Stretching the Dollar: The Value of Project Management

By James Williams in Project Management on October 13th, 2014

As marketing executives clamor to find new ways to engage consumers, marketing budgets are now larger than ever. Paid media is expected to exceed over half a trillion dollars worldwide in 2014, a growth rate more than double the previous year, according to eMarketer. However, with increased budgets come increased expectations and marketing executives are now looking for their return on these massive budgets—down to the dollar.

Asian woman and chalk money tree drawing on blackboard.

Stretching the dollar is just as important now as it’s ever been and more companies are using project management to do just that. A study conducted by PricewaterhouseCoopers in 2012 found that 97% of organizations believe “project management is critical to business performance and organizational success.” The proof is in the pudding- global executives cited project management as the core competency that made it possible to remain competitive during the recession and nearly 60% of senior executives cite building a strong project management discipline amongst their top-three priorities in the coming years, according to the Economist Intelligence Unit and McKinsey & Co., respectively.

However, despite this fact, insufficient involvement from senior executives is cited as the leading reason why 33% of all projects fail.

What gives?

The fundamental understanding of the value of project management and the way in which it may truly benefit the organization may be the cause. While 77% of all high performing companies understand the value of project management, only 40% of low-performing companies share that same understanding. If your organization has not implemented project management or engaged an agency with an integrated project management function, you may be a member of that low-performing 60%. Communicating the benefits of project management and the way in which it supports the organization and the clients it services is instrumental in gaining buy-in from leadership.

For clients looking to get the most out of their marketing budgets, selecting an organization with project management as a core competency is a must. Consumers’ attention is at a premium in this new, hyperactive marketing world and every dollar counts. The foundation of project management lies in the understanding and successful implementation of process. In the identification, analysis and management of risk, project managers are able to intercept risks that have the potential to negatively impact process and leverage positive risks that serve as opportunities for the project—and the customer. Time is money and any time that is wasted completing a project is literally money down the drain. Project managers are charged with being good stewards of the company’s resources, including the management of project budgets with a keen eye on preventing scope creep—a good practice for marketing executives looking to maximize their dollar and agencies looking to stay within budget.

Successful project management ensures an organization is able to effectively and efficiently manage its resources and proactively manage risk. Organizations that understand this and align these core competencies with their overarching strategic initiatives are in the position to provide the return on investment that marketers are demanding.

Marketers looking to experience the benefits of project management and get the most out of their marketing budgets shouldn’t hesitate to inquire of agencies looking to gain their business about their project management structure and integration. Every dollar counts and a poorly executed campaign could mean all the difference to your bottom line.

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