Monday, 21 September 2009

How to easily achieve a Shop Drawings Production process?


1.                 General Instructions for Architects:

Please find below the routine check list of each stage of an architectural project named X  and adopt as a work methodology:

Typical Stages of an architectural Project X:

1.                 Initiating Architectural X

(a)                     Prepare initial log of drawings

(b)                    Architectural job initial plan

(c)                     Prepare initial List of Project Rooms.

(d)                    Create a filing system following CP's Standards

(e)                     Preparing CAD file X0 including:

                (i)     The typical layers i.e.; Grid lines, brick wall, concrete, marble, ceiling , furniture, fixtures, text, dimension and etc all tied in saved layer statuses.

             (ii)     Dimension and text styles for the expected scales.

           (iii)     A Plot style for each discipline and scale i.e.; Floor Finish Plan, Wall Finish, Ceiling Plan, details and etc.

            (iv)     standard mark-up formats for details, section references and etc.

              (v)     Different scale title blocks.

            (vi)     Layouts, Viewports, dimension styles and text styles for different scale print-outs.

2.                 Starting-Up Project X

(a)                     Prepare Final approved log of drawings

(b)                    Architectural job Final approved plan

(c)                     Prepare Final approved List of Project Rooms.

(d)                    Prepare Doors and Windows schedule

(e)                     Prepare Final approved Room Finishing Schedule

3.                 Planning and Controlling Project X

(a)     Weekly progress report.      

(b)    Team members Daily To Do Lists

(c)     Receive drawings from drafting team

(d)    Review Drawings

(e)     Revise Drawings

(f)      Final Review

(g)     Submit the drawing

(h)    Update the plan

(i)      Update the log of the drawings

(j)      Update Drawings Soft Copy in Sever

4.                                 Closing Project X

(a)                     Get the approval letter

(b)                    Get the approved hard copy of the dawings

(c)                     Hand over all the final documents


Note:

·        It had been noted that most of our draftsmen either refuse or do not know how to make use of some of the most helpful  AutoCAD features such as : view ports , Layers II tool bar and etc; it is the responsibility of the assigned architect to teach his team and make sure they are implementing the useful experience from him or her.

·         In case you need any help to achieve the above please do not hesitate to contact the Sr. Architect.

 




2.                 General Instructions for drafting team:

1.                                     Use the approved consistent layers and plot styles for each package drawings.

2.                                     Cloud and Mark up each single new change.

3.                                     Update the Title Blocks as you go.

4.                                     Update the saved CAD files on server.

5.                                     Keep Saving back-up files of your work in your PCs.

6.                                     Prior to printing, Have a quick look on the soft copy to make sure that all the required changes are already done.

7.                                     Print drawings for internal review on the smallest readable paper size.

8.                                     Report any mismatching between the files you are using and the system created and followed by the team.

9.                                     Handover a Soft Copy along with the hard copy to the team leader for each review.


Ali M. Ali
Sr. Architect


Wednesday, 19 August 2009

Why Novartis Backed Off from Enterprise Software

Table of contents
PM 101: CONTEMPORARY PROJECT MANAGEMENT 1
TABLE OF CONTENTS 2
SUMMARY 3
1.WHY WAS NOVARTIS HAVING TROUBLES WITH ITS REQUISITION-TO-PAY PROCESS? 4
2.WHAT MANAGEMENT, ORGANISATION, AND TECHNOLOGY FACTORS WERE INVOLVED? 4
2.1 Management factors: 5
2.2 Organisation Factors: 6
2.3 Technology Factors: 6
3.WAS THE SOLUTION TO THIS PROBLEM A GOOD ONE? 7
4.WHY? 7
CONCLUSION 7
REFERENCES: 8
BIBLIOGRAPHY: 9

