Project Management Assessment Methods

Project Management Assessment Methods

Mysore Narayanan (Miami University, USA)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-60566-400-2.ch021
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Abstract

In this chapter, the author describes how one can implement and incorporate creative techniques to design, develop, document and disseminate a systematic process for conducting assessment, whether it be in a multinational corporation or it be in a small business environment. The author accomplishes this by providing models, samples and established guidelines for effectively using assessment results for continuous quality improvement. The author focuses on the importance of adopting modern techniques and stresses that technology should not be viewed just as a growing trend. The author shows how technology can be intelligently implemented as an invaluable assessment tool that can quickly identify areas for improvement so that a given corporation can continue to climb the ladder of success in a competitive global market of the 21st Century.
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Introduction

Assessment, by itself, in simple terms and in principle, may apply to a wide variety of disciplines and can be interpreted in multiple ways. For example, one may discuss performance assessment of an individual employee assigned to manage a specific technology project. On the other hand, the long term strategic planning process and operational methodology of a senior executive in a multinational corporation can be assessed. A team of police officers, paramedics, fire marshals and rescue officials may visit the site of an accident and assess the situation. Another example may be taken from educational establishments and accreditation agencies. For educators, assessment of student learning is a highly structured process that involves recording, reviewing, reflecting and reporting essential results for purposes of continuous quality improvement.

Assessment is not just procurement of data. Meaningful data must be methodically collected, correctly correlated and instinctively interpreted. Properly tabulated and viewed, assessment data will provide important information that can further be used to significantly improve the existing situation, whether it be project management, long term planning, marketing analysis, customer support, clientele interaction or student learning. The primary of objective of assessment must be to promote overall growth and enhance professional development. Executives, Employers, Educators and Administrators are therefore able to obtain valuable insight from analyzing gathered data in a systematic and scientific manner.

Assessment is essential for the successful operation of all types of ventures, whether they be small businesses, commercial establishments, large companies, retail outlets, industrial conglomerates or multinational corporations. Active assessment techniques provide useful feedback that can be fruitful in increased productivity, improved efficiency, reduced costs and boosted morale. It has to be recognized that assessment is not just a ‘rehash’ of the company’s annual report, rather must be viewed as a quality improvement tool that is embedded in the governance document of the corporation. Assessment should be at the ‘heart’ of an industrial environment should encompass everything from pre-manufacturing market analysis surveys all the way to post-sales customer support. This obviously implies that a corporation must assess market research separately from manufacturing. They need to assess engineering design separately from customer support. Regardless all these separate assessment data have to be effectively consolidated to provide one ‘big-picture’ that can be representative of the industrial conglomerate’s assessment efforts. It is further recognized that large volumes of data are being collected that need to be standardized, streamlined and systematized for sound, judicial interpretation.

The ultimate objective of assessment practices in an educational establishment should be to examine and determine whether or not the current curriculum of their college is meeting the needs of their designated clientele. Assessment methods should emphasize entire programs and treat the student body as a complete group and document their overall educational accomplishments. It must be observed that assessment in educational establishments is normally classified into two major areas. First is identified as Formative Assessment and is normally administered during the lifetime of a chosen program. This type of assessment is expected to provide immediate feedback as to how the program can be improved, the next time it is implemented. Many instructors consider formative assessment to be a part of routine instructional methodology. The second is known as Summative Assessment and is administered after the program has been in place for some time. The results of summative assessment may help decide whether or not activities pertaining to the selected program should be continued. Some administrators view summative assessment as a measure of accountability. In this chapter the author outlines some techniques for documenting and analyzing assessment data.

While the example chosen by the author may focus on a particular discipline, the reader should recognize the fact the philosophy of assessment methodology can be easily modified and adapted to meet the needs of the individual situation. Some assessment techniques may choose a scale similar to Likert Scale for analyzing the data they have collected.

Appendix A briefly outlines the Likert Scale.

Key Terms in this Chapter

Learning Outcomes: These are statements that outline what employees will acquire as a result of a given activity. They may acquire a certain skill or establish a foundation knowledge base or develop a new attitude or attain a desired condition. Learning Outcomes are supposed to serve as guidelines for assessment and evaluation.

