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Project performance management is an ongoing review of the efficiency and importance of a given project. This important concept is used throughout the business and professional world as a means of understanding and improving company, department, and personnel performance. There are many ways to conduct these reviews, most geared toward analyzing practices and data in order to improve procedure.
There are many factors that determine whether a project is a success, varying based on the initial goals of the project. If a primary goal is to increase office efficiency by 20%, project performance management will involve looking at the before-and-after data, taking into account whether the strategy for this project was appropriate, and how much the efficiency drive cost versus how much profit or improvement it generated. A primary financial goal will be examined largely for the cost versus profits ratio, although it also may take into account how efficiently and wisely the budget was spent in pursuit of the goal.
Project performance management can also be used to assess the performance of a worker or team of workers on a given project. This is typically done through interviews, peer review, or anonymous questionnaires. A project may be dragged down or failing due to poor communication, unequal workloads, or failure to cooperate among workers. Managing project performance can help determine which, if any of these factors are inhibiting progress and may be able to devise a solution to get a project back on track.
A company or business may choose to hire an outside professional to conduct project performance management, or may use the head of a department or project to gather this type of data. An outside performance manager allows a more objective look at performance, without the difficulty of personal relationships with employees or hopes to advance within the company being examined. On the other hand, an internal performance manager may have a more thorough understanding of the business and its daily behavior. This insider knowledge may allow an internal reviewer to suggest solutions and improvements that fit the personality of the company, rather than a less-specific ideal business model.
In some cases, employees may find project performance management to be invasive, unfairly conducted, and a nuisance. It is important to have real proof that careful performance management benefits everyone at the company, not just the bottom profit line. If employees can personally experience the benefits of filling out questionnaires and enduring difficult interviews about their work, they may be more willing to invest time into project performance management sessions.