Summary
Change Management is a major challenge may confront any organisational progress when an organisation tries to superimpose a system. Prior to the risk of the new system failure in meeting its goals there are many other risks embedded in expected and unexpected conflicts, lack of enthusiasm to the new system especially with the hygiene seekers and obstacles by the protestants who may feel their current titles threatened by the upcoming change.
When this change is an expansive large scale one which may extend to reach different geographical or/and work areas, coordination challenge will rise in the horizon and may enforce the organisation to assign a team especially to handle the job, inserting such a new team will definitely impact the organisation structure and the elations amongst the existing teams.
Ensuring success of any change in terms of implementation is one hundred percent a matter of configuration management. This was the learned lesson from “Why Novartis Backed Off from Enterprise Software” case study and this is what will be discussed through this paper.

In today’s fast growing market major changes must be applied to the world wide organisations’ communication systems as a response to the need of integrated systems with the ability of covering different departments and crossing geographical borders ensuring the smooth flow of information at relatively low cost.

‘ERP is (Enterprise Resource Planning) An integrated information system that serves all departments within an enterprise.’ (PCMAG.COM, 2009)
Usually implementing an ERP system aims to Total Cost Reduction by reducing the cost of internal communications, requisition-to-pay process and information exchange.

Although ERP may observably help cost reduction which may be big temptation to the upper management, many challenges are embedded in the implementation process some of those are ‘The Need for Business Continuity…Working in Partnership’ (AMEInfo, 2003).

Shortage in change management planning and control will definitely lead to failure further to creating unnecessary problems with organisation financials, structure, politics and etc.

To avoid these headaches, attention shall be paid to the coming considerations ‘In-house Technical Expertise… Trust Your Consultant … Do Not Over negotiate’ (Karasev, 2009)
Change management and configuration management considerations shall be carefully yet strictly implemented when intending to start such a vital yet risky process.
1. Why was Novartis having troubles with its requisition-to-pay process?
‘It was not a true integrated requisition-to-pay process’ (Overby, 2003).
Novartis was having trouble because of the following:
• The high cost of its system integration as many processes needed manual processing ‘. . . The company’s existing process for invoicing was inefficient, requiring manual approvals from many different managers’ (Overby, 2004)

• Their operations in various countries needed to get tied all together and coordination amongst them needed to be done. ‘. . . were impressed by SAP’s ability to address their industry-specific business requirements as well as the vendor’s superior global service and support network’ (Overby, 2004)


2. What management, organisation, and technology factors were involved?
Another definition of ERP is : ‘ERP software is multi-module application software that integrates activities across functional departments, from product planning, parts purchasing, inventory control, product distribution, to order tracking’ (Zhang, 2005)
Looking at Novartis case study under the light of this definition helps recognising management, organisation, and technology factors were involved.

2.1 Management factors:

• Lack of Configuration Management.
As training on a new system is one of the most critical considerations of a system superimpose; it must be planned and executed prior to the system implementation and unfortunately this was not taken seriously by Novartis leading to a serious conflict.
‘...information systems specialists scrimped on training and did not pay sufficient attention to the new system’s impact on business processes.’ (Overby, 2004)

• Lack of Motivation.
Implementing a new system which is expected to have a serious impact on particular working zones requires proper motivation in order to keep every one on the track. Expected benefits should be highlighted through real life training precedes implementation this would work as a kind of encouragement.
In our case staff especially accounts were not ready and when they showed lack of enthusiasm they should be taken seriously by the management, they are the experts in their zone.
‘The accounts payable and strategic sourcing departments fingered a recent upgrade to the SAP R/3 financial modules as the source of their financial crisis. ’ (Overby, 2004)

• Coordination problems rose ahead.
Although the action by Ray Pawlicki, Novartis’s vice president for information and chief information officer to arrange a six months program to foster joint leadership was helpful as it gets the groups to finally start listening to each other, yet it was a late action which if done earlier to the clash would save a lot money and time in stead of leaving each of the groups working in his own silo.

