PKB41AB IBM Project Management Case Study Question

IBM Project Management Assignment

SECTION A – 28 Marks

CASE STUDY: READ THE EXTRACT BELOW AND ANSWER THE QUESTIONS THAT FOLLOW:

On February 5, 1997, the IBM Project Management Centre of Excellence (PMCOE) was born with a charter to drive IBM’s transition to and support of professional project management worldwide, a competency deemed necessary to ensure effectiveness and success within a matrix enterprise.

IBM

Since its inception, the IBM PMCOE—working hand in hand with all business units worldwide—ensured that we became a project-based enterprise that applies and integrates project Management disciplines into all core business processes and systems.

The initial charter drove more consistent and broader use of project management disciplines, including the formalization of the position of project manager throughout our organization.

Over time, the IBM PMCOE has driven the transformation and integration of project management into the fabric of the organization. Our professionals are more experienced and capable in their abilities to get their work done using project management disciplines.

In addition to being one of the world’s largest IT and consulting services company, IBM is a global business and technology leader, innovating in research and development to shape the future of society at large.

Today, we see ourselves as much more than an Information Technology Company. In April 2016, IBM’s Chairman, President and CEO, Ginni Rometty described the dawn of a new era, shaped by AI computing and cloud platforms. She described how the IT industry is fundamentally re-ordering at an unprecedented pace. In response, IBM is becoming much more than a “hardware, software, services” company. We are emerging as an AI solutions and cloud Platform Company.

Fundamental to the success of this transformation is the skills and abilities of our workforce. We are being challenged to be relevant to the marketplace of tomorrow. As a focus on continuous learning, we have Think40 where we are encouraged to spend 40 hours every year to up-skill.

We are encouraged to have a point of view, be socially eminent and be comfortable in a customer facing situation. We are provided with the tools and techniques, including new ways of learning such as video, gaming and interactive eLearning techniques to enable this objective. New phrases and concepts are creeping into the everyday vocabulary of our teams, such as agile, design thinking, calculated risk-taking and better collaboration.

IBM’s PMCOE is no exception to this transformation—and 2017 marked the 20th anniversary of the Centre of Excellence, which clearly shows our ongoing commitment to project management as a key profession within the corporation.

Our PM curriculum is delivered globally and across all lines of business, helping to drive a consistent base of terminology and understanding across the company. And our project and program management profession has established an end-to end process to “quality assure” progress through the project management career path.

Source: (https://www.pmi.org/business-solutions/case-studies/ibm-strengthens- focus-on-professional-project-management)

Questions 1 – 10 marks

Referring to the extract, the company reorganised to include project management in its operations. With this in mind, justify why companies have an increased interest in project management in recent times. (10 Marks)

Question 2 – 8 marks

Over time, the IBM PMCOE has driven the transformation and integration of project management into the fabric of the organization”. Evident from this assertion is that this company has and continues to align projects to its strategy. (8 marks)

  • Discuss (in a paragraph) the importance of aligning projects to strategy (4 marks)
  • Justify with real life examples why the project manager should understand the strategic position of the firm. (4 marks)

Question 3 – 10 Marks

You have been appointed the project manager at IBM, a company operating in a fast paced IT market. You wish to emphasise to the company bosses the need establish the sound project priority system, and highlight some of the techniques you would employ in selecting projects fairly. Write a discussion of not more than one page in account of these two aspects. (10 Marks)

SECTION B – 92 marks

Question 4 – 47 marks

The Zuma Trade Company has set up a weighted scoring matrix for evaluation of potential projects. Below are five projects under consideration. (47 marks)

Strong Sponsor Supports business strategy Urgency 10% of sales from new products Competition Fill market gap Weighted total
2.0 5.0 4.0 3.0 1.0 3.0
Project A 5 0 9 2 2 5
Project B 1 0 3 5 2 7
Project C 8 3 6 6 2 8
Project D 9 10 1 6 5 0
Project E 0 1 3 8 10 10
  1. Using the scoring matrix above, which project would you rate highest? (21 Marks)
  2. If the weight for “Strong Sponsor” is changed from 2.0 to 5.0, will the project selection change? What are the three highest weighted project scores with this new weight? (23 marks)
  3. Why is it important that the weights mirror critical strategic factors? (3 marks)

QUESTION 5 – 45 Marks

You work for the Mthembu company, which expects to earn at least 18 percent on its investments. You have to choose between two similar projects. Below is the cash flow information for each project.

  • Which of the two projects would you fund if the decision is based only on financial information in terms of NPV? Why? (20 marks)
  • Which of the two projects would you fund if the decision is based only on financial information in terms of NPV given that inflation rate is estimated to be at 7% in each of the next seven years? (25 marks)
Day Care Project Gear Store Project
Year Inflow Outflow Net flow Year Inflow Outflow Net flow
Yr0 0 300000 Yr0 100000 500000
Yr1 25000 100000 Yr1 250000 50000
Yr2 175000 15000 Yr2 230000 0
Yr3 230000 0 Yr3 185000 0
Yr4 200000 0 Yr4 200000 25000
Yr5 195000 25000 Yr5 165000 0
Yr6 150000 5000 Yr6 100000 0
Yr7 180000 35000 Yr7 105000 15000