003 – The Value of Project Management to Competitiveness: Key Factors from a Holistic and Practical Perspective

Silva, C., Pereira, C., Magano, J.
International Journal of Managing Projects in Business (forthcoming)
Abstract

Purpose

The contribution of project success and the organisation’s efficiency is consensual in the literature. However, the value of project management (PM) brings to the organisation’s effectiveness through the alignment with strategy, contributing to its competitiveness and business success, is yet little explored. This study addresses the literature gap that concerns the relationship between PM and the organisation’s competitiveness, proposing a holistic conceptual model to understand of how PM brings value to the organisation. This work also aims to demonstrate the practical implications of theoretical contributions to the value of PM. For this, a detailed action research (AR) was planned to show how researchers and practitioners could work and collaborate in a real problem and prove the AR approach’s adequacy to the PM field.

Design/methodology/approach

The methodology starts with a systematic literature review (SLR), followed by content analysis to develop a conceptual model of PM’s value. To validate the theoretical constructs and transfer the results to real context, an AR plan is then carried out to support a specific PM problem presented by an automotive industry company.

Findings

The results have theoretical and practical implications. An original conceptual model is developed–the value of PM: Key factors–defending a multidimensional and holistic perspective to understand the PM’s value. A set of key factors was identified, structured, interrelated and exemplified their practical implementation in a single company. In addition to the technical key factors identified in the literature review, the AR plan unveils crucial social aspects to improve PM’s value, such as leadership, strong communication and open processes. This work shows the central role of PM methodologies in integrating and interconnecting the key factors, emphasizing the projects’ strategic level.

Research limitations/implications

The present work was developed in a specific and particular organisational context and industry.

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