London ambulance system academic essay assignment -


Published on

Published in: Technology, Business
  • Be the first to comment

  • Be the first to like this

No Downloads
Total views
On SlideShare
From Embeds
Number of Embeds
Embeds 0
No embeds

No notes for slide

London ambulance system academic essay assignment -

  1. 1. GET YOUR WORK DONE BY UNIVERSITY NAME rs pe London Ambulance Service [Type the document subtitle] Pa Your Name 9/28/2009 de rapGTo GET YOUR WORK DONE BY
  2. 2. GET YOUR WORK DONE BY This paper is about the failure of a well known case of London Ambulance Service. It is divided into two parts. The first part of the paper characterizes the type of LASCAD project failure in light of the IT projects failure taxonomies. While the rs second part, attempts to explore the deficiencies related to the nine areas of PMBOK and how they contributed to the project failure. pe The high failure rate for the IT projects is a world-wide phenomenon. Reasons for failure have been attributed to technological difficulties, organizational and functional problems, managerial issues, and many other reasons i.e. they could be process- related, people-related or technical problems. One of the most extensive studies that Pa were deployed to study the root causes for IT project failure was conducted by group of researches. Some software can be so large that thorough testing can be almost impossible and so bugs in the software can go unnoticed (Panchamb, 1997). It was de conducted in three different settings in Hong Kong, Finland and United States. The experts identified a list of 53 IT project risk factors initially. The most common factors are: ra  Senior Management is not committed  Project team lacks required skills and knowledge  Incorrect methodology of project managementpG  Inappropriate use of project management skills  Introduction of new technology  Changing scope and objectives To Not managing change properly Traditionally, a project should deliver agreed upon functionality on time and within estimated budget according to Keider (1974) and Saleh (2005). A study conducted by Standish Group International in 1995, which included several thousands of IT project revealed that only 16% of those projects were finished on time, and within the estimated budget; 32% were terminated before they were completed, while the remaining 52% involved costs higher than the original estimates and were completed behind their schedule (Paul Beynon-Davies, 1999). GET YOUR WORK DONE BY
  3. 3. GET YOUR WORK DONE BY The case on hand is about the London Ambulance Service (LAS) who implemented a computer-assisted dispatch system (LASCAD) to replace its manual dispatch systems to improve its emergency response times. The system was built using a rule-based approach in dealings with a geographical information system (GIS). It was built by a rs small software house named as Systems Options using their own GIS software running under Microsoft Windows (CAD Failure LAS, 1992). pe It was developed by a small software house called Systems Options at a cost of £937,463. The scope of the project included receiving calls, allocating ambulances on the basis of available resources and monitoring the status of the requests. Some nine Pa days after implementation, the system recorded erroneous vehicle information caused in part by crew pressing the wrong button. Incorrect vehicle allocations resulted. Patients became frustrated with the delays and started making calls which were already stored in the system. With increasing call volume and accumulating messages de awaiting action, the LASCAD was deluged and eventually came to an end. The media which reported that 20 to 30 may have died as a result of the delay in ambulances arrival eventually led to the resignation of LAS chief executive. LASCAD was retired and the original manual system was reinstated. It took another four years before a new ra LASCAD system was implemented.pG After reading the case of LASCAD, it revealed several factors that contributed to the project failure. It is evident that the project failure was a mixture of people-related, process related and technical problems. People-related because of inexperience developer, process-related because of aggressive projects schedule and someTo technical problems were also evident from the research. GET YOUR WORK DONE BY
  4. 4. GET YOUR WORK DONE BY Deficiencies related PMBOK Areas Project Integration Management It ensures that the project is properly planned, executed, and controlled, including the rs exercise of formal project change control. As the term implies, every activity must be coordinated or integrated with every other one in order to achieve the desired project outcomes (John M.Nicholas, 2006). pe The planning team of the project included Support Services Director, Project Manager, contractor and the Services Manager. The planning process included the several areas of LAS but they didn’t consider the ambulance crew. This wasn’t a wise Pa step because; the design of the system would directly affect them in any case. This also shows that integration of the activities was not up to the mark. The deadlines de were not met since the initiation which shows a lack of control over the activities of the project. ra Project Scope Management Changes to project scope are often the factors that “kill” a project. It includespG authorizing the job, developing a scope statement that will define the boundaries of the project, subdividing the work into manageable components with deliverables, verifying that the amount of work planned has been achieved, and specifying scope change control procedures (John M.Nicholas, 2006).To The scope of the project included receiving calls, allocating ambulances on the basis of available resources and monitoring the status of the requests. The system also needed to be integrated with a number of other systems. The necessities for the integration of these systems with the CAD software, did not specify, the appropriate detail, for the accomplishment of this task. The team defined the scope by investigating the systems that were employed by smaller ambulance GET YOUR WORK DONE BY