• Taking the Wrong Decisions and the Right Ones in a Wrong Way.
- Although the information system department is the one to decide only when it is about the implementation technical information decision, they felt free to decide for the accounts when they insisted from their side on applying the new system to all departments assuming that success is a logic result as the system worked in other organisational areas, This was a big common mistake as I assume that visiting the expert of each working area separately is a major key of success which was ignored leading to political problems like the strict refuge by the accounts to the new system.
- The two last out comes of the coordination meeting were taken regardless of the software vendor whom should be involved in the decision making as a consultant.
‘. .irrespective of the software vendor and that would best support the company’s redesigned purchasing process.’ (Overby, 2004)

• Improper Task Assignment against Deadlines, Budgets and Information Systems.
When assigning the task of training on the information system specialists should be divided into groups to avoid or at least reduce the impact of their training on their attention to the new system’s impact on business processes because of tight deadlines and limited budget.

2.2 Organisation Factors:
‘Making effective use of ERP generally means solving problems with business processes and organizational design’ (Scavo, 2004)

• The Organisation Chart should be redesigned flexibly to best serve the change period’s requirements; this should be done as a part of the change management plan. It would be better if a place was reserved for a representative of the software vendors who should follow up the process closely and coordinate amongst all related parties avoiding conflicts due to the expected and unexpected misunderstanding of the process requirement and sequence.

• The BIM team should be created and showed in the organisational chart earlier so that they would have the opportunity to estimate and report technical problems before they turn into facts. ‘ The information systems department had assigned special staff members to serve as business information managers (BIMs) who could work more closely with end user departments to clarify and support business goals’(Overby, 2004)

• Major early coordination amongst various departments should be done before starting SAP up. A process coordinator should be hired to cover the coordination instead of having the information system team over loaded trying to win two battles in two zones a time.

2.3 Technology Factors:
‘The system is good, but it's being used ineffectively’ (Scavo, 2004)

• Communication:
It was clear since the job started that Novartis was confronting internal and external communication problems and fixing them was the heart and the soul of the intended software implementation.
‘Somewhere in the process of paying invoices, payments were being held, and a backlog of overdue bills was building. A few vendors even withheld credit from the company.’ (Overby, 2004)
Lack of communication led to two different approaches by two different teams whom it took very long time to produce something an agreeable solution by both of them.
‘The accounts payable and strategic sourcing departments fingered a recent upgrade to the SAP R/3 financial modules as the source of their financial crisis… The information systems staff thought a recent implementation of the SAP R/3 software would solve the problem.’ (Overby, 2004)
3. Was the solution to this problem a good one?
‘One was to create a new way for the information systems. . . The other outcome was a proposal to improve the purchasing process for Novartis departments so that they would no longer make independent purchases. . . ’ (Overby, 2004)

• The answer is yes.
4. Why?

• The proposed solution could manage one of the expected advantages of SAP if succeeded; this was the cost reduction through selling in larger quantities; around $4 million was saved in six months time. Although this sound very fine but in case they succeeded with SAP the saved amount would be much larger on the long run.

• The best of breed solution was simpler and less expensive than the intended process. ‘However, Web service is promising to make the process of connecting best-of-breed applications simpler and less costly than it has been in the past, when complicated interfaces were required to integrate solutions from different vendors.’ (Overby 2003)

• Both teams reached an agreed proposal through negotiations which was a good experience for the future. As they were solving their problems together they were creating a healthy communication environment.


Conclusion

• ERP Implementation is not at all a piece of cake, it requires high standards of awareness of change management, configuration management, flexibility in organisation chart and a lot of training.
• ERP may look like the magic lamp in the way of the Total Cost Reduction through saving non necessary cost in today’s world such as the old fashion transportation and correspondence methods yet ERP is not a harsh solution, it can be developed and redesigned to meet each organisation’s needs.


