Recognizing Runaway IS Projects When They Occur

Recognizing Runaway IS Projects When They Occur

Joan Ellen Cheney Mann (Old Dominion University, USA)
Copyright: © 2002 |Pages: 8
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-93070-840-2.ch019
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Abstract

Runaway projects have been a problem in information systems (IS) for quite some time. In 1988, KPMG found that 35% of their largest clients currently had a runaway project, and in 1991 the percentage of firms increased to 60%. Plus, over 50% of the respondents considered this to be normal (Rothfeder, 1988; Cringely, 1994). The traditional definition of a runaway is any project that grossly exceeds budget and time targets but yet has failed to produce an acceptable deliverable. Given that each runaway project is a dysfunctional use of organizational resources, it is important for practitioners to be able to identify them early and react appropriately. On the other hand, this case will help practitioners realize that the issues within runaway projects are complex and difficult. The case could be used in MIS courses for non-IS majors, systems analysis and project management classes for IS majors or EDP auditing courses in accounting.

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