Project Management Evolution

“Trying to manage a project without project management is like trying to play a football game without a game plan.”

Since the early Egyptian era project management is being practiced; however, only about half a century ago organizations started applying systematic project management tools and techniques to complex projects. Project in general refers to a new endeavor with specific objective and varies so widely that it is very difficult to precisely define it. During 1950s, modern project management methodologies was employed by the Navy for their Polaris project. After that in the 1960s and 1970s, Department of Defense, NASA, and large E & C companies utilized project management principles and techniques to manage large budget as well as timeline-driven projects. In the 1980s, manufacturing and software development sectors started to adopt and implement sophisticated project management practices. By the early 1990s, the project management theories, tools, and techniques were considered as norms and standards that were widely incorporated by various industries and organizations.

Modern project management majorly started somewhere in the 1900s to 1950s, when due to advancements in technology the project timelines were shortened up to some extent. But the major push to the sector came during 1960s to 1980s, with the development of many technologies such as the xerox machine, intel chips, Microsoft, etc. These helped in developing a management system to measure the performance. There are certain parameters to measure the performance of project management, they are- scope, time, and resources. These parameters are interrelated and interactive. During the 1980s and early 1990s, the revolution of IT/IS sector shifted people from using mainframe computer to multitasking personal computer that had high efficiency in managing and controlling complex project schedules. During the period of 1995 and 2000, the project management industry started adopting internet technology in their tasks as it was considered to be more efficient in controlling and managing various aspects of projects.

At present, the project management and construction industry are in the process of exploring new possibilities. Technology advancements have progressed drastically because of which the developments are possible at a much faster rate. The infrastructure and properties being developed are also being incorporated with AI technologies for better efficiency and improved financial outcomes. The industry is on the brink of a large-scale technology-driven transformation. For example, technologies like BIM, 3D printing, geo spatial analytics, etc. has given a new dimension to the project management and construction industry. Digital technologies have the ability to revolutionize this sector by contributing to the conceptualization, creation, and development of cities of tomorrow. Offsite fabrication, prefabricated materials, and modular construction are becoming increasingly popular as a means of overcoming schedule and cost limitations. New construction materials and building methods, such as self-healing concrete, aerogels, and nanomaterials, along with creative construction techniques as mentioned also contribute to the cost optimization. Several developments, such as green construction, which is also getting much attention nowadays, need the use of new and better construction materials. But the innovation is still booming and not have been organized properly yet. The change will lower project life cycle costs, increase efficiency, and lead to improvements in time, quality, and safety. Companies now need to quickly align with the accelerating marketplace and take advantage of the opportunities available in order to avoid future setbacks. Moving away from paper and toward online medium, will help the industry in real-time information sharing, ensure better clarity and communication, as well as aid in rapid progress and risk analysis, quality assurance, and, ultimately, help in achieving better and more dependable outcomes.

“A good plan today is better that a better plan tomorrow”

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