References:
• PCMAG.COM. July 11, 2009. http://www.pcmag.com/encyclopedia_term/0,2542,t=ERP&i=42727,00.asp (accessed July 11, 2009).
• "AMEInfo." How to successfully implement a disaster recovery plan. June 23, 2003. http://www.ameinfo.com/25389.html (accessed July 12, 2009).
• Karasev, Andrew. "ERP Implementation: Success Factors." Ezine@rticles.com. July 2009. http://ezinearticles.com/?ERP-Implementation:-Success-Factors&id=53575 (accessed July 09, 2009).
• Overby, Stephanie. "Enterprise Application Integration: This Could Be the Start of Something Small." CIO. February 15, 2003. http://www.cio.com/article/31703/Enterprise_Application_Integration_This_Could_Be_the_Start_of_Something_Small?page=2 (accessed July 11, 2009).
• Overby, Stephanie. “Can’t We All Just Get Along?” CIO Australia, March 10, 2004 and “SAP Chosen by Novartis as a Major Building Block,” EETimes, June 16, 2003.
• Zhang, Bruce. "ERP Definition - A Systems Perspective." www.sysoptima.com. Augost 08, 2005. http://www.sysoptima.com/erp/erp_definition.php (accessed July 10, 2009).
• Scavo, Frank. "The Enterprise System Spectator." http://fscavo.blogspot.com. May 31, 2004. http://fscavo.blogspot.com/2004_05_01_fscavo_archive.html#108446344417981237 (accessed July 08, 2009).


Bibliography:
• Stephanie Overby, “Can’t We All Just Get Along?” CIO Australia, March 10, 2004 and “SAP Chosen by Novartis as a Major Building Block,” EETimes, June 16, 2003.
• Paliktzoglou, V.)2009) ‘PM 101 Strategic Context of Project Management Lecture Slides’. Switzerland: Robert Kennedy Collage.2009
• Paliktzoglou, V.)2009) ‘PM 102 Project Planning and Control Lecture Slides’. Switzerland: Robert Kennedy Collage.2009
• Paliktzoglou, V.)2009) ‘PM 103 Strategic Context of Project Management Lecture Slides’. Switzerland: Robert Kennedy Collage.2009
• Paliktzoglou, V.)2009) ‘PM 104 Project Planning and Control Lecture Slides’. Switzerland: Robert Kennedy Collage.2009
• Hugh MacMillan, Mahen Tampoe (2001) ‘Strategic Management: Process, Content, and Implementation’ London: Oxford Press
• The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc (2007). ‘Chapter Eight The Structure and Culture of a Business Organization’. McGraw-Hill Companies 2007
• The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc (2009). ‘Chapter 11 Organizational Structure’. McGraw-Hill Companies 2009.
• Organization and Teamwork Prentice Hall 2007 ‘Excellence in Business’. e3.
• Jay R. GALLBRAITH (February 1971) ‘Matrix Organisation Design how to combine Functional and project forms’. Business Horizons.
• Maurice Hardaker & Bryan K. Ward, (2003) ‘Getting Things Done, How to Make a Team Work’. Harvard Business Review November-December 1987. USA: EBSCO Publishing
• http://campus.college.ch/forum/posts/22898?page=1-11. RKC class forum. [accessed on 31 March 2009]
• http://blog.softwareprojects.org/self-organization-esther-derby-1069.html. [accessed on 31 March 2009]
• http://www.referenceforbusiness.com/management/Ob-Or/Organizational-Structure.html. [accessed on 31 March 2009]
• http://www.orgchart.net/. [accessed on 31 March 2009]
• Weihrich, H. and Koontz, H. 1993. ‘Management: A Global Perspective’. 10th edition. New York: McGraw-Hill
• http://www.ohl.es/Plantillas/SuperPlantilla.aspx?IdA=121&IdF=96&idM=439&nvl=1. [accessed on 31 March 2009]
• http://www.exampleoforganizationalchart.com/hierarchical.php.[accessed on 31 March 2009]

Thursday, 2 July 2009

The Projectized Against The Matrix Organisational Structure




By:Ali Al-Dimshawy

It is clear that we are in front of two serious problems here:

1- Poorly motivated staff.

