In another ten years, India is expected to have the second largest number of project management jobs in the world after China. Phenomenal growth in project management opportunities will largely be driven by economic expansion and infrastructure projects. But, is the country geared up to meet the demand for skilled personnels in that area?
India is known to the world as the largest democracy and as the second most populous country. It has a distinct recognition for its diversity, rich history, traditions and values and is well-known for its human assets in terms of hard work and intelligence. However, being considered as a developing country even after 70 years of independence, there is every need for India to redefine itself and unleash its real potential.
India is a country of contrasts. We produce sufficient food to feed our population, yet thousands go hungry.
India has the second largest road network in the world after the US, yet connectivity remains poor.
There are many such difficult questions we have yet to address. India has had a tremendous journey in the last seven decades. There has been a significant progress in various spheres but we are still short of our goals in many areas.
The next three to five years are crucial for India as it leaps forward into a more advanced world. Reaching the significant milestone of 75 years doesn't come without its challenges. An increasing demographic, lack of jobs, lack of adequate infrastructure and many such trials will greet us in the future.
For the various projects that the Indian Government has taken up in mission modes such as Make in India, Skill Development, Digital India, Smart Cities and Start-up Infrastructure, the importance of a good project management needs to be reinforced more than ever. Secondly, in these times where disruption is the norm, organisations and nations that succeed are those that adapt rapidly to new opportunities and challenges. These innovators are changing the way they act, think and work. Companies are creating technologies that at one time seemed limited to the realm of science fiction.
Technology is all pervasive and there is competition from areas which was completely unheard of before. So, what worked in the past is not necessarily going to succeed in the future. Therefore, the government and the organisations need to account for the new changes in technology.
As organisations face increasingly complex challenges from such forces as innovation, disruption and the demands of a global business environment, the inextricable link between strategy and implementation must be addressed. Organisations like these realise that disruptive technologies can give them a competitive advantage by improving the customer experience, enhancing employee efficiency and shortening project timelines. They harness technology to change the way they operate and the way they manage projects.
It's no secret that all strategic change is delivered through project management. Yet research from our 2018 Pulse of the Profession, a global survey conducted by the Project Management Institute (PMI), shows that organisations waste 9.9 per cent of every dollar due to poor project performance. Much of this waste is due to poor implementation, rather than a flawed strategy. The survey also reveals that around Rs. 6.5 million is wasted every 20 seconds collectively by organisations around the globe due to the ineffective implementation of business strategy through poor project management practices. It equates to roughly Rs 1.28 trillion being wasted in a year. India loses 8.1 per cent of every dollar invested by businesses, pointing to a significant opportunity to drive financial performance.
Organisations that want to understand and manage the impact of technologies, viz., cloud solutions, artificial intelligence, Internet of Things, advanced robotics, voice-driven software, to name a few, can look to proven project management practices to survive and thrive during these times of change. As they embrace project excellence, they will experience greater success with their strategic initiatives and higher project rates. We see an average of 71 per cent of the projects of innovators; organisations in our research that have a mature digital transformation strategy are risk tolerant and have adopted and made disruptive technologies a priority and meet the original goals or business intent.
Innovators in our research commit to excellence by:
Using disruptive technologies
We see that innovators are leveraging these technologies to their advantage to encourage greater efficiency and automation, increase productivity, promote the development of better products and services, automate mundane tasks, advance innovation and drive better decision making.
Embracing the value delivery
As innovators look to compete in the future ways of working, they are using the full spectrum of competencies that enable organisations to deliver their projects and programmes, or the value delivery landscape.
Elevating the project manager
Innovators believe that the role of the project manager will evolve to the one that advocates for technology, motivates teams to implement, supervises course corrections and becomes an authority on disruptive technologies.
In conclusion, while we realise that challenges lie ahead, we see a considerable reason for optimism for the future of work and the role project management plays. Since all strategic change happens through projects and programmes, proven project management practices remain crucial for an organisation's success.
Authored By Raj Kalady, Managing Director, Project Management Institute, India.