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Client Expectations.pptx

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What makes a great project?
We performed a survey among senior project managers and project
executives in typical project-...

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Project
Management
Survey
Results
(All 9 priorities)
NOTE: The initial survey was open ended asking project executives for...

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Project
Management
Survey
Results
(All 9 priorities)
What makes a great project?
© ReAdapt, Inc.
What makes a great projec...

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Client Expectations.pptx

  1. 1. What makes a great project? We performed a survey among senior project managers and project executives in typical project-based businesses across several industries. Relentless focus on client expectations This is the 4th of 9 priorities
  2. 2. Project Management Survey Results (All 9 priorities) NOTE: The initial survey was open ended asking project executives for quotes describing their single most important success criterion. The second survey, including a much wider audience, asked: What Makes a Great Project? Please rate these quotes based on how close they represent your opinion. (Answer options: a) #1 priority, b) A top three priority, c) Important or d) Not important.) What makes a great project? © ReAdapt, Inc. 1. Experienced project managers and great teams 2. “We avoid surprises because we do front-end planning...” 3. “We apply best practice based on lean principles...” 4. Relentless focus on client’s expectations 5. Agile collaboration using digital tools 6. "We understand the technology and manage risks…” 7. “Procedures and hands-on management reduce incidents...” 8. “We are great at solving problems…” 9. “We standardize on everything we can…” What makes a great project? This is the 4th of 9 presentations.
  3. 3. Project Management Survey Results (All 9 priorities) What makes a great project? © ReAdapt, Inc. What makes a great project? Mapping the priorities Experienced project managers and great teams “We avoid surprises because we do front-end planning…” “We apply best practice based on lean principles...” Relentless focus on client’s expectations Agile collaboration using digital tools "We understand the technology and manage risks...” “Procedures and hands-on management reduce incidents...” “We are great at solving problems...” “We standardize on everything we can...”
  4. 4. What makes a great project? As a starter: Ensure effective channels of information:  Some companies rely on the project manager to handle all client communication, but those who are more successful say they have a comprehensive approach to ensure that client expectations are understood and fully met. Here is one such example: • An Executive is the Project Sponsor overseeing the client relationship ensuring people are working well together, communicating effectively • A Key Account Manager obtains lessons learned and follows up on improvement actions between the parties as well as applying those to future projects • The Project Manager has specific responsibilities focused on aligning with the client representative to provide early and reliable information • Each team member works with their counterpart in the client’s organization and keep an open line of communication in order to continuously clarify expectations “There is no way we would leave something as important as ‘client expectations’ to chance. Our ‘client relationships’ are the most important means to ensure repeat business and growth…” “There is no reason that an unavoidable problem should lead to unmet expectations and loss of trust. If it is prewarned, responded to and resolved – it should be a ‘win-win’…” “Adjusting expectations ahead of time is much better than hoping things will somehow work out…” “It is all about openly sharing early information about risks and opportunities..” © ReAdapt, Inc. “We have a comprehensive approach to ensure that client expectations are met..” Project Sponsor Project Manager Project Team Leads Key Account Manager Client Executive Client Business Manager Client Representative Client Functional Leads
  5. 5. What makes a great project? What are the expectations? Here is what responders described as “client expectations”: “Clear end-goals carefully planned out and then executed following a predictable and transparent process.” “A purpose described by financial and ESG goals, measured and addressed at each stage. A rapid feedback loop immediately adjusting performance.” “A plan based on optimal economics and functionality, implemented by a visible leadership team, delivered by an aligned project team and supply chain. Addressing uncertainty and mitigating risks. There will be problems, but we expect you to address them immediately and solve them with speed.” “A detailed plan enabling the project to perform with agility, realigning processes and interfaces at each stage, thereby maximizing efficiency.” “Besides nobody getting hurt and staying on schedule, we had one expectation which was to learn as much as possible. Perhaps selfish but working in a great project can further your career.” “We wanted to make sure that we also met the expectations of the community we worked in – everyone had goals and metrics related to that.” Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) Financial objectives Strategic goals
  6. 6. What makes a great project? Why is this a top priority?  This was the 4th most widely held criteria for making a great project.  1/3 had it included among top 3 priorities. Responders had a surprising angle on what client expectations really means for a project. So, let’s hear what they said: “Product Businesses are more transactional, strive to describe customer expectations and then focuses on exceeding them… … Service Providers listen carefully to their clients so they can pick up the undescribed expectations as well... Project Businesses have both of those and more…much more…often described as the project experience”. An experience shared by all. © ReAdapt, Inc. “The Project Experience...” Focus on Client’s Project Expectations Defining, Monitoring and Adapting to Expectations The Project Experience
  7. 7. “…withholding information is a root cause for missed expectations..” What needs to improve: Detached Teams “Projects are complex and ambiguous. A successful outcome takes a close client-contractor relationship. A detached team with poor leadership never meets the expectations.” Misalignment “Some project expectations are not well defined, particularly in the beginning, and require the team to quickly readapt as it develops. A misaligned team will most often fail at this.” Interfaces “Projects have many parallel interdependent activities. Ignoring interfaces is a very common lesson learned in failed projects.” “For complex problems, we try to find a solution that is finite, simple, but unfortunately, wrong.” Win-Lose Attitude “If your goal is to reduce the profit margin of your suppliers, you're lost. This does not however stop you from reducing project cost.” Information Sharing “The contracting environment often drives team members to withhold information – a root cause for not meeting expectations” “Not sharing critical information with your client is like assuming we are fools – proactive sharing is the desired project culture” “We are happy you achieved this milestone, but you should have told us it was risky. We don’t like to base our business on ‘luck’…” What makes a great project? “..a detached team will never meet expectations…” © ReAdapt, Inc.
