Managing a project is a challenging task. It requires a lot of effort, patience, and accountability. Project management proves to be worthy when the project succeeds. But at times, despite the team’s best efforts, many projects get off track. Although things have improved with the use of project management software, there is still room for some more improvement.
A majority of project managers have faced project failure at some point in their careers. As per a survey, around 12% of respondents reported that they have faced project failure within their organization. Managers have to deal with some unavoidable circumstances like health issues, unclear specifications, market risks, natural calamities, etc.
But what are the reasons that contribute to project failure? In this blog, we are going to discuss some of the major project management pitfalls and the ways to avoid them.
Key Reasons Responsible for Project Failure
A project is considered as failed when it does not deliver the expected results within a predefined budget and timeline. Moreover, some projects can be also considered a failure if they are unable to meet targeted ROIs. Apart from this, a change in objectives and organizational priorities is also responsible for causes of project failure.
But these are not the only causes of project failure, there are a few more. Here are the causes of project failure along with their effective solutions-
1. Poorly or Undefined Project Scope
A majority of organizations have more projects on hand than their capabilities. At times, such organizations start working on multiple projects without adequately defined goals and strategies. Due to which a project can be converted into a disaster. Here a well-defined project scope will be useful to avoid such situation.
However, if the project scope is not defined clearly then the teams will not get a proper direction to follow and your clients will not get clarity of relevant terms and conditions. As a result, the efficiency of the project team will be reduced, wastage of resources, missed deadlines, and constrained budgets.
How to prevent it:
Project managers need to draft a well-defined project scope management plan to avoid this project failure risk. They should include important details in this plan like –
– Deliverables, project phases, and tasks
– Project timelines and milestones
– Task requirements, dependencies, and constraints
The above-mentioned details will help you get off a project on track speedily. Also, it will serve as a reference for project teams to keep everything on track.
2. Poor Documentation Process
Managers tend to neglect documentation as the project progresses through the life cycle. As their team is busy with task completion and meeting deadlines. Therefore, it is hard for project managers to track the progress of relevant tasks. It creates a huge risk causes of project failures and generates dysfunctionalities that can put the project off track.
How to prevent it:
Managers need to make documentation a compulsory practice. They should include documentation at every phase of the project lifecycle. Project tracker tool, feasibility report, communication plan, traceability matrix, and closeout report are the tools that team leaders can use for project documentation.
Documenting project processes will keep the team aligned. Every member of the team can understand their roles and what has been done so far. As a result, project execution flow will become smoother.
3. Not Fostering a Strong Team
Managers need to deal with multiple dependencies to lead a project towards successful completion. And it can be only achieved if everyone on the team communicates openly and supports each other when needed. Lack of coordination among team members can create conflicts and miscommunication that can adversely affect the entire project cycle.
How to prevent it:
As the project’s leader, you have to prevent such from arising. You need to establish a dynamic team at the earliest and maintain their agility through different activities like:
– Daily Standup Meetings
– Weekly project calls to resolve internal issues
– Individual Check-Ins
– Arrange team building activities
You can easily sort out disagreements in a more mature and professional way when your team is strong. Ultimately, the key to creating strong project teams lies in ensuring the entire team reaches the goal within a fixed time frame.
If you take a close look at your approach to project management, you may find some of the above issues. However, you can easily prevent potential adverse outcomes and hardships by following the steps described here.
Besides, you can use a robust project management software to avoid project failures. It will help you plan and streamline project processes and enable you to track them in real-time. Moreover, a project management tool can help you create win-win team collaborations to achieve timely completion.
TaskOPad is future-ready project management software for enterprises. It offers an intuitive digital workspace and built-in communication channels to make your next project a success. Just drop us a line at firstname.lastname@example.org to get a free demo.