Projects are an increasingly common way of organising work in organisations. Projects are different from processes. Involvement in one or more projects is a near-permanent fixture on the annual task list of the modern knowledge worker. Projects vary greatly in scale and scope, but share common characteristics such as a specified output, an end signal, and the involvement of multiple people working interdependently over an extended time period. Ongoing coordination is required to keep the right people working on the right tasks at the right time in the right way. Projects differ from processes in one key way: a project has a pre-determined end date, while a process does not. In contrast, processes are ongoing until they are cancelled or abandoned.
This principles whitepaper explores the state of running team projects today, looks at the research on running team projects, and casts our vision for improving this important aspect of organisational life.