I was recently chatting with a former colleague, her company is just going live with a long-term new system project that was originally intended to bring efficiencies, cost savings and make everyone’s lives easier. 3 years later and almost 40% cost overbudget, the system is partially working, and bugs keep popping up, frustration keeps growing, nevertheless the organization is so invested in it, that they don’t have any option other than push through and get this done. Unfortunately, I have seen this movie too many times, according to research from McKinsey, half of all large IT projects—defined as those with initial price tags exceeding $15 million—massively blow their budgets. On average, large IT projects run 45 percent over budget and 7 percent over time, while delivering 56 percent less value than predicted. Software projects run the highest risk of cost and schedule overruns.
Your digital transformation projects do not have to be part of this gloomy statistic. By focusing key high risk areas, you can mitigate most of the risks and have a good chance to have a great digital transformation project implementation:
- Secure key external and internal talent to master technology and project know-how throughout the project.
- Identify and Freeze project requirements as soon as possible and build upon successfully implemented system features.
- Ensure you build alignment and manage expectations by focusing on managing strategy and stakeholders instead of exclusively concentrating on budget and scheduling.
- Build effective teams by aligning their incentives with the overall goals of projects.
- Excelling at core project-management practices, such as Scrum with rigorous quality checks is imperative to spot early deficiencies and avoid costly fixes later in the life of the project.
- Create a change management focus team. Poor change management practices account for most of digital transformation adoption failures. By focusing and addressing the concerns of the teams impacted by the change of the new system, you have more than 50% of the potential risks of system adoption addressed.
Talk to us to learn more on how to successfully implement digital transformation projects.