be according to the standards formed in earlier stages (Pemsel and Wiewiora, 2013). Verification stage is necessary in Agile methodology because many construction projects fail due to inappropriate testing facilities an time.
Maintenance: Agile model ensures monitoring and tracking the progress of the project. This stage provides opportunity to the managers so that they can enhance their knowledge and understanding about different processes (Guth and Marsh, 2016). It consists of installation, maintenance, migration and monitoring of the entire project. These stages of the Agile methodology has to be implemented by the manager in the Quota Park Pathway construction project. The team members and workers have to understand their roles and become an integrated system. They have to provide support different workers so that upgrading of various activities can be done easily (Meredith, Mantel Jr and Shafer, 2013). All these aspects are covered in this maintenance, progress review and monitoring stage of the project.
The main phases of Agile methodology of project management are as follows:
Planning levels: Agile model uses iterative ways to create plans for the construction projects. These plans are followed for by the team embers and changes are done in it according to the circumstances (Mir and Pinnington, 2014). The plans are short which makes sure that they are achieved in the given time frame. It allows the project manager to reduce wastage of time and resources. Detailed planning is not used because it has to be changed during the process. Quota Shared Pathway construction project should use five levels to create their plans. It includes vision, road map, planning deliverables, cycle plan and daily plans (Meredith, Mantel Jr and Shafer, 2013).
Short cycle planning: Agile methodology uses cycle plans in the entire process. It involves setting priorities for the requirements of the project. The order and rank of each activity is decided in advance. The review session allows the project manager to make changes in the deliverables. Quota Shared Pathway construction will be benefitted from this because it reduces the risk of project failure (Naeni, Shadrokh and Salehipour, 2014). This phase helps the project manager to find out problems and to bring changes in the process. Furthermore, it will allow Quota Shared Pathway project to work in close collaboration with stakeholders and the client.
Reconciliations: Agile methodology will make it easier for the project manager to complete the Quota Shared Pathway construction. The reconciliation is done in each cycle which allows the management to understand the progress of the project. The results are presented at regular intervals along with the reconciliation reports. The pathway and bikeways ca ne developed keeping in mind other deliverables of the project (Hill, Jones and Schilling, 2014). It includes drainage, environmental management, traffic provision, establishment of site, road furniture and protective treatment.
Accepting changes: Quota Shared Pathway construction project includes all the requirements and details. The biggest advantage of Agile methodology is that it allows changes in each cycle. Project managers can change priorities, goals, requirements and processes in the next cycle. It will allow the project to be completed in the given timeframe and budget (Schwalbe, 2015). This phase helps in handling new requirements and changes in the project.
Collaboration of project team: Agile model of project management allows tem members to work in small groups. They work together to achieve deliverables of the project. Construction project including Quota Shared Pathway is complex in nature as it involves many processes and systems (Pemsel and Wiewiora, 2013). Agile methodology can eliminate this problem by allocating the tasks to different teams. They are given responsibility to complete their work in the desired time scale.
Communication: Agile methodology focuses on person to person method of communication. It reduces ambiguity and helps in creating smooth workflows. This phase essential for construction projects because all the activities have to be integrated at the end of the project. Problems in integration can affect the success of the project (Pemsel and Wiewiora, 2013). The project manager of Quota Shared Pathway construction has to ensure that there is defective communication between the team members. This project has many deliverables which are highly dependent on various activities.
Documentation: Documentation is done for all the activities so that team members can continue their work without any disruptions (Naeni, Shadrokh and Salehipour, 2014). Project managers are not bound to these documented policies and they are allowed to take their decisions. The main objective of Agile methodology is to complete the project in desired time and budget rather than sticking to the written documents.
Time scaling: Agile methodology considers three important factors: Time, cost and scope. It is slightly different from the traditional project management techniques (Meredith, Mantel Jr and Shafer, 2013). In Agile methodology the time and resources are fixed while the scope of the project varies. Quota Shared Pathway also has limited time and budget. Agile method will allow the project manager to take decision for the benefit of the pathway construction. Traditional project management techniques and Agile methodology have different triangles which can be seen in the appendix.
Uncertainities in complex projects: Agile projects are suited for construction projects such as Quota Shared Pathway because it contains uncertainties and complexities (Heagney, 2016). Agile methodology is effective in conditions where there is changing circumstances, unclear goals and specification complex results have to be achieved.
Justification of Agile methodology
Agile methodology allows the manager to understand all the activities of the project. He can communicate it to team members and workers so that they understand their roles and contribution in the construction project (Naeni, Shadrokh and Salehipour, 2014). Quota Shared Pathway construction can be developed using different phases of Agile methodology. It will help in understanding all the sequential processes. Furthermore, the project manager can create priorities which will allow him to manage all the processes and activities. It also includes individual and interactions, focus on useful outcome rather than documents, collaboration, negotiation and changing according to the conditions.
It can be concluded that Agile methodology is suitable for the Quota Shared Pathway construction project. It allows the project manager to take decisions keeping in mind the outcomes of the project. It helps in completion of the project in desired time and budget. Agile methodology allows re-evaluation and reviews at specific intervals. It makes the entire process effective as compared to other project management methodologies. Apart from this, Quota Shared Pathway construction project can use six stages of Agile method which will help them to improve the performance of their project. They will be able to provide deliverables in the required timeframe. The main stages of Agile methodology are Requirements, Planning, Designing, Developing, Execution and Maintenance of the project after its completion.
Burke, R., 2013. Project management: planning and control techniques. New Jersey, USA.
Fewings, P., 2013. Construction project management: an integrated approach. Routledge.
Guth, D.W. and Marsh, C., 2016. Public relations: A values-driven approach. Pearson.
Heagney, J., 2016. Fundamentals of project management. AMACOM Div American Mgmt Assn.
Heldman, K., 2015. PMP Project Management Professional Exam Deluxe Study Guide: Updated for the 2015 Exam. John Wiley & Sons.
Hill, C.W., Jones, G.R. and Schilling, M.A., 2014. Strategic management: theory: an integrated approach. Cengage Learning.
Leach, L.P., 2014. Critical chain project management. Artech House.
Meredith, J.R., Mantel Jr, S.J. and Shafer, S.M., 2013. Project management in practice. Wiley Global Education.
Mir, F.A. and Pinnington, A.H., 2014. Exploring the value of project management: linking project management performance and project success. International Journal of Project Management, 32(2), pp.202-217.
Naeni, L.M., Shadrokh, S. and Salehipour, A., 2014. A fuzzy approach for the earned value management. International Journal of Project Management, 32(4), pp.709-716.
Pemsel, S. and Wiewiora, A., 2013. Project management office a knowledge broker in project-based organisations. International Journal of Project Management, 31(1), pp.31-42.
Rosemann, M. and vom Brocke, J., 2015. The six core elements of business process management. In Handbook on business process management 1 (pp. 105-122). Springer Berlin Heidelberg.
Schwalbe, K., 2015. Information technology project management. Cengage Learning.
Turner, J.R., 2014. The handbook of project-based management (Vol. 92). New York, NY: McGraw-hill.
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