  5. 5. GET YOUR WORK DONE BY services. It is hard to understand why they did not investigate the ambulance services of other large cities. Moreover, there were no formal change control procedures and changes were made without any formal documentation. Project Time Management Time management implies personal efforts to manage one’s time. For projects, it rs refers to developing a schedule that can be met, then controlling work to ensure that this happens. It is also referred as scheduling (John M.Nicholas, 2006). pe Since from the beginning, the projects schedule was too aggressive. Warnings by Anderson Consulting in late 1990 that the project needed a longer timescales were completely ignored. Pa The project began with the process of contracting suppliers. The respondents were supposed to send a copy of System Requirements Specification (SRS) with an aggressive and non-negotiable deadline. The contract was awarded to System de Options. After that, Systems Options (SO) initiated its working on a comprehensive System ra Design Specification It took two months to complete the design specification. And only six months were allocated for the implementation of the CAD software. As a result, the project deadlines were not met. An official announcement was also madepG by the project team and it was decided that the project will be implemented in phases. Keeping in mind the breadth of the LAS, this schedule was too aggressive.To Project Cost Management Cost management involves the cost resources, including people, equipments, materials, and such things as travel and other support details. After this done, costs are budgeted and tracked to keep the project within that budget. The appropriate cost estimates are very crucial factor in the success of any project. T he first step was to select a supplier. The contract was awarded to System Options at a GET YOUR WORK DONE BY
  6. 6. GET YOUR WORK DONE BY cost of £937,463. The System Options bid was lowest and they were awarded with the contract without any further investigation. Project Quality Management rs Quality management included both quality assurance (planning to meet quality requirements) and quality control (steps taken to monitor results to see if they conform to requirements). pe One of the common causes of a project failure is that quality is compromised or sacrificed so that a tight deadline can be met. It is not very helpful to complete a goes with story of LAS. Pa project on time, only to discover that the thing delivered won’t work properly. Same IT projects like LASCAD, demands the quality which depends on the supplier’s de experience and skills. Keeping in mind, the scope of the project, it should be awarded to a large and more experienced supplier. But the contract was awarded to System Options that lacked both the experience and the resources. ra For effective quality assurance, there must be a team which is not only independent but also have the power to change anything to meet the quality standards. ButpG unfortunately, System Options assigned only assigned one part time personnel who was responsible for the entire quality standards.To Project Human Resource Management Managing human resources is often overlooked in projects. It involves identifying the people needed to do the job, defining their roles, responsibilities, and reporting relationships, acquiring those people, and then managing them as the project is executed. PMBOK mentions that these skills are necessary, but does not attempt to document them. Given that these are the most important skills that a project manager must have, PMBOK is deficient in omitting them (John M.Nicholas, 2006). GET YOUR WORK DONE BY
  7. 7. GET YOUR WORK DONE BY As already explained, the contractor selected for the project was small software house without any past experience in developing these kinds of systems. Furthermore, there was only one person responsible for the quality assurance and more importantly he was not independent of the developing team. rs As a result, System options delayed the delivery of softwares on continual basis, and whatever they deliver was not without any defects. pe The users of the system were not properly trained. Even after the LASCAD had been implemented, users were unable to use the system properly and committed mistakes that ultimately led to its crash. This shows the people selected for the job were not Pa adequate and not much experienced for the handling of the job at hand. Project Communications Management de It involves planning, executing, and controlling the acquisition and spreading of all information relevant to the needs of all project stakeholders. This information would include project status, activities, actions, that may affect other stakeholders or the ra project.pG As a first mistake, the project team excluded the ambulance crew, one of the stakeholders of the project in the planning process. They should be included since they are the people who would be most affected by the design of the system. The design of the system adopted the operational working system and this kind of systemTo alter the duties of ambulance crew and the staff of call centres.These people were again not taken into confidence before developing this kind of system. The reasons mentioned above explain the fact that information was not properly disseminated to the stakeholders of the project. Project Risk Management GET YOUR WORK DONE BY
  8. 8. GET YOUR WORK DONE BY It is the process of identifying and quantifying and taking action to project risks. It includes maximizing the chances of positive events while minimizing the chances of adverse events to project goals. This is an extremely important aspect of project management that sometimes is overlooked by novice project managers (John M.Nicholas, 2006). rs The project was too risky in the sense that human lives were at stake. Despite this fact, throughout LASCAD development, the emergency backup system was untested. pe Contractor without any prior experience, no quality standards, and no full time team for the project, changes without any formal revision and review process and most Pa importantly inexperience project manger are the some errors which shows the poor risk management for the project. de Project Procurement Management Procurement of necessary goods and services for the project is the logistics aspect of managing a job. It involves deciding what must be procured, issuing requests for bids ra or quotations, selecting vendors, administering contracts, and closing them when the job is finished (John M.Nicholas, 2006).pG Procurement began with the process of contracting suppliers. However, contract was awarded to the lowest bidder without taking into account the capabilities of the bidder. As already explained, System Options was not a correct choice.This explainsTo why their bid was so low than other competitors. This shows that the procurement process was faulty from the beginning. References GET YOUR WORK DONE BY
  9. 9. GET YOUR WORK DONE BY  John M.Nicholas (2006), “Project Management for Business and Technology Principles and Practice”, Chapter 1.  Paul Beynon-Davies (1999), “Human error and information systems failure: the case of the London ambulance service computer-aided dispatch system rs project”, University of Glam organ, Pontypridd CF37 1DL, Mid-Glam organ, Wales, UK. pe  Panchamb (1997), Why Software Systems Fail." Planet Papers. Retrieved at September 25, 2009, Retrieved from:  Pa "CAD Failure LAS” (1992). Retrieved at: Sepetember 26, 2009. Retrieved from: de rapGTo GET YOUR WORK DONE BY