Two trend setters in Project Management: US’ PMI and EU’s PCM Methodologies
There are various project management methodologies that are accepted all over the world and applied by different organizations. PMI (Project Management Institute) Methodology used in the Continental America and all over the world, PRINCE 2 originating from England and PCM (Project Cycle Management) Applications applied in European Union projects are some of the leading and widely used in the global sense. Although their methodologies are different, the common point of all these tools is to reach the target with process groups and management knowledge areas in a certain standard.
Although PMI is the most widely accepted project management methodology in the world, the increase in awareness in the field of “project management” in Turkey started with the implementation of PCM and European Union projects in our country, especially in the early 2000s, and it increased exponentially. In the last ten years, with trainings on PCM methodology, tens of thousands of NGOs, public, private sector and university personnel from Edirne to Hakkari have increased their awareness along with their project management knowledge and capacity. Despite all this capacity increase, when we consider the size of our country, there is still a need for capacity increase and this need can be answered by reducing it to the local level, primarily through our Development Agencies.
So, what makes Project Management so important? In order to answer this question, we need to examine the definition of “project” in detail. Project is the whole of the activities performed by a certain team, at a certain start and end time, in line with determined targets, using resources. At this point, with the help of various tools, Project Management Methodologies enable the project manager and the project team to proactively manage all the problems and risks that may arise in any project development and implementation. The areas covered are:
- Scope Management
- Time management
- Cost Management
- Risk management
- Communication Management
- Quality management
- Integration Management
- Purchasing Management
- Human Resources Management
When these fields of knowledge are written one after the other, there will be countless examples that many of us can give in any project run by a project manager, even in the daily routines of most of us. Project Management achieves its specific and general goals through regular monitoring of the three famous constraints of Project management, Scope, Time and Cost parameters, thanks to these knowledge areas and the tools these offer. This is why more than 60% of the projects implemented in the IT sector, which turned into a global crisis in the 90s, failed due to the inability to carry out these parameters in a methodical way or the wrong project plan and design.
If we consider Turkey’s membership process to the European Union as a project/program, hundreds of projects have been carried out under this program so far, new ones are being carried out, planned and will be carried out. Our duty to achieve the goal of this main project should first of be to adopt Project Management as a philosophy and make it a part of our lives. Only in this way, we can more easily access and benefit more from European Union funds, especially in terms of producing more projects. It would be unfair to transfer this mission only to our institutions that make programming during the European Union membership process. In our country with a population of nearly 80 million, all of our public institutions and organizations, municipalities, universities, large or small NGOs need to be involved and support the process and produce projects with innovative ideas by examining best practices in Europe.
Beyond that, we also need to efficiently track and manage scope management, from small to large projects. Keeping in mind that each project will contribute to the main goal above, we should neither aim to solve all our problems with just one project, nor should we turn to projects that are unsustainable, repeating each other and decreasing in effectiveness with each repetition. In the membership process of nearly 10 years, with the new IPA (Instrument of Pre-Accession Financial Assistance ), we have the chance to further improve our capacity, which has already reached a good point, especially with sector-oriented approaches.
We need to demonstrate care for time management, perhaps more than we do to scope management, and complete the projects within the specified time. Because, especially when we compare with the Balkan countries, our processes are quite slow. Projects from the planning stage to the closing stage can take years. In this process, the needs of the beneficiary institutions and groups may change, and the targets may be advanced.
The above knowledge areas (PMI Project Management Knowledge areas) and management philosophy will contribute in the long term to our development and execution of appropriate, effective, productive, sustainable, effective (PCM Evaluation Criteria) projects.
As a result, we have the PMI Methodology, which emerged under the leadership of organizations in the USA, and the Professional Project Managers, who constitute approximately half a million certified members on one hand, and on the other hand, we have the PCM Methodology, which was formed under its influence and prepared to control all EU Programs and Projects. When we consider their formation, in fact, both are applications that emerged due to the same need and aim to manage better programs and projects. In this context, both methodologies aim to enable institutions and individuals to adopt all project management areas and manage processes in a more disciplined way. For this reason, it is fair to say that these two guidelines emerged, progressed and developed in line with the same goals. We can define PCM as customized according to EU Programs and Projects and say that it helps in the preparation and implementation of EU projects and programs in about 100 countries of the world, and that PMI, with its experience accumulated over 40 years, contributes to better Project Implementation in the World and supports the dissemination of this approach.
We wish everyone successful projects on time, in scope and on budget.