Project Management Assignment: Effect of Agile Methodology on Zamil Industrial Group
Task: Write a well-structured research report on project management assignmentcritically discussing the impact of Project Management Methodology on the Organizational Success. Conduct a qualitative study at the Construction Companies in Saudi Arabia.
Topic: A qualitative study at the Construction Companies in Saudi Arabia
Background OfProject Management Assignment
“Construction is concerned with optimism; it is concerned with facing the future with confidence”. Thus, it is important to have clear project management methodologies, especially for the construction management industry as it is what sets the base for the project which if built correctly can stand for a very long time. Therefore, it even helps every part of the business to run smoothly and guides the team towards working on the tasks which can bring quality results for the company. This further helps in getting tasks done effectively and efficiently, by staying on track with the budgets and on time under complete control. The below report contributes to the project management techniques to the organizational success of Zamil Industrial group to find its effectiveness. For achieving the objectives of the company, the study has been assessed. This company was founded in the year 1998, is headquartered at Dammam, Saudi Arabia as Zamil Industrial Investment Company, and offers innovative designs and engineering solutions for use in the construction industry. The vision of the company is to become the industry leader for creating superior value for various businesses and communities. The company follows an agile approach to project management in its company. However, there are various problems associated with the project management technique and methodology applied by the company. These challenges are scope creep (when the client doesn’t know what they want), Lack of communication in the project management, lack of clarity in goals and success criterion, budgetary expenses issue, lack of adequate skills among the employees of Zamil, inadequate risk management, lack of accountability of the project manager, limited engagement of the stakeholders of the company, impractical deadlines and many more.
The present report thus studies challenges faced by the company by following the “agile project management” technique in the company.
Therefore, the report briefly studies the research question-
“How can the Zamil industrial group use the agile methodology to impact the company’s success”
As reported by Zilberova et al., (2020, p. 20), A construction company is responsible for various functions like securing permits as soon as possible based on which the project timeline is designed. Further, the company is responsible for procuring supplies required for building the project, sourcing equipment, workers, and subcontractors needed to complete the project on the decided time with a designated budget. Moreover, the company is also responsible for supervising the construction process and ensuring that the workers are working safely, and the project also attains the required quality standards.
Agile project management
As highlighted by Nugraha et al., (2019, p. 201), this methodology is followed by the Zamil Industrial group for servicing the construction needs of the market. This method of project management focuses on breaking down the project into several phases to design the entire plan of building the project. This method is used when constant collaboration is required with stakeholders for continuous improvement and makes various choices of decision required during the creation of the project. However, once the work begins the team goes under a cycle of planning, execution, and evaluation of the tasks completed by the workers. As evidenced by Abramov et al., (2018, p. 66), various principles are followed in this type of project management. These principles are as follows- satisfying customers through early and continuous delivery of the project, in case of construction it can be delivered ready to shift floors of the building. The second most important principle of this technique is welcoming changing requirements even late in the project as these kinds of projects require big monetary investments thus client satisfaction is of utmost importance for the company. As mentioned above the company needs to deliver value frequently as not abiding by it can lead to a change of contract to other companies in the middle of completing the project. As per the view of Górecki et al., (2019, p. 160), this also requires the company to avoid silly mistakes as it can cost heavily to the stakeholders and the builder of the project. Since this type of project management requires a long time and heavy investments thus it is also suggested to build such projects by self-motivated workers and leaders as it can even take their few years of life to construct and complete the project. Furthermore, this type of project management technique uses face-to-face interaction for communication as the cost of completing the project and mistakes can even lead to losses to the stakeholders and management of the Zamil group. Moreover, the company uses working software to measure the progress of the project as it is a long-term project therefore it becomes difficult for the manager to monitor all the operations going on in the project track manually.
As per the view of Vetrova et al., (2018, p. 1276), this type of methodology also suggests maintaining a sustainable working pace so that the whole project can be completed in the given timeline otherwise the wait to launch can also cost heavily to the stakeholders of the company. Since it is a very heavy investment kind of project thus it becomes important for the Zamil group to maintain simplicity in operations in communications otherwise it delays the whole completion time of the project. Moreover, the principles of the project all suggest that during the project the freedom to organize the raw materials and the team must be flexible to ensure motivation among team members and the optimum value is generated from the members. Lastly, the agile project management technique also works on the principle of regular reflection so that the project is working on track while maintaining all the quality standards of the project as one must adjust their way of working as per the situation to boost the effectiveness of the designated project.
