New Zealand project failure highlights importance of PMP® recertification

Monday, June 24th, 2013 By Jack Nevison

When projects fail, the resulting aftermath can be costly.

One notable project failure occurred in the New Zealand school system. According to a blog post on "Why Projects Fail," the school system attempted to use the Novopay program to streamline payment to the 110,000 teachers, administrators and staff that work for them. Originally scheduled to be finished in 2010, the new payment program was not initiated until 2012, due to delays.

However, as soon as the system went online, numerous problems were reported, according to the post. Payment to employees was inconsistent and often incorrect, with some reporting receiving no payment at all. Soon, the press began referring to the incident as "the Novopay debacle."

"[A]t one point affected staff had reported more than 18,000 payroll errors and the operational staff supporting the system appear to have been overwhelmed by the amount of manual intervention needed to correct those errors," the post wrote.

An analysis later found more than 500 defects in the Novopay rollout, many of which were attributed to errors in the original project requirements and the failure on the part of quality assurance testers to identify them.

Every major project failure reinforces the necessity of well-trained project managers to keep projects running smoothly. In order to perform at their best, managers should make sure that they achieve PMP® certification and renew it every three years. 

New Leaf's QPM™ game series allow candidates to complete portable exercises that test their creativity and critical thinking skills. In addition, users can earn PDU credits through the games for PMP® recertification.

To avoid failures, the project team also must function well. New Leaf's two-day program "Complex Problems, Difficult Decisions, and Innovative Ideas" focuses on how teams can improve their joint problem solving, decision making, and idea generation.

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