Project managers to the rescue
Could project management methods have saved this Australian ambulance dispatch system?
The author analyzes an AU$38.7 million communications system project for a Melbourne, Australia-based ambulance service, a project that was completed on-time despite the service's overly aggressive delivery schedule but exceeded the budget by AU$6.7 million. The author explains that the overrun was caused by "a lack of adequate project management methods." More significantly, the service's employees were never properly trained in using the system. Worse yet, because of the service's aggressive schedule, the project team did not have time to appropriately field-test the system. Because of this schedule, when the project team did discover problems during preliminary testing, team members were directed to abandon all testing. The author outlines five activities which could have ensured that the system was delivered on budget and ready for use and that the staff was properly trained to use it.