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Post‐project changes: occurrence, causes, and countermeasures

Post‐project changes: occurrence, causes, and countermeasures Purpose – This purpose of this paper is to investigate the volume and background of changes done shortly after project completion. Design/methodology/approach – To ensure a consistent set of projects, selection criteria were related to project budget, time of completion, and executing institution. Data collection included an initial survey followed by interviews. Findings – The study identified frequency and extent of changes/alterations within a certain period after project completion as well as the dominating causes for such changes. Research limitations/implications – The study is based on a limited number of projects and from three specific Norwegian agencies. Future research should include a larger sample, possibly also covering other sectors. Practical implications – If acted upon, the suggestions for countermeasures can contribute to reducing or preventing post‐project changes. The findings indicate a need for new performance measures for projects, as the classical parameters provide motivation to project managers and their teams to focus on project cost and timely delivery, rather than the life‐cycle cost. Social implications – In sectors experiencing a widespread occurrence of changes after project completion, this could mean that cost overruns or functionality beyond what was sanctioned by the financing bodies are “hidden” in this type of change work. If so, this prevents sponsors and society from seeing the real project cost, and is clearly a misuse of resources. Originality/value – This paper contributes to the limited literature focusing on changes after project completion. The paper includes material that may help project managers and project owners avoid post‐project changes and the costs and inconvenience associated with such changes. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png International Journal of Managing Projects in Business Emerald Publishing

Post‐project changes: occurrence, causes, and countermeasures

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Publisher
Emerald Publishing
Copyright
Copyright © 2011 Emerald Group Publishing Limited. All rights reserved.
ISSN
1753-8378
DOI
10.1108/17538371111120261
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Purpose – This purpose of this paper is to investigate the volume and background of changes done shortly after project completion. Design/methodology/approach – To ensure a consistent set of projects, selection criteria were related to project budget, time of completion, and executing institution. Data collection included an initial survey followed by interviews. Findings – The study identified frequency and extent of changes/alterations within a certain period after project completion as well as the dominating causes for such changes. Research limitations/implications – The study is based on a limited number of projects and from three specific Norwegian agencies. Future research should include a larger sample, possibly also covering other sectors. Practical implications – If acted upon, the suggestions for countermeasures can contribute to reducing or preventing post‐project changes. The findings indicate a need for new performance measures for projects, as the classical parameters provide motivation to project managers and their teams to focus on project cost and timely delivery, rather than the life‐cycle cost. Social implications – In sectors experiencing a widespread occurrence of changes after project completion, this could mean that cost overruns or functionality beyond what was sanctioned by the financing bodies are “hidden” in this type of change work. If so, this prevents sponsors and society from seeing the real project cost, and is clearly a misuse of resources. Originality/value – This paper contributes to the limited literature focusing on changes after project completion. The paper includes material that may help project managers and project owners avoid post‐project changes and the costs and inconvenience associated with such changes.

Journal

International Journal of Managing Projects in BusinessEmerald Publishing

Published: Apr 5, 2011

Keywords: Project management; Change management; Construction industry; Railways; Roads; Norway

References