Critical Thinking: Michael Scriven and Richard Paul defined Critical Thinking at the 8th Annual International Conference on Critical Thinking and Education Reform, Summer 1987. According to these Scriven and Paul: Critical thinking is the intellectually disciplined process of actively and skillfully conceptualizing, applying, analyzing, synthesizing, and/or evaluating information gathered from, or generated by, observation, experience, reflection, reasoning, or communication, as a guide to belief and action. In its exemplary form, it is based on universal intellectual values that transcend subject matter divisions clarity, accuracy, precision, consistency, relevance, sound evidence, good reasons, depth, breadth, and fairness

Diversity: The term diversity is used in a different context in this chapter. One is not referring to gender diversity or racial diversity. Diversity of talents and diversity in the form of growth marketing strategy is of great importance to a multinational corporation. The objective is to increase the volume of sales by creating new products aimed at different markets. One is generally looking to enter in to promising business ventures that offer to establish new market share, presently not available.

Protocol: A Protocol is an agreed-upon format for performing a given task. The task may be, for example, assessment, and then the Assessment Protocol defines and determines how assessment is to be conducted and is expected to provide clear guidelines pertaining to the exact procedure that needs to be followed.

Teamwork: Teamwork in a multinational corporation aims at aligning the employee’s mindset to develop the concept of a group of people working in cooperation with each other. It is very important to identify that what may actually appear as teamwork for an outsider, may not necessarily be genuine teamwork for the inside group of people.

Portfolio: Portfolios aim at the documentation of work accomplishments and skills acquired. They are also used to monitor professional development. They are not just two-page resumes. Portfolios document an employee’s capabilities and open a window for his/her future potential.

Rubrics: Rubrics provide guidelines for rating employee performance. It is created in the form of a table or a matrix and provides the officer in charge of assessment with a tool to judge the performance of an employee.

