The role of project professionals in the digital future
In the fifth in our Chartered series, we turn to look at the challenges and opportunities which technology may bring to the project management profession and set out some principles that professionals will need to arm themselves with insight as to the dynamics which successful digital transformation must address for success.
This paper focuses on the importance of technology and big data, and the advent of AI and how it might impact our profession, work, society and the economy more generally. As a new Chartered profession, we need to address the implications of technology for project management as a whole, and for individual professionals, not only for the benefit of the economy, but also for society itself. “By 2020, it is believed that 40 per cent of incumbent companies will be displaced by digital disruption”.
So what is digital disruption? Digital disruption is a product of adoption, acceptance and, ultimately, the change that technology brings in the way that people interact with each other, brands, products and services. The drivers of change around digital are real, accelerating unabated, and demand respect and attention, which is why we need digital transformation.
There is no doubt that tomorrow’s organisations will be required to move to a state where change and improvement are the only constants, continually striving to keep up with the pace of external change. They will be required to be more agile, value led, customer centric, explorative and efficient to remain robust and relevant. Enabling these shifts will require that project professionals become keen champions of digitally enabled ways of working, and not just about using the tools. Digital transformation touches every aspect of the organisation (or at least should to succeed) and, crucially, requires new cross-functional behaviours of adapting, testing and learning.
Good governance is about how people behave. These behaviours need to be set from the top.
As a project manager, your job is to split the work up into different tasks and ensure others complete their part of the jigsaw puzzle. This entails overcoming a number of hurdles. So what are the most common of these, and how can you get ahead?