2- Early leave of staff seeking more permanent positions.

Let us see what these two problems do with our two organizational structures

1- While work is organized along “project” lines:

- It is will known that this kind of structures ‘Leads to poor coordination’ . . .[and] ‘Eliminates in-depth competence and technical specialization’ (Duncan, 1979:431)

- This structure in its nature does not allow coordination or a bond between project team and the organization, this does not only give the resources the feeling of solitude and being ignorable by the organization, but also it does not help solving work problems as they appear. After while and as a result of lack of necessary coordination the project team will face a considerable number of pending problems this is a tough obstacle in the way of team motivation.

- This structure does not encourage the loyalty of the employees as they know that they are going to leave the company once the project is over, and who doesn’t seek a stable safe job?

- And another point is that most of professional resources look at this kind of jobs -from a hit and run point of view- as a platform for gaining experiences for their hopefully coming permanent position; those positions are not always within their current organizations.

The moral here is such a structure impact badly both loyalty and motivation of project team members.

2- The matrix structure and how it deals with these two problems:

- No doubt when an employee reports to his organization he knows that he is visible thus he tries his best for improving and proofing his performance as he knows this is the one and the only indicator of the period he can stay safe with his current position or further chasing his career in a stable environment.

- Duncan (1979:429) early argued the one of the matrix strengths is the Flexible sharing of human resources across products. This flexible sharing fastens recovery of problems either they are related to work or to resources motivation.

- Team motivation is still a case sensitive which needs special care by the management especially in matrix structure as the reorganizing it self can be a motivator by giving the team larger responsibilities and authorities.

It is important here to say that it is still better to keep using the same resources as possible while superimposing the structure but ‘significant learning must occur before an organization embarks on the transformation . . .’ (Tinnirello, 2001:194)

From all of the above I answer the question ‘Is this problem likely to be resolved by simply re-organizing the structure?’ saying yes re-organizing the structure may solve the problem when considering the other effecting factors. Organizations shall be carefully optimistic when applying a matrix structure, ‘It is only when all four-decision rights, information, motivation and structure – are integrated and aligned that an organization effectively executes’ (Galioto, 2006:15) reorganizing is not magic.

References and Bibliography:

· Duncan, Robert. (1979) What Is the Right Organization Structure? Decision Tree Analysis Provides the Answer. USA: Organizational Dynamics.

· Galioto, Frank. (2006).The Matrix Reloaded. The Multi-Axis Organization as Key to Competitive Advantage. USA: Booz Allen Hamilton Inc.

· Tinnirello, Paul C. (Editor) (2004) New Directions in Project Management. USA: Auerbach Publications

CERTIFICATION OF AUTHORSHIP

CERTIFICATION OF AUTHORSHIP

I certify that I am the author of this blog and that any assistance I received in its preparation is fully acknowledged and fully disclosed in this assignment/paper/examination. I have also cited any sources (footnotes or endnotes) from which I used data, ideas, theories, or words, whether quoted directly or paraphrased. I further acknowledge that this written work has been prepared by myself specifically for this course.

Ali 13-01-2009

The ideal project manager - First Things First

The ideal project manager

By: Ali Mohammad Ali

As a senior architect I am going to assign the characteristics of the ideal project manager,The ideal project manager as I recognize is a person who has the ability of managing a project through its different phases starting from design, planning, construction or production and then final analysis dealing smoothly and professionally with man-power, materials and products either they are software or hardware this leads us to the point of which skills or characteristics he should have in the few coming lines I am going to try ranking those properties of an ideal manager.

I would classify the skills of a manager in two major groups first one includes technical skills and the other one includes managerial skills.

