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Part 4: The rise of project management, techniques and tools

Globalization

The technology revolution has reduced the cost and risk of companies expanding into new territories that previously were only possible for larger corporations with significant financial assets. As the processing power of machines and communications increase companies can move work to organizations that offer significant cost reductions and they may be based anywhere in the world requiring only a reliable communications network to access the internet. This has led to the growth of regional economic power houses such as Brazil, India and China increasing the standards of living for the local population and the emergence of local corporations equivalent to those most commonly known within the G-8 group of nations.

As work moves from one place to another the planning and management of that work needs to be coordinated with a local resource of the receiving company or organization. The overall responsibility of that work still lies with the originating organization or the company that has the overall responsibility of delivering the completed work within the agreed budget, timeline and the importance of maintaining the quality of the work. This introduces new challenges for project managers who now must coordinate their efforts with remote team members that may cross cultures or timezones. This includes interacting within this virtual project organization throughout all phases of the work from its planning to the final delivery - a project manager must now collaborate on project goals, its plan, the progress to date and consolidating all project information to control, re-plan, manage and report on the overall project.

For a corporation expanding into these regional areas to create a local presence consideration needs to be made to local and regional laws, accounting practices, financial reporting methods and tax rules. At the same time, the company needs to be able to consolidate financial and reporting data across its subsidiaries for local financial reporting needs and compliance requirements. For work that is executed as part of a project, the transactions incurred to perform the work needs to be collected in local currency and may be required to invoice or report in another. This can add new risks not previously identified through currency fluctuations and were highlighted during the currency crisis within the Asia Pacific region.

Part 5: The rise of project management, techniques and tools

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