Cloud-based Project Portfolio Management” market is forecasted to grow at CAGR (compound annual growth rate) of 14.08% from 2018 – 2022. One driver in the market is increasing requirements for large-scale project management”.

In the recent years, there is a growing trend toward larger projects and programs.  For example, take the China’s Belt and Road initiative, which is re-establishing the land and maritime routes of the old Silk Road. The collective cost of these initiatives are measured in trillions of dollars, dwarfing the US Marshall Plan. These infrastructure projects are nearly always billion dollar or more reach.  When I was in Athens, Greece recently, I visit the Piraeus Port, which will soon rival to be one of the biggest in Europe. But with this kind of spending, project professionals should start to think about how to apply program management to more effectively and efficiently manage these larger endeavors.

Programs are collection of related projects. But the power of program management is when the discipline applied toward the “tight” programs in which the relatedness of the projects are such that when one fails, the entire program is endangered. For example, let’s say your organization is building a new capability to sell a new product. After analysis, there are four related projects in this new program: technology, people, internal process, and supply-chain.  The failure or weakness in anyone of them will impacting the overall program. Say you have the technology, process, and supply-chain all completed but the people is not ready. Can you launch the new capability? Thus, when organizations consider these larger endeavors, this aspect of relatedness as well as strategic alignment becomes pivotal to the ultimate success.

I recall a terrific article from McKinsey wherein it was stated, “On average, large IT projects run 45 percent over budget and 7 percent over time, while delivering 56 percent less value than predicted. Software projects run the highest risk of cost and schedule overruns.”  Don’t despair, despite the formidable statistics, large organizations can engineer IT projects that defy the odds, let me share with you that quick read at McKinsey titled, “Delivering large-scale IT projects on time, on Budget, and on Value” By Michael Bloch, Sven Blumberg, and Jürgen Laartz.  – Prof. Dr. Te Wu, the founder Project Management training firm PMO Advisory is among the few people in the world certified in Project (PMP), Program (PgMP), Portfolio (PfMP), and Risk Management (PMI-RMP).