  1. Technical skills

This kind of skills in my opinion is very vital for managing any process and to better explain my point of view let us take a construction project for example, if a company is handling a project and assigning a project manager who is suffering lack of technical experience, how can he evaluate his team performance? How hard to him would it be to evaluate and analyze the project situation? Of course he will go to apply the theories of management to the reports delivered to him by his team and this would break the communication chain among the team leading to the trap of throwing the ball over-the-fence (see “History of management” p.02by Prof Vasileios Paklitzoglou)

The moral here is that fair technical background is a must for the following:

  • It helps the manager to understand, analyze, and to predict suitable reactions the problems he may face during the time span of his project.
  • It enhances communication among his team members.
  • It gives the manger the ability of solving unexpected managerial problems rather to effectively interact with those suggestions provide by team members and develop them to applicable ones if they were not.

2- Managerial skills:

Besides the technical background an ideal manager must have a group of managerial characteristics here I am counting some of them:

  • Awareness of project management through study and work experience.
  • A high standard of communication skills.
  • The ability of managing a team.
  • He must know how to get each of his team(s) members involved in the real team work environment this can be done along working days and by arranging meeting discussing work status and needs.
  • The ability of hearing other opinions and analyzing them and picking what is useful to the job this enhances self confidence of team members.
  • The ability of keeping the sky clear in front of all team members regarding the work scopes and responsibilities of each this requires professionalism of data filtering to know who shall know what and when.
  • Flexible yet strict personality when dealing with unexpected changes during the time span of the project.
  • Enhancing the competition along with coordination among the teams.

Now it’s time to say that while I was writing my essay I was recalling the image of Mr. Mohammad Abdullah the best manager I’ve heard about.


Choosing an organisational structure And TQM implementing procedure

Strategic Context of Project Management

A Case study by:Ali Al-Dimshawy

05 April 2009



Table of contents

Summary. 3

Answer of Question 01: 4

Choosing an organisational structure: 4

(1-A) The project cost influence: 4

(1-B) The project schedule influence: 4

(1-C) The project duration influence: 5

(1-D) The technology requirements influence: 5

(1-E) The geographical locations influence: 5

(1-F) The required working relationships with the client influence: 6

Conclusion: 6

Answer of Question 02: 7

(2-A) TQM implementing procedure at GPCC: 7

(2-B) TQM implementing barriers at GPCC: 7

(2-B-1) GPCC Organisational Culture: 7

(2-B-2) GPCC Organisational Structure: 8

(2-B-3) Disregarding the internal customers: 8

References: 9

Bibliography: 10

Summary

Question 01:

An organisation structure is the Bible of individuals’ roles and relationships, when designing a structure of an organisation the focus shall be placed on its compatibility with the intended work, the kills of resources and the integrity amongst team work,

Some parameters have different ranges of influence on the organisational structure (i.e. project cost, the project schedule, the project duration, the technology requirements, the geographical locations and the required working relationships with the client), the thesis is discussing how deep and different each of those parameters effects the design of organisational structure.

Question 02:

In May 2004 Neil Johnston the English PM with Gulf Precast Concrete Company the cladding subcontractor at The Dubai Mall project - a part of Burj Dubai the $20 Billion project- proposed a TQM plan and submitted it to GPCC’s CEO.

The procedure of TQM implementation did not flow smoothly; it confronted some internal barriers like organisation culture, organisational structure and others.

This thesis is going to dig the story trying to highlight the followed procedure comparing to Vasilieos 12 step proposal and barriers confronted TQM implementation within such a large scale construction project.

Answer of Question 01:

Choosing an organisational structure:

Organization Chart is ‘The framework of task and authority relationships in a company’ (McGraw, 2009: 08)

Mainly there are two formats to choose among for an organisational structure; the functional structure which ‘is one on which the tasks, people, and technologies necessary to do the work of the business are divided into separate “Functional” groups’ (McGraw-Hill, 2009:07), the hierarchical which is also called the product or project structure and considered as the typical format of small projects as it is similar to the functional one except functional division is replaced by product lines divisions. However both structures have something in common that is all departments leaders are connected directly to a project manager who plays the bridge between the project and the organisation. One hybrid of these two formats is always possible and called the matrix structure which allows managers to work in two organizational dimensions, producing high standards of management and control.

