Design of Final Year Project Management System

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Proceedings of the 35th Hawaii International Conference on System Sciences - 2002

Collaborative Project Management Software
Nicholas C. Romano, Jr. Oklahoma State University Nicholas-Romano@MSTM.OKState.EDU Fang Chen University of Arizona Jay F. Nunamaker, Jr. University of Arizona Abstract Project Management (PM) principles are rapidly changing due to business globalization and information technology (IT) advances which support distributed and virtual project teams. Traditional PM focuses on a single project at a single location [11] and is more concerned with project inputs and outputs than with the project work itself [42]. Traditional PM emphasizes scheduling, planning and tracking [11]. The PM paradigm has begun to shift due to the increasing number of distributed projects involving team members from different sites, organizations, and cultures [23]. Current and future PM will be more concerned with project work and processes, and collaboration will become essential for success. Academics and practitioners have begun to discuss project management in terms of collaboration; however, there is little agreement as to a definition or interpretation of collaboration. One of the major changes in PM, over the last 25 years, has been the use of computerized tools and methods [17]. In the future, the most significant change in PM may be the use of collaboration [17]. In the article, we provide an explanation of different levels of collaboration, namely, communicative, collective, coordinated, and concerted. Then we describe prototype collaborative project management software (C-PMS) to support ‘concertedlevel’ collaboration among project team members. We believe that C-PMS that supports all levels of collaboration, especially the concerted level, can increase the efficiency and effectiveness of project managers and team members. international mergers are increasing the need for partnerships across organizational, cultural, and national boundaries. IT advancements have made collaboration in distributed modes possible, technologies like Group Support Systems (GSS) and videoconferencing enable people to collaborate across dispersed geographical areas. The trend toward business globalization and the advancement of IT has given rise to new organizational forms called ‘virtual organizations’ [4, 11, 13]. Both traditional organizations and virtual organizations may employ ‘virtual projects’ involving team members from different geographical sites, organizations and cultures [27]. The challenge of virtual PM is supporting collaboration among the people working at different sites, different times or in different organizations. Collaboration can consume a significant amount of project workers’ time. As more companies and industries move toward electronic commerce and digital business a large percentage of projects involve software development. “Studies of co-located development teams in large (software) projects have shown that up to 70% of developer’s time is spent collaborating [22] , and 85% of project costs can be accounted for by team activities [7] ” [14]. More traditional projects may also require fair amounts of collaboration. Helbrough [17] found that for a major business projects between 25% and 30% of total project man-days was spent for collaboration. Since collaboration is an important part of the PM, successful management of collaboration may increase productivity and decrease project costs. PM must consider different project aspects. PM can be defined as ‘a special way of organizing, planning and controlling to create defined changes or products with predictable cost, time and quality’ [17]. PM thus involves managing financial issues, risks, resources, schedules, quality, and processes. Each of these areas must be

1. Introduction
PM fundamentals are changing due to business [23] and technological forces [45]. Market globalization and

Proceedings of the 35th Annual...
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