This article will look at how technology has impacted Project Management. History traces of some form of good Project Management in the completion of the Great Pyramid of Giza in 2570 BC and the building of the Great Wall of China in 208 BC just to mention a few. Today these are topical discussions as to how these feats were achieved in ancient times. Records show that managers were assigned for each of the Great Pyramid’s four faces with the responsibility to deliver on their work packages in the contemporary wording. History also records that since the rule of the Qin Dynasty, the dynasty’s labour force was composed of groups, soldiers, common people, and criminals. This mix of his citizenry was ordered to complete this project but all examples articulated here were done without the modern controls practices that we employ now through technology.
In 1917, one of the first fathers of modern project management, Henry Gantt, created a scheduling diagram called the Gantt chart. We read about the Hoover Dam project, which started in 1931 as one of the first beneficiaries of Gantt’s work. 1957 saw the creation of the Critical Path Method (CPM) by Walker and Kelly of DuPont
The convergence of these disciplines became more pronounced in the late 70s where algorithms were put in place to make sure there was an optimization in projects. Automation of tracking time, updating estimates, and reporting schedule progress has progressed over time and we are now in the era of mobile apps. When combined, these have the potential to reduce meeting time and improving accuracy. Simply put, technology affords speed and accuracy to the project management discipline. We can further argue that when such tools are put in use, this offers an opportunity to free up teams to focus on the more valuable activities. Technology has undisputedly modernized even the role of a project manager who in the past was focused more on controlling and monitoring but now has the freedom to include coordination and coaching.
Automation can offload mundane tasks. For example, an application could get updates from the team, produce key reports, and raise triggers and alerts when problems are detected. These are new features we see today that shape Project Management.
With the advent of the internet, there is a new dimension of establishing virtual project officers worldwide, and making it easier to deliver products and services, monitoring projects, and communicating with anyone remotely, allowing people and businesses to manage projects anywhere at any time.
In conclusion, projects have become more complex and gone are the days of spreadsheets in managing projects. Analytics have become key tools required for contemporary managers in sound decision making. These advances in Technology and Project Management have elevated our probabilities of success in our delivery of projects. The language of “ongoing” in representing the status of a project is a thing of the past because tools can give precision at the click of a button.
Gaogaufi Mako holds the position of Senior Consultant at InnoLead Consulting offering Management Consultancy and Corporate Training Solutions. He can be contacted on +267 3909102 and email@example.com