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“What a waste of money”
IT Project Failure and how to avoid it
This white paper examines the reasons why IT projects fail. The results of several studies are presented, and the trends for failure rates
examined. A number of reasons for project failure are considered, and recommendations are made as to how project failure may be
It’s almost an unwritten rule that IT projects fail - or at least a significant number of them do! IT Projects do not need to fail,
but it seems to have become an acceptable norm. The reasons why they fail have not changed much over the past 15 years,
and neither have the rates of failure. Although there have been many attempts to propose simple guidelines, which, it has
been argued, can change IT project success rates significantly, projects continue to fail.
In the following sections we will consider what is meant by project failure, and then look at the results of studies that provide
figures for IT project failure rates. We will examine the reasons why they fail, and consider ways to avoid project failure.