(1-A) The project cost influence:

According to Galbraith, 1973 ‘The other factor favouring a functional form is the degree to which the expensive equipment in manufacturing …’ (Galbraith, 1971:39)

As the functional structure provides a stand alone financial department which has a better opportunity to manage particular budgeting and cost control in each functional zone, so as long as it is all about cost influence the functional structure will be the best for an organisation. Once other factors like the projects sizes, complexity and/or geographical location are involved, considering a matrix structure is a must.

(1-B) The project schedule influence:

When scheduling is the cornerstone of a project, picking the product structure would be the first option as it keeps the focus tracking a product through its design, manufacturing and marketing phases. Whilst functional structure focuses more on discipline rather than program oriented as it zooms in individual performance of resources within a department more than looking at the production procedure as a whole.

(1-C) The project duration influence:

When talking about time saving and control, the preferable structure would be the projectized as it supplies rapid reactions and time making through the relatively shorter decision making track which ends in the PM hands instead of explicit need of coordination amongst functional managers which leads to ad hoc time predicting.

One of the functional charts disadvantages is the weakness of project authority because of it doesn’t provide sufficient horizontal communication.

(1-D) The technology requirements influence:

When the need of new or complicated technologies rises in a project and when these new technologies are too complicated to be controlled by the PM, a specialist shall be invited to join the team and may be to lead a team of technicians with sufficient authorities of decision making. Such a team cannot be contained in a projectized structure where the full authority and power is in PM’s hands then efficient use of specialists is not provided. Here the Functional Chart announces readiness for giving help.

This was argued by Galbraith, 1971 ‘The use of new technologies requires expertise in technical specialities…to make effective use of expertise the Functional form of organisation is superior’ (Galbraith, 1971:39)

(1-E) The geographical locations influence:

Almost two cases for the geographical locations exist, the first is the project is fully located in one location where other factors but geographical may impact the choice of a structure as explained above.

The other case is when project/s is distributed over more than one country or region where over all control is still needed, in this case the superior structure is the Matrix which combines the traditional functional structure with horizontal lines reflecting the interface between heads of departments and managers of areas.

However a specific Matrix called Geographical Matrix Chart was designed and developed by international companies to cover their needs of management their overseas jobs.

(1-F) The required working relationships with the client influence:

The relationship needed with the client varies between being a single point contact relationship to having the focus totally on him; this depends on the nature of the product and the clearness of client inquiries and specifications and many other factors. Projectized structures will best serve in the case of the single point customer contact and a PM in that case will be this point of contact that helps keeping the client feeling better towards work procedure as it keeps him updated along project duration.

Vasileios, 2009 counted among the disadvantages of functional structure: ‘The client is not the focus of activity and concern’ as this structure looks at activities through their functions only.

However I have been working as a project coordinator for an organization which used a matrix structure including a coordination department to contact the client with the organization. This structure from my point of view worked very well in this regard and filled in the gap between the different parties.

Conclusion:

It is still remaining to say that a fixed tip of advice regarding picking an organisational structure does not exist as each project has its unique circumstances so that the best term which may describe choosing a structure for an organization is to design it as per project needs, especially if speaking about medium and large scale projects where none of the two pure simple structures (functional and projectized) can help and a matrix structure shall be adopted.

Anyway a structure may be modified or even superimposed if needed to, so that a highly flexible vision shall attend during the project execution duration.

