Saturday, March 01, 2014

The death of project management?

Let's take a look at some recent debacles:

1.  The failure of the Lockheed-Martin designed speed skating suits at the Sochi Olympics.

2.  The debacle of the "Health Insurance Deform Act" portal at the federal level.

3.  The implosion, apparently, of up to 35 state exchanges for the Health Insurance Deform Act.

What do all of these have in common?  All admitted that they did not do significant testing prior to release, and as a result, all self-destructed.  In similar news, I've noted before that many of the "compact fluorescent" light bulbs I've bought--really anything but those producing about 500 to 800 lumens with the "corkscrew" configuration--are great candidates for getting a full refund because they simply don't last anywhere near the warranty period.  In other words, they didn't do reliability testing prior to release--and it would seem that the Department of Energy never called them on it, either.

(no surprise, really; the DOE has never, ever helped to develop an energy source that can compete in markets without subsidies.  It's not like they're interested in affordable energy or anything, after all)

Now it's particularly telling that these omissions were made, because the standard tools for risk management--FMEA, accelerated reliability testing, and the like--were by and large invented and promoted by none less than....the government.  And yet government officials allowed these programs to go live.

In other words, in government circles, the basics of program management are being ignored because the political realities loom greater for government officials than the impact on citizens.  Yes, be very, very afraid of the consequences, which shall be dire.

1 comment:

Mark said...