The Community Blog for Business Analysts

Craig Brown
Craig Brown

26 reasons why projects succeed or fail

There are several studies out there that identify why projects go wrong and what you have to have in place to make sure they have a chance. Naturally the readers of Modern Analyst (and are aware of the importance of good requirements management, a theme which permeates the list below, culled from a range of PM literature[1]
You will have heard of many, if not all of these issues before. Today I want to put them into a new context for you; that of the business analysts’ role on projects and what you can do to help your project achieve success.
Consider firstly the degree to which the business analyst can control, influence or block each of these issues, then reflect on your personal experience. What techniques have you applied in these areas, and how effective were they? 
Critical Factors for Projects
  1. Support from senior management
  2. Clear realistic objectives
  3. Strong/detailed plan kept up to date
  4. Good communication/ feedback
  5. User/client involvement
  6. Skilled/suitably qualified/sufficient staff/team
  7. Effective change management
  8. Competent project manager
  9. Strong business case/sound basis for project
  10. Sufficient/well allocated resources
  11. Good leadership
  12. Proven/familiar technology
  13. Realistic schedule
  14. Risks addressed/ assessed/ managed
  15. Project sponsor/champion
  16. Effective monitoring/control
  17. Adequate budget
  18. Organizational adaptation/culture/ structure
  19. Good performance by suppliers/ contractors/ consultants
  20. Planned close down/review/ acceptance of possible failure
  21. Training provision
  22. Political stability
  23. Correct choice/ past experience of project management methodology/tools
  24. Environmental influences
  25. Learning from Past experience
  26. Appreciating Different viewpoints
Now your mission, should you choose to accept it, comes in two stages.
Firstly comment below sharing your stories, and secondly go back to your project and see what you can do differently to help your team deliver success.

[1] I picked up this list from a doctoral thesis I read, but the copy I saw did not have the Author’s name on it.
This entry was published on Mar 25, 2008 / Craig Brown. Posted in Project Management, Soft Skills, Leadership & Management. Bookmark the Permalink or E-mail it to a friend.
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