Answer of Question 02:

(2-A) TQM implementing procedure at GPCC:

‘TQM is a tool for continuous improvement that both improves quality and reduces cost’ (Hamilton & Preston, 1993:04)

Between January 2003 and June 2005 I was working as a sr. architect with GPCC at The Dubai Mall construction project where the company suffered lack of having a uniform quality system then. On May 2004 Neil Johnston the PM suggested to start implementing TQM system. Once the idea was announced, argument amongst project team about its implementation, benefits and obstacles rose up. Neil submitted his plan to the CEO and other internal departments’ managers. His report included assignments of tasks proposal, expected barriers analysis and the over all benefits, However after lot of meetings, calls and correspondence the CEO approved the idea and the following roles were agreed:

CEO was to ‘outline the Vision Statement, Mission Statement, & Guiding Principles [and to] create [and head] a steering committee’. (Vasilieos, 1996:10)

HR department was to arrange educational courses for the upper management in order to get them as aware as possible of the process procedure. It took the HR six months to accomplish the job with 40% efficiency as some of the employees were not interested to join an educational course.

PM was to manage the in field progress and to hire a Total Quality engineer who would ‘focus on the Owner/Customer (External) & Surveys’ (Vasilieos, 1996:10)

TQM committee was to ‘Implement Process Improvements’ (Vasilieos, 1996:10)

The project team was to ‘Use the Tools of TQM [and finally to] Know the Benefits of TQM’

Looking at Vasilieos lecture slides we would see that three out of the twelve ‘Steps in implementing TQM’ (Vasilieos, 1996:10) were not included in the above mentioned roles assignment; ‘Consider the Employees as an Internal Owners/customers [and] Provide a Quality Training Program [and] Establish Quality Improvement Teams’ (Vasilieos, 1996:10)

Why those steps were not taken? Why were not all the taken steps performed with 100% efficiency? The answer of these two questions may cover the barriers of TQM implementation process.

According to (Hau, 2000: 85-86, 88) the barriers include the following ‘Inability to Change Organizational Culture [and] Incompatible Organizational Structure and Isolated Individuals and Departments [and] Paying Inadequate Attention to Internal … Customers [and] Inadequate Use of Empowerment and Teamwork’.

(2-B) TQM implementing barriers at GPCC:

(2-B-1) GPCC Organisational Culture:

In our project I would say that GPCC had all over UAE reputation of being the company of managers; it was over managed as the stronger one fought, the bigger his opportunity to manage a department was. In such an organisational culture managers did not find the necessity of learning new techniques. They were managers because they were politically strong, in other words they were neither motivated nor strictly enforced to share the new TQM implementation process.

(2-B-2) GPCC Organisational Structure:

Because it was almost a Passive-Aggressive organisation with fully plugged channels between managers and other employees, communications means were to stay poor and non sufficient to carry the message to and from most of the project team members.

Individuals further to departments were isolated and out of the game.

(2-B-3) Disregarding the internal customers:

Ignoring providing motivators to those isolated individuals, the GPCC upper management insisted on disregarding one of the pillars of TQM which assumes that every one’s a customer either internal or external and the main job is to guarantee your customers satisfaction.

Simple motivation here could be done by sharing the concept and importance of TQM but poor communication which was a result of organisation culture caused poor education within the project fence.

(Padhi, 2002: 01) illustrated figure 01 and explained that ‘To be successful implementing TQM, an organization must concentrate on the eight key elements…’

Figure (01)

In our real life GPCC case study we found defects in integrity, teamwork, recognition and above all of those lack of communication which Padhi considered the body and the soul of TQM.

The moral here is that GPCC could not reach 100% TQM further to client’s complete satisfaction yet the talented Neil Johnston could hardly get the approval on the work constructed in site and at the end GPCC hardly survived the project.

Although the medicine of this entire headache was just here, If GPCC only paid attention to these figured eight elements it could overcome the barriers to proper TQM implementation.

The process needed more involvement of all concerned individuals by assigning clear role to each resource, clarifying the benefits of TQM to the resources, motivating them by using considerable incentives and supplying them with proper communication means and work environment.

This does not mean that the TQM had failed to meet its benefits but it means that GPCC failed to implement it properly.

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