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The importance of a common project management method in the corporate environment

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Like so many other major companies in the world today, Ericsson runs most of its product development operations as projects. The increasing complexity of telecommunication solutions often requires that many technologies are brought together in one turnkey project, such as telephone switching, mobile radio networks, DECT radio Access and others. Competence centres within Ericsson, spread out over many countries need to work together in‘cross functional’ projects.

While the advantage of the project concept is obvious, carrying out projects in which various Ericsson companies participate, in different countries, can prove to be a very complex undertaking. Many such projects are running simultaneously and often compete for resources and priority with ever increasing time constraints. In order to succeed we need a common methodology for managing projects.

This methodology must provide Ericsson with a shared view on how we allocate scarce (human) resources, the roles that need to be played by all those involved in the project and the supporting line functions, the criteria to be used for decisions to be taken inside the project and in relation to other projects, and many more issues that require a common view. A shared view on project management is also a prerequisite for handling conflicts within an organization in which the project, as a working form, is predominant. Various Ericsson companies and units have achieved different degrees of maturity in their management of projects. This combined experience has produced a methodology called ‘PROPS’ that Ericsson uses today. The widespread use of PROPS has given Ericsson a common terminology and common perspective of projects. This contributes to shorter lead-time, time to market and time to customer. In this article is explained some of the PROPS features and how PROPS is applied.
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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Quality Manager, Ericsson Business Mobile Networks BV, Business & Sciencepark, Institutenweg 25, P.O. Box 645, 7500 AP Enschede, The Netherlands

Publication date: 1997-07-01

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