Ireland Chapter of PMI

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Expansion of Ireland’s State Airports named Ireland’s most influential project in past 50 years

Winners of the 2019 National Project Awards are:

  • Ireland’s Jubilee Project Award (sponsored by PwC): Expansion of Ireland’s State Airports 
  • Project Professional of the Year (sponsored by Aspira): Brian Cliffe — Cork Institute of Technology
  • PMO of the Year (sponsored by CORA Systems): Ervia / Ervia Business Services — Standing on the Shoulders of Giants
  • Public Sector Project of the Year (sponsored by IPA): Health Service Executive (HSE) — Digital Ambulance
  • Private Sector (National) Project of the Year (sponsored by Ireland Chapter of PMI):Optum (UnitedHealth Group) — Payment Integrity Automation
  • Private Sector (Multinational) Project of the Year (sponsored by Hovione (Ireland) Ltd — Re-launch of Building 2
  • Social Good - Community Project of the Year (sponsored by AIB): Wells for Zoë
  • Social Good - Corporate Project of the Year (sponsored by Teamwork): Business in the Community Ireland (BITCI) — Low Carbon Pledge 


14 NOVEMBER 2019: The expansion of Ireland’s state airports has been revealed as Ireland’s most influential project over the past 50 years at the Ireland Chapter of Project Management Institute’s (PMI) National Project Awards, held in partnership with PwC.

Celebrating the 50th anniversary of PMI globally, the expansion of Cork, Dublin and Shannon Airports, which served almost 36 million passengers last year between them, scooped the special Jubilee Award following a joint public and jury vote. A further seven winners, all excelling within the project management discipline, were also revealed on the night, including Brian Cliffe, Project Management Course Coordinator at Cork Institute of Technology, who was named Project Professional of the Year. The judges acknowledged Brian for his commitment to the project management profession, applauding him for being a “leader and contributor”.

At the black-tie event at PwC, Spencer Dock, Dublin 1 on 14 November compered by Anton Savage, the Project Management Office (PMO) of the Year was awarded to Ervia / Ervia Business Services for their Standing on the Shoulders of Giants initiative that established Change & Transformation PMO capabilities.

Public Sector Project of the Year went to the Health Service Executive (HSE) for the Digital Ambulance, a project which implemented new technology in Emergency Ambulances and Rapid Response Vehicles for the National Ambulance Service. Private Sector (National) Project of the Year was awarded to Optum (UnitedHealth Group) for its Payment Integrity Automation programme while the Private Sector (Multinational) Project of the Year went to Hovione (Ireland) Ltd for the re-launch of Building 2, a landmark manufacturing facility in Ringaskiddy.

Irish charity Wells for Zoë, which is dedicated to the provision of safe drinking water in northern Malawi, was named Social Good - Community Project of the Year and Business in the Community Ireland’s (BITCI) Low Carbon Pledge — the first dedicated pledge generated by Irish businesses to set industry standards on sustainability — scooped Social Good - Corporate Project of the Year.

Speaking on the winners, President of the Ireland Chapter of PMI Pat Lucey, stated: “From implementing new technology that builds a better health service to the recommissioning and qualifying of a full-scale manufacturing facility, the 2019 winners of the National Project Awards are hugely diverse but are linked through their exceptional use of project management to deliver complex projects.

“This year we celebrate the 50th anniversary of the PMI, who, for the past five decades have defined the project management discipline and, ultimately the profession through globally recognised standards, practices, communities and resources. The decision of the five founding members to establish the PMI 50 years ago has shaped the world as we know it and the winning projects are a reflection of what can be achieved when project management is effectively implemented. We are especially delighted to reveal Ireland’s Jubilee Project Award, with our State Airports a worthy winner for their vital role in keeping Ireland connected globally.”

Mr Lucey expressed his appreciation to the judging panel for their work in selecting the winners, and to Matheson, the independent verifier for the judging process. He added his sincere thanks to the National Project Awards’ sponsors — PwC, along with AIB, Aspira, CORA Systems, IPA, and Teamwork.

Féilim Harvey, PwC Portfolio and Programme Management Leader, said: “PwC is delighted to again support the Ireland Chapter of PMI to host the 2019 National Project Awards celebrating project management excellence. This year, as ever, we have a superb shortlist of fantastic projects, all demonstrating top class project management.  In particular, in the 50th year of the PMI, we have a very special Jubilee Award, showcasing the single key project