Pulse of the Profession


Pulse of the Profession® is our annual global survey of project, program and portfolio managers charting the major trends in project management.

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Our quarterly report on indicators of importance to the project management community.

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Success in Disruptive Times

Advances in technology are disrupting traditional industries and changing the functional roles of workers. An organization’s future is in the hands of those who bring projects to life.

Our latest Pulse of the Profession® research reinforces that employing proven project management practices leads to greater organizational success. High-performing companies waste 21 times less money than their underperforming counterparts.

An analysis of the research shows that investing in actively engaged executive sponsors, avoiding scope creep and maturing program delivery capabilities are the three leading ways organizations can save money.

The constantly changing environment has led to an evolution from best practices to next practices as organizations try to prepare for the future. This Pulse report provides an early perspective on the trends that are changing the value delivery landscape, how project practitioners are adapting and how organizations are responding.

High-performing organizations, those we call champions, develop the capability to continually adapt, adjust and innovate.

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    2018 Pulse of the Profession Overview

    Pulse of the Profession 2018

    Since 2013, we’ve seen a 27 percent decrease in the amount of money organizations are wasting due to poor project performance. As of this research, 9.9 percent of every dollar invested is wasted,…

In-Depth Topic Reports

Special Features

  • Research Highlights by Industry and Region

    This report provides a comparison of research results between a variety of geographical locations and industries and the global totals.

  • What's Next? Identifying New Ways of Working

    Learn about the five ways that successful organizations are cultivating disruptions in order to evolve their best practices to next practices.

Transforming the High Cost of Low Performance

In 2017, for the first time in the previous five years of Pulse of the Profession® research, project success rates were rising. More projects were meeting original goals and business intent and being completed within budget. There was a 20 percent decline in dollars wasted due to project failures.

What Pulse showed in the past still held true: Projects are more successful when proven practices are implemented. This report added achieving expected benefits to traditional measures of project success.

In-depth Topic Reports

How will you improve business results?

Compared to the 2015 Pulse of the Profession® findings, 2016 results saw more projects failing and significant monetary loss. Organizations wasted US$122 million for every US$1 billion invested due to poor project performance.

We counseled organizations to strengthen the conversation on the benefits of project management and its value as a strategic competency that can reduce risk, cut costs and improve success rates. Throughout the year, we focused on benefits realization: how to gain, deliver and sustain the value that projects deliver.

In-depth Topic Reports

Improve business results

Taking a Pulse

High performance and project management maturity go hand in hand — but many organizations are still in the slow lane. Numbers tell the story.


Capturing the Value of Project Management

All change in an organization happens through projects and programs — by many different names. By focusing on the fundamentals of developing a project management culture, cultivating talent, and defining processes, organizations will capture the value of project management and gain competitive advantage.

In-depth Topic Reports

The High Cost of Low Performance

Only 9 percent of organizations rated themselves as excellent on successfully executing strategic initiatives to deliver business results. Mature practices in project management bridge the gap between strategy formulation and implementation, enabling organizations to both “run” and “change” the business.”

In-depth Topic Reports

The Risks of Undervaluing Project Management

When organizations continuously improve at project and program execution, they drive success. But when executives undervalue the benefit of effective project, program and portfolio management — strategic initiative management — they put real dollars at risk.

In-depth Topic Reports

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    The Essential Role of Communications

    By PMI According to 55 percent of project managers, effective communication to all stakeholders is the most critical success factor in project management. Get the hard numbers behind this soft skill.

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    PMO Frameworks

    By PMI This report enables PMOs to benchmark themselves against the most common PMO frameworks and the key practices of each type. The report compares the methods, services and processes used by the…

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    The Impact of PMOs on Strategy Implementation

    By PMI This research identifies key practices of high-performing PMOs that enable them to realize their potential in contributing value to their organizations and to implement strategy more effectively…


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