Complete Chapter List

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Editorial Advisory Board
Table of Contents
Foreword
Robert K. Hiltbrand
Preface
Terry T. Kidd
Acknowledgment
Terry T. Kidd
Chapter 1
James W. Price Jr., Pamila Dembla
As exploratory research, the chapter’s aim is to assess if Sun-Tzu’s application of Taoist principles are applicable to the problem domain of... Sample PDF
The Tao To Understanding Enterprise It Project Complexity: Sun-Tzu's Five Factors Revisited
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Chapter 2
A. J. Gilbert Silvius
This chapter describes a study into the expected development of the competences of the project manager in the year 2027. The study was performed... Sample PDF
Project Management 2027: The Future of Project Management
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Chapter 3
Gregory J. Skulmoski, Francis T. Hartman
The purpose of this research was to investigate the soft competencies by project phase that IT project managers, hybrid and technical team members... Sample PDF
The Progression Towards Project Management Competence
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Chapter 4
Ralf Müller
This chapter addresses project managers’ leadership styles, mainly from the perspective of technology projects. It starts by defining and outlining... Sample PDF
Leadership in Technology Project Management
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Chapter 5
Melanie S. Karas, Mahesh S. Raisinghani, Kerry S. Webb
A project manager’s role on any project goes far beyond task-related deliverables. Although the project manager must be able to effectively manage... Sample PDF
The Importance of Leadership in Project Management
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Chapter 6
Jaby Mohammed
This chapter introduces the concept of technology management by objectives. Technology is one of the fastest moving elements in the 21st Century... Sample PDF
Technology Management by Objectives (TMO)
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Chapter 7
Gary Pan
The goal of any product is to be used. In a very real sense, people judge the success or failure of any product by the extent to which it is used by... Sample PDF
Examining Stakeholders' Roles in Influencing IT Project Cancellation Decisions
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Chapter 8
Daniel W. Surry
This chapter will discuss more than 20 system development life cycles (SDLC) found in the Information Technology project management arena, whereby... Sample PDF
Bringing the User into the Project Development Process
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Chapter 9
Evon M. O. Abu-Taieh, Asim A. El Sheikh, Jeihan M. Abu-Tayeh, Maha T. El-Mahied
This chapter uses the Diffusion of Innovations (DOI) theory and examines a business case, highlighting certain gaps in the theory. First, confusion... Sample PDF
Information Technology Projects System Development Life Cycles: Comparative Study
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Chapter 10
Francisco Chia Cua, Tony C. Garrett
This chapter introduces the Firm-Level Value Creation Model as a means of planning Information Systems projects based on their potential for... Sample PDF
Analyzing Diffusion and Value Creation Dimensions of a Business Case of Replacing Enterprise Systems
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Chapter 11
Otavio Prospero Sanchez, Alberto Luiz Albertin
In this chapter the authors investigate the management of service innovation projects; can ICT based service innovation be facilitated by... Sample PDF
IT Project Planning based on Business Value Generation
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Chapter 12
Bendik Bygstad, Gjermund Lanestedt
This chapter provides a framework for technology project implementation in systems where the human is an integral element of the completed project.... Sample PDF
Managing ICT Based Service Innovation
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Chapter 13
Katy E. Ellis
Project management is a carefully planned, organized effort to manage the resources in order to successfully accomplish specific project goals and... Sample PDF
Employee Preparation, Participation, and Performance
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Chapter 14
Jaby Mohammed, Ali Alavizadeh
This chapter provides a fundamental yet comprehensive coverage of quality management. Bringing managers and engineers the most up-to-date quality... Sample PDF
Quality Assurance in Project Management
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Chapter 15
Sohail Anwar
Project management is a carefully planned, organized effort to manage the resources in order to successfully accomplish specific project goals and... Sample PDF
Quality Management and Control
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Chapter 16
Dawn M. Owens, Deepak Khazanchi
Successful implementation of IT (information technology) projects is a critical strategic and competitive necessity for firms in all industrial... Sample PDF
Software Quality Assurance
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Chapter 17
Fayez Ahmad Albadri
An overwhelming number of Information Technology (IT) projects experience persistent problems and failures. This chapter reflects on some of the... Sample PDF
IPRM: The Integrated Project Risk Model
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Chapter 18
Technical Risk Management  (pages 283-294)
Pete Hylton
In today’s highly competitive industrial environment, many high-tech businesses are using Technical Risk Management (TRM) in their engineering... Sample PDF
Technical Risk Management
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Chapter 19
Lauren Fancher
IT projects across all sectors are relying on more iterative methodologies that can employ early and frequent assessment and evaluation processes in... Sample PDF
Early, Often, and Repeat: Assessment and Evaluation Methodology for Ensuring Stakeholder Satisfaction with Information Technology Projects
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Chapter 20
Chad J. Cray
Considering the high failure rate of information technology (IT) projects over the last 40 years, project managers should use all the tools at their... Sample PDF
A Needle in a Haystack: Choosing the Right Development Methodology for IT Projects
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Chapter 21
Mysore Narayanan
In this chapter, the author describes how one can implement and incorporate creative techniques to design, develop, document and disseminate a... Sample PDF
Project Management Assessment Methods
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Chapter 22
Mario Vanhoucke
It is well-known that well managed and controlled projects are more likely to be delivered on time and within budget. The construction of a... Sample PDF
Static and Dynamic Determinants of Earned Value Based Time Forecast Accuracy
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Chapter 23
Michele De Lorenzi
This chapter presents a technology exploration process designed to support service innovation for information and communication technologies in a... Sample PDF
Technology Exploration Process: From Technology to New Services
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Chapter 24
Henryk R. Marcinkiewicz
Three models structure the planning for technology integration into instruction. Institutional needs are assessed for three dimensions suggested in... Sample PDF
Planning for Integrating Technology
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Chapter 25
Michael Crow
Kansas State University has ensured greatly increased academic involvement in the implementation of its new student information system through the... Sample PDF
University Task Force Deepens Academic Involvement in ERP System
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Chapter 26
Joni A. Amorim, Carlos Machado, Rosana G.S. Miskulin, Mauro S. Miskulin
The production of quality educational multimedia content involves both its publication and its use, considering aspects ranging from metadata... Sample PDF
Production, Publication, and Use of Educational Multimedia Content in Brazil: Challenges and Opportunities in Real World Technology Projects
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Chapter 27
Hasan Tinmaz
Technology planning is an indispensable activity for all higher education institutions nowadays. The major purpose of the technology planning is to... Sample PDF
Instructional Technology Plans for Higher Education Institutions
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Chapter 28
Patricia McGee, Veronica Diaz
The rapid proliferation of e-learning tools that offer low or no cost investment and are not housed on institutional servers, has made it very... Sample PDF
Shifting from Classroom to Online Delivery
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Chapter 29
Bimal P. Nepal, Leslie Monplaisir
Original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) in automotive industry are faced with the conflicting goals of creating vehicles with higher reliability... Sample PDF
Lean and Global Product Development in Auto Industry
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Chapter 30
Debra D. Orosbullard
The business world is running at a faster pace than ever before. Globalization has partnered the world and new ways of doing business to meet... Sample PDF
Future Trends: Global Projects & Virtual Teaming
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Chapter 31
Geoffrey Corb, Stephen Hellen
Social networking technologies—such as Wikis, blogs and instant messaging—are increasingly being employed in business settings to support... Sample PDF
Wiki-enabled Technology Management
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Chapter 32
Owen G. McGrath
Higher education IT project managers have always relied on user activity data as logged in one form or another. Summarized counts of users and... Sample PDF
Mining User Activity Data In Higher Education Open Systems: Trends, Challenges, and Possibilities
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