Last week there was a PMO related seminar held by AtTask, the project management software organisation. I decided to go along to see if this event would be of interest to PMO Flashmobbers (I bumped into a couple there too – a tiny PMO world). The title of the event, “The PMO is Evolving” sounded promising, as did the location, the top floor of the Tate Modern!
Unfortunately for me, the seminar didn’t really deliver much in terms of PMO content – project management content yes, nitty-gritty PMO is evolving content, sadly no. Are my expectations too high? Or did I get it wrong? I still think we can have PMO seminars that don’t slip into project delivery related talks (as good as they were, especially the talk from Stephen Carver on Complex Projects, there’s a little video here)
There was however two Executive Brief brochures worth picking up and having a browse through – “5 Things You Hate About Your Project Management Tools” and “Why Project Management is Broken – And Three Ways to Fix It“. You’ve got to hand it to AtTask they certainly like their headlines to hook! Interestingly I can’t find a download on their website, here’s another source if you’re interested and an on-demand webinar
The top five things you hate about your project management tools included:
- Your team members won’t use it
- It’s nearly impossible to track project conversations
- There is no easy way to manage ad hoc requests
- They don’t work the way you do
- It’s extremely difficult to see the right picture
I’m sure many of you have some stories to tell around these five – and can probably think of a dozen more, yes?
Project management is broken is perhaps just a little over the top. The executive brief talks about how much time is taken up by unplanned and urgent activities including all the other things we do like updating status reports and time spent in meetings.In other words “word” vs “project work”. The next broken bit was about how many mixed methodologies we’re all working with now and how much harder that is and the third is that we’re enforcing the tools on people and they don’t necessarily like it (OK I’m paraphrasing).
So project management is not broken (AtTask had us worried for a minute there), it’s just about how we work together in today’s world and thinking about how we can get the work done in the best way.