IPMA International Project Management Association
7 November 2019 / 12:00

The Future of Project Management: Global Outlook 2019

The demands of connected and digital organizations operating in disrupted and rapidly changing landscapes dominated by challenges of the speed of integration are applying new levels of challenge to project and programme management across the world. The joint survey of AIPM, KPMG and IPMA reveal the future of project management lies in how the profession responds to these challenges. This will involve how PM Leaders adapt to increasingly agile delivery approaches and effectively utilise and leverage the powerful benefits promised through data analytics, advanced collaboration tools, the use of artificial intelligence and robotics to drive traditional PMO functions.

Nearly 500 participants from 57 countries across a broad range of industries come to the conclusion that truly successful project management will be more strategic with the increased focus on working with business leaders to rapidly deploy benefits incrementally to support the overall business strategy. They will have well-rounded business skills and be well versed in change management, negotiating and presenting clear communications to their stakeholders. They will be connected and understand how their projects impact the wider business they serve. Nonetheless, they also see consistent and traditional challenges continuing to present in the form of governance and project financial management practices that impair project delivery performance.

By looking at the results we see strong signs of positivity with an overwhelming sense the future remains bright for those individuals who develop strong project delivery leadership skills. The future business continues to have strong demands on responding to change with projects. The nature of these projects will be increasingly connected with traditional boundaries between business areas and projects dissolving. Accordingly, we see future project managers needing to be more collaborative and engaging rather than process bound. Able to respond to uncertainty and handle complexity, the future PM will be able to lead change and be genuine partners to their project business owners in striving to deliver strategic benefits rather than mere products.

Some of the key findings are:

  • We need to change the way we manage projects: Only 19% of organisations deliver successful projects, at least most of the time, 44% are likely to deliver projects that meet original goal and business intent, 30% are delivered on time and 36% on budget, 46% of projects are delivered with stakeholder satisfaction.
  • The future needs more agility to handle complexity: 47% of organisations are using agile delivery approaches and 8% globally reported using Artificial Intelligence tools to support their projects
  • The PMO must change of die: 40% of organisations use a centralised PMO to coordinate projects. However, 30% of organisations have disestablished a centralised PMO in the past two years
  • Key skill areas for improvement for Project Managers are: Leading change
    in the organisation (34%), difficult conversations and conflict management (30%), and delegating authority effectively (26%)
  • The future is bright for connected project managers: 74% of respondents think that, in the future, PM skills will be more important than today, 66% say PMs in their organisation are perceived with a positive image, and 36% rate the effectiveness of management in creating a project friendly culture as being very or extremely effective

To read and download the SUMMARY REPORT of “The Future of Project Management: Global Outlook 2019 Survey” click HERE

To read and download FULL REPORT  “The Future of Project Management: Global Outlook 2019”, KPMG, AIPM and IPMA Project Management Survey – click HERE 


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Author of this post

Reinhard Wagner has been active for more than 35 years in the field of project-related leadership, in such diverse sectors as Automotive, Engineering, and Consultancy, as well as various not-for-profit organizations. As Managing Director of Tiba Managementberatung GmbH, a leading PM Consultancy in Munich/Germany, he supports executives of industrial clients in transforming their companies towards a project-oriented, adaptive and sustainably successful organization. Reinhard Wagner has published 36 books as well as several hundred articles and blog posts in the field of project, program and project portfolio management. In more than 20 years of voluntary engagement he served the German Project Management Association (GPM) as well as the IPMA in various roles and was granted for his international commitment with the Honorary Membership of several IPMA Member Associations.