No measurement leads to project management failure

One firm's attempt to create a new integrated ordering system ended up a project management failure, due to a lack of understanding of the underlying systems.

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This is the second in a series of columns by Faisal Hoque, CEO of the BTM Institute. In this column, Hoque discusses a project management failure as a result of an ERP implementation that created "a perfect storm of errors and poor management assumptions."

In 2004, Symantec Inc., a powerhouse in the security software market, merged with Veritas, a leader in enterprise storage management software. The $13.5 billion deal -- the largest in the IT industry to date -- promised to unify data security with data storage, creating a series of holistic products that ensured the confidentiality, integrity and availability of data critical to business operations. Numerous technical and operational challenges confronted the two companies as they came together, but perhaps none greater than unifying their product ordering systems.

Veritas grew up as an enterprise-oriented company, where Symantec was borne out of the consumer market. Their respective pedigrees meant that their ordering and product processing systems were built with different assumptions and expectations. Given that both companies were heavily dependent upon third-party resellers and distributors for sales, the ordering system was critical to ensuring the success of the merger. Symantec dubbed the new ERP implementation "Project Oasis." It consulted hundreds of partners in designing and implementing the system, and created a project management team led directly by the CIO.

Read the rest of this article here: "No Measurement Means No Management."
 

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This was first published in April 2012

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