Case Study of Loose Budgetary Control in ISD Projects This paper investigates the tightness of budgetary control over projects in a large systems development multinational. This represents a case of extreme ISD failure en mass, where all but 2 of the 22 projects in a business unit went over budget, causing senior executives to refocus their strategic priorities and cancel all current and potential projects that followed. This study focuses specifically on the two best performing and worst performing of these projects.
Despite the fact that overspending is such a concern, little research has focused specifically on how budgeting or other general management accounting techniques are being used in ISD. An analysis of the relevant ISD literature shows that blame is attributed to the developers, managers or customers; the development method or process was flawed, inappropriate or obsolete, the team were not managed, directed and monitored sufficiently, or requirements were poorly elicited because the customers did not know their own business. Rarely if ever is the budget target itself ever questioned.
Studies that highlight these disastrous overruns provide little or no information on how the budget was set, how it was communicated, whether it was attainable, how adherence to the budget was monitored and controlled, or how it was integrated into the performance evaluation and reward functions of the project or organisation. In particular, attention has not focused on the tightness of budgetary control over ISD projects, which is somewhat surprising given the prevalence of unacceptable budgetary performance throughout the field..
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Background of the company: Business of the company, key milestones achieved sinceincorporation, Business Segments and Product Profile, Capacities and Production facilities,Technical Collaborations, Marketing , Group companies.
Promoters & top management: (a) have the promoters/senior executives ever defaulted in the past either in this company or in any of the group companies and the reasons for the same(b)market reputation (c) non-compliance of any regulatory guidelines, Management achievement sand skills (project management skills/ market share/ shareholder value/ strong marketing and production skills/operational efficiencies / decision making skills/ challenges faced and their ability to overcome them etc..
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Sapers & Wallack handled group benefits for a company with 1,000 employees and was asked to help solve a problem that was evidencing itself among their 12 officers, 24 senior executives and the 10 outside board members. It seemed that this group did not fully understand nor appreciate the supplemental benefits they were eligible for, or how to best incorporate decisions on these programs into their personal planning.
Human resources had been fielding many questions from executives about best practices to utilize the plans. However, HR did not think they were qualified nor in any fiduciary position to strategically advise on these types of personal decisions. Click here to read more…
Brand Relationships that Drive Television Viewership
Background: The NBA is among the world’s most respected professional sports leagues. However, after experiencing several consecutive years of declining network television ratings and some high profile negative publicity surrounding certain NBA players, senior executives at the NBA had become concerned about the impact these would have on upcoming television contract negotiations. In fact, the current contracts would expire in just over a year and League executives worried that its relationships with viewers and fans might be slipping.
The Solution: The first order of business was to conduct a thorough review of all NBA broadcast data, programs and strategies currently in place to gain a fact-based understanding of their current situation and how they had arrived there. Next brand relationship interviews with nearly a thousand television sports viewers were completed to identify strategies and tactics that would build the League’s image and broadcast viewership. Click here to read more…
During a downturn economy, the IT department is often among the first to be hit with senior executives’ cost-cutting initiatives. Yet in some instances, IT investments deliver more value to a company’s top and bottom lines—by creating new efficiencies and increasing revenues—than any savings gained from traditional IT cost-cutting. Discover the other reasons why your IT spending can actually save money in the long run. Read More…
Business Challenge: As KKE entered its 40th year of business, it faced new challenges to sustaining and expanding its growth into the future. One challenge included identifying and developing the next team of senior executives to run the company. Another challenge was the increasing need to supplement their traditional success in continuing and expanding relationships with the less certain route of responding to requests for proposals. Read more in KKE Architects
Challenge: NJBankers senior executives re-evaluated the agency’s communication process. NJBankers Director of Communications Tim Doherty said traditional mailings no longer made sense. “Our postal costs were rising, even though the number of (member) banks in New Jersey was decreasing.” Studies show when documents are manually prepared, printed and mailed, they can cost more than $1.20 (USD) each. In an effort to reduce printing, paper, postage and labor costs, the association switched to fax distribution. Click here to read more…
“We now have the ability to leverage roadmapping best practices across the entire enterprise so that we can quickly change course to match changes in market conditions. Sopheon’s Vision Strategist™gives us confidence that we can produce new products that are aligned with our long-term business objectives.”– Bob Rasmussen, Director, Strategic Technology Planning, Honeywell
The Business Challenge: Like many global corporations, Honeywell had grown into a diverse enterprise comprised of departments and business units. The decentralized make-up of the company had given rise to siloing that impeded cross-organizational communication and collaboration. When it came to product and technology planning, each business unit had its own road maps and the information was not easily shared. In addition, there was no common structure for the road mapping process.
Because of these factors, it was often difficult for senior executives and other decision makers to identify project redundancies or determine if proposed products were aligned with customer needs and the company’s growth strategies. Honeywell concluded that it needed a way to bring together and raise the visibility of market trends, economic conditions, competitor moves, internal resources and other things that might impact the company’s product development strategies and decisions. This would include leveraging existing road maps throughout the organization, using them to chart a clear path forward for the company’s innovation efforts. Click here to read more…
Challenges: As the company’s concept caught on with doctors and patients, MDVIP began planning an expansion to meet the growing demand. Although the firm generated sufficient cash flow to finance its growth, the founders thought that an outside investor could help accelerate national expansion and provide strategic assistance. They believed that attracting capital would raise MDVIP’s profile not only in the industry, but also among investors.
Solutions: In 2004, Summit Partners invested $6 million in MDVIP and joined the company’s board. Working in partnership with the MDVIP team, Summit provided strategic guidance on a range of issues, including establishing, expanding and managing the company’s sales organization, recruiting senior executives and building an independent board. In addition, Summit offered counsel on upgrading the company’s financial reporting systems and on preparing for an eventual IPO or strategic sale…
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Senior executives at Scandinavian Airlines (SAS) have implemented a new data warehouse based on Microsoft and Intel technology, replacing the aging IBM DB2 mainframe solution that had been supporting business analysts.
Business Needs: To operate effectively, Scandinavian Airlines (SAS) manages large volumes of operational and customer data. Historically, an IBM DB2 information management solution supported all data warehousing, but this became expensive and difficult to manage and could no longer provide timely access to data. As a result, the company wanted a new information management environment that could:…
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