Project management has evolved from a management philosophy restricted to a few functional areas and regarded as something nice to have to an enterprise project management system affecting every functional unit of the company. Simply stated, project management has evolved into a business process rather than merely a project management process. More and more companies are now regarding project management as being mandatory for the survival of the firm. Organizations that were opponents of project management are now advocates.
Management educators of the past, who preached that project management could not work and would be just another fad, are now staunch supporters. Project management is here to stay. Colleges and universities are now offering graduate degrees in project management. The text discusses the principles of project management. Students who are interested in advanced topics, such as some of the material in Chapters 21 to 24 of this text, may wish to read one of my other texts, Advanced Project Management:
Best Practices in Implementation (Hoboken, NJ: Wiley, 2004), and Project Management Best Practices: Achieving Global Excellence (Hoboken, NJ: Wiley, 2006). John Wiley & Sons will also be introducing a five-book series on project management best practices, co-authored by Frank Saladis and Harold Kerzner, to accompany the above two books.
This book is addressed not only to those undergraduate and graduate students who wish to improve upon their project management skills but also to those functional managers and upper-level executives who serve as project sponsors and must provide continuous support for projects. During the past several years, management's knowledge and understanding of project management has matured to the point where almost every company is using project management in one form or another. These companies have come to the realization that project management and productivity are related and that we are now managing our business as though it is a series of projects.
Project management coursework is now consuming more of training budgets than ever before. General reference is provided in the text to engineers. However, the reader should not consider project management as strictly engineering related. The engineering examples are the result of the fact that project management first appeared in the engineering disciplines, and we should be willing to learn from their mistakes. Project management now resides in every profession, including information systems, health care, consulting, pharmaceutical, banks, and government agencies.
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