  8. 8. © ReAdapt, Inc. What makes a great project? “…uncertainty is a project reality..” “..clarity enables expectations to be met…” Contract Value Uncertainty Fixed Price Fixed & Rates Alliance Rates 1. Fixed Price – project phases with less uncertainty 2. Rates – project phases with a lot of uncertainty 3. Fixed & rates – large contracts with less uncertainty 4. Alliance – large contracts with a lot of uncertainty “A clear and realistic scope of work enables expectations to be met.” “Lack of clarity and uncontrollable risks will lead to missed expectations.” How to align expectations:  Most owners responded that they prefer fixed price contracts with strict contractual remedies. They might soften their approach by accepting reasonable variation orders. However, this often leads to missed expectations. Rate contracts are common, but many owners feel those do not drive efficiency. Since projects inherently include some level of uncertainty, responders used contract compensation formats that addressed this reality: “Delegating risks that cannot be controlled is a fool's game” “We usually find an appropriate format for work that has a lot of uncertainties so we can keep the rest of it simple and drive cost efficiency” “…compensation formats that are fair and realistic, considering the uncertainties in each particular project phase, lead to the best results” “..a fair and realistic compensation format leads to best results…”
  9. 9. What makes a great project? © ReAdapt, Inc. An example of what works well “A typical ‘client – server’ relationship is not sufficient for a complex project. A deeper relationship, based on shared expectations is what we are looking for. “ “An alliance approach influences how project employees are engaged internally and how they work in partnership with the contractors and suppliers externally. … …It is cultural, it is something you can only experience.” In order to make the project economically viable, an alliance was formed including the owner, several contractors and suppliers to plan and execute the project together. Focused on a shared goal, the group of companies decided to sidestep the traditional “client – server” relationship in its quest to transform it into a great project. Each participating company’s profit was aligned with the project`s financial results. For team members, the experience of working in a united team with the freedom to challenge conventional thinking unlocked untouched possibilities for innovation and collaboration. Read further about how this approach became such a success: WHAT YOU WANT WHAT THEY WANT WIN WIN A cultural shift The Alliance approach
  10. 10. An Example of what works The Client established an alliance with its Subcontractors • “The synergy of companies working together in a well-organized alliance with shared goals created an exceptional project culture”. • “Shared risks and rewards provided a financial opportunity for all”. • “The project revealed inherent personal abilities and a natural desire for teamwork and to push the project to surpass previous standards.” • “An immediate benefit was the savings in the boundaries between companies’ scope of work: - Less client personnel overseeing contractors - Avoided duplication of effort - Matched task with capability, shared or swapped work scopes - Less documentation, expediting and inspection - Challenged additional cost that did not add value anywhere - Set stretched targets “We shared risks & rewards and unlocked inherent personal abilities for co- operation” “We set stretched targets” © ReAdapt, Inc.
  11. 11. “Admit you don’t have all the answers and agree to trust the better judgement and experience of others” “New members underwent a comprehensive ‘induction’ including project goals, financial targets and training in ‘open communication’” “Problems occurred, but the difference was the way people responded” “We could free our minds of commercial conflicts and concentrate instead on making major decisions together for the project’s benefit” “Setting stretched targets became a primary mechanism for success. We therefore almost always achieved better results than usual.” An example of what works How to achieve this well proven best practice? Financial alignment: • Fixed overhead and profit with manhours reimbursed at cost, some lump sum plus schedule of rates • Transparent budgets for all parties, individual provisions for known unknowns, shared 10% contingency. “….the shift to a unified team…” “…stretched targets became a primary mechanism for success” Responders familiar with the Alliance approach advice that it is most meaningful for a client and a group of contractors with many interdependencies. An Alliance may also be more suitable during certain phases of a project. All responders said that an alliance requires appropriate leadership experience and style. © ReAdapt, Inc.
  12. 12. “…if certain contractors are crucial to a successful outcome - establish an alliance..” © ReAdapt, Inc. If an Alliance is an option, make sure it is cohesive! • during certain project phases e.g. front-end • for specific scope of work; e.g. specific sub systems • to pursue certain options or innovations • for specific challenges e.g. system integration  An Alliance must, however, be cohesive with contract terms; work processes; information flow; roles; risk exposure etc... “…an alliance can get you that ‘great project experience’ we all are looking for…” “…If you agree to ‘share’ and the contract terms conflict that, the alliance benefits will probably not materialize...” “…an alliance can get you that ‘great project experience’ we all are looking for…” “..we successfully used an alliance format during the planning phase, then moved to a fixed-price-format after many of the uncertainties had been eliminated…”  If the contractors and suppliers are crucial to a successful outcome you may consider an Alliance:
  13. 13. Leadership Style  Information flows freely with broad employee engagement  An influencer with goal-oriented and supportive leadership style will be fitting  Clarity in mission, objectives and strategy has shown to beat ambiguity; a tenacious problem for any project.  Focus on a clear input if you want a successful output  Clear up confusions with healthy dialogues before critical decisions are made
  14. 14. Next Priorities © ReAdapt, Inc.

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