As mentioned by AboAbdo et al., (2019, p. 463), the research sampling was conducted by using the data collected from the company’s officials and employees. It was so because those are the best source of information as they know the real picture of the company on how well the “agile project management methodology” is followed in the company. These are the people who can identify the scope of improvement in the company as they can tell the principles which are not followed in the company or need improvement so that the project management is conducted more effectively and efficiently. These data sources were selected by qualitative data conducted among the sources of literature derived from the company’s website and other related journals and articles.
Data collection technique
As observed by Wu et al., (2019, p. 269), the data collection technique used for conducting the research was literature search using online methods of data collection and research. This type of data collection involves researching primarily using the website of the company to find all the people with whom one can directly get connected to derive the required information for the research. The research also used various articles and studies conducted by people like Braun and Clarke to understand the key flow of conducting this type of research. Moreover, the literature was sourced using various textbooks as well since a thematic analysis was conducted to research the topic which is to evaluate the impact of the agile project management technique applied by the Zamil industrial group towards the success of the organization. These sources of data collection were used to make the research more authentic and reliable and find the key functions and principles of the agile methodology which is used for the organizational success of the construction company Zamil industrial group. Moreover, it helped an in-depth understanding of the topic and various project management theories and methodologies which can be applied as per the company. Furthermore it also helped in understanding the research which is already conducted before conducting the new research on the same things and helped in deriving the contexts which can be chosen to conduct the research further to find the impact of various project management techniques towards the success of the organization(Lapiduset al., 2019, p. 79).
Analytical technique - thematic analysis
As per the view of Quelhas et al., (2019, p. 63), within psychology, thematic analysis is just ainadequately defined, less acknowledged, but extensively utilized qualitative analytic instrument. This study provides an approach to qualitative data analysis that is both easy to get to and abstractly adaptable. In this research, there are defined thematic analyses and place them in context with other qualitative analytical techniques that look for themes or patterns, as well as various epistemological and ontological perspectives (Braun and Clarke, 2006). Further clarity in instructions to people who are engaged in conduction of thematic analysis or are tasked to do it more carefully and rigorouslyand also discuss potential dangers (Masuinet al., 2019, p. 2).
As per the view of Osorio et al., (2020, p. 368), finally, the drawbacks and benefits of thematic analysis were also discussed. Thus, the study recommended a few theme analyses as a beneficial and flexible tool for descriptive study within and outside of psychology. Thus, this research was conducted under a six-step process of thematic analysis to understand the effectiveness of the agile project management technique in the company and understand how time management can be improved by the leaders and project managers of the company. The six-step process which was involved was familiarization, coding, generating themes upon which the research needs to be conducted followed by reviewing the themes and writing the research in the required academic format.
Measures of reliability
As per the view of Gasparik et al., (2018, p. 5), there were various measures of reliability that were used to maintain the authenticity of the research. These measures of reliability refer to the consistency of the measurement of the research. These tests can be conducted over time by the test-retest reliability, further, it can be checked across the internal items or the methods of the research to check the consistency maintained internally during the research. Lastly, the authenticity of information can be checked by checking it across different researchers which are also termed inter-rater reliability which is conducted to check whether all the sources have concluded the same thing, are there any advancement which has taken place in the research, or is there any wrong which is interpreted or depicted out of the research (Halianet al., 2020, p. 118).
Results and discussion
Data structure diagram
Figure 1: Data Structure Diagram
(Source: Created by the Author)
Explanation of themes
According to the perspectives of Cooper and Sommer (2018, p. 25), project management methodology is defined as a complete system of methods, principles, and rules for managing a project. Organizations can benefit from it in multiple ways including standardization of processes, incorporation of common knowledge, and the comprehension of the knowledge of how to manage the project.
Theme 1 - Issues faced in timely completion of projects
As opined by Stoddard et al., (2019, p. 452), project management is a comprehensive and inclusive task and requires equal participation of all team members for timely completion of projects. The major issues faced by Zamil Industrial group in the execution of projects are lack of transparent and direct mediums of communication, inadequate skills of the employees, lack of planning in risk management, and lack of accountability. Zamil Industrial group is a growing construction company in Saudi Arabia and has several ongoing projects active at a time. It becomes difficult in such a scenario to manage all projects at a time and ensure appropriate resource allocation to each project (zamilindustrial.com). The project managers of the Zamil Industrial group are highly experienced in their respective professions however inadequate organizational culture and structure presence hinders their optimal operations. The managers of the projects have complained of a lack of adequate lines of communication, lower availability of skilled force, and lack of appropriate risk management forecasts and strategies among the higher management of the construction group (Corley andGioia, 2004). This inadequacy hinders the operations of the project and affects processes such as logistics which subsequently lead to delays in resource allocation and pushes back the timelines of the completion of projects.
