3 Barriers to Adopting Your Project Portfolio Management System

By June 27, 2018PPM
Data Governance Training

The success of an organization is heavily dependent on the way it manages its projects when ensuring goals and objectives are achieved in a timely manner. Unfortunately, this task can become exceedingly complex, as managing a variety of projects includes managing all of the requisite moving parts and people.

A critical component of a successful PPM initiative is to bring the entire team on board with the implementation efforts. Typically, the responsibilities and knowledge of project management are siloed within the minds of a select few individuals, as are the requisite decision-making capabilities of the position.

This can lead to a host of issues, ranging from misaligned internal priorities, a lack of understanding from the team, and general apathy towards optimized the PPM process. Leading organizations in Today’s rapidly changing environment understand that decentralizing the PPM office and encouraging collaboration in the management space is essential to continuous improvement and value delivery.

Here are some of the main reasons why PPM adoption is difficult:

#1 Company culture and in-house politics

Company Culture is seen as one of the biggest barriers to PPM adoption. Resistance to PPM is quite common, as this is a technological process that is new to many people and, naturally, individuals are often resistant to change. If PPM is adopted, house politics can often cause the PPM process to slow down, and raise barriers to implementation.

#2 Underdeveloped project management skills

Project managers who are not as experienced in PPM implementation may lack the skills and experience to adopt a PPM strategy. Project managers might lack the ability to implement a strategy, find PPM techniques and tools difficult to use, or again, fear the change of new strategies.

Many managers are simply satisfied with checking a task off their spreadsheet and then moving on to the next task. Managers can also view PPM as an automated tyrant who dictates how to execute tasks without the true understanding of day-to-day complications.

#3 Inadequate understanding

PPM implementation is significantly easier said than done, as understanding the function and benefits of a modern PPM approach is relatively esoteric for organizations that have traditional methods up until now. Without someone who properly understands the “in’s and out’s” of PPM, it becomes increasingly difficult for an advocate to convey the benefits of PPM throughout the organization.

Project managers and others in charge of PPM adoption and implementation must actively understand its functions. They must understand the benefits and also be able to communicate them in an effective communication style to team members and stakeholders.

Though these barriers seem initially daunting, there are ways in which one can overcome these issues and successfully adopt PPM:

  • Foremost, determine the root cause of the misaligned company culture. Figure out if cultural issues are due to organizational politics or if there are other factors that are in play. Diagnose the issue and determine possible fixes.

As PPM becomes increasingly more beneficial for an organization, it becomes clear that organizational politics must be circumvented in order to push for widespread adoption. If organizational politics is too convoluted to fix, begin building relationships with those in positions of power (either formal or informal), so that you are in a better spot to spread your message and expand your sphere of influence.

  • One of the best ways to bridge the gap between inexperience and implementation in effectively executing a customized PPM strategy is to attend specialized lifecycle training courses. By doing so, you will be able to effectively compare which PPM strategy best suits your needs to achieve your goals.
  • With the adoption of PPM, many managers feel as though they are losing control. They know that projects often must be led with a firm hand so the team can meet the deadline in a fashionable time. With the adoption and implementation of a modern PPM approach, managers are not losing control of their projects or teams, they are allowing tech to handle the nitty gritty specifics that come with every project.

Sometimes the hardest road is the necessary road. No one ever said that the adoption of PPM would be a smooth ride. There is no doubt that the adoption of modern PPM technologies will present several lingering issues as outlined above, but these barriers to adoption can be overcome, and significant value derived.

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