Theme 2 - Effectiveness of Agile approach of project management
To improve the processes involved in project management at various sites of the company, the management at Zamil Industrial group utilizes the Agile approach of project management. As stated by Olteanu (2018, p. 23), this methodology relies on the division of the entire project phases into several phases, and consideration of each of them on a priority basis. To get improved results and enhanced outcomes the methodology entails collaboration with relevant stakeholders at every stage of the project management process. As stated by Corley and Gioia (2004), this benefits in the creation of an inclusive atmosphere at work and collaboration with relevant stakeholders at every stage makes the project resource centric and induces pressure on the subsequent team members for timely completion of the specified task. The Agile approach emphasizes the use of two major frameworks Scrum and Kanban (Johnson and Babu, 2020, p. 420). Scrum is concerned with time-bound projects that are iterated after fixed length durations, while Kanban emphasizes the procedure of incessant releases. The subsequent steps of this approach involve the preparation of a plan, estimation of completion time, and execution.
Issues faced in timely completion of projects
Project management is an inclusive process and requires involvement of relevant stakeholders during the decision making process of the project management. Zamil Industrial group is a multinational company involved in several activities related to construction and manufacture of construction material resources (Krueger et al., 2018, p. 1755). This envisages that the company has several ongoing projects functional at a time and management of all such activities is hectic. The major issues reported include lack of communication and inadequate supply of skilled labour force. Saudi Arabia is known to export a large amount of workforce from other middle east countries or other Asian countries, as a skilled labour force is not available in abundance within this region.
Effectiveness of Agile approach of Project Management
The Agile Project Management approach envisions two major frameworks, Scrub and Kanban. The segregation of the frameworks has been made on the basis of their applicability in differing project scenarios. As mentioned by Densfordet al., (2018, p. 100), this approach benefits the management in judicious division of work in distinct phases of the project. Another significant importance of this approach is it induces the concept of inclusion of relevant stakeholders at every stage of the project thus ensuring adequate involvement in the decision-making process of the project management and execution.
Discussion of findings
The data accumulated through research on the impact of project management methodology in the achievement of organizational success highlights some key themes which have been discussed in this study. The data findings highlight the issues that Zamil Industrial group has been utilizing to conduct its exercise of project management in the construction segment of the business. Through the sources and by the estimation of the essence of the data it can be said that the company majorly lacks transparency in the process of communication and skilled workforce. Communication is an integral part of project management that ensures higher collaboration levels among individuals and also benefits in easing the entire process of management. The implementation of appropriate communication strategies leads to the creation of an atmosphere that entails a free flow of information and innovative ideas to enhance the efficiency of the entire process. The study highlights the major issues that are being faced by the organization and also discusses the current approach being used for project management by Zamil Industrial group.
How do your findings relate to the literature
The findings discussed above are in complete sync with the literature review made during the preparation of this study. The literature review through assessment of various sources highlights the issues that are being faced by the business entity in project management and also mentions the use of the Agile approach of project management. The same issues are discussed in the finding section of this study and to better understand the approach being implemented a study on the effectiveness of the Agile methodology has also been done. The two sections of findings and literature review discuss the same issues at length and in relevance to the functioning of the company. Thus, it can be summarized that the two aspects are coherently linked with each other.
The key rationale of the research was to find out the effect of the project management techniques on the success of the organization Zamil group of companies which is a construction company focusing upon offering innovative designs and manufacturing solutions for use in the construction industry. The vision of the company is to become the industry leader for creating superior value for various businesses and communities. The company follows an Agile approach to project management in its company. Thus, the literature research was conducted using the company’s website, journals, books, and various resources to find the research which has already been conducted based on the selected topic.
The findings of the research were conducted based on two themes that are the effectiveness of the project management approach applied by the company and how it is causing various challenges in the company further. Future research can be conducted on the directions of how these challenges can be eliminated by the company while working on its project. These researchers can use the following aspects to improve the challenges faced during project management. Firstly, getting the priorities and decisions in place to avoid confusion and wastage of time and money which was allowed in the agile approach. Furthermore, working on the ability to influence through strong inter and intrapersonal relationships among the project managers and the workers. Moreover, strengthening the servant leadership skills to get the project completed efficiently and effectively brings to building team’s focus sticking to key deadlines and making learning an integral part of the operations of the company and thus build innovative and creative solutions for other businesses and fulfil the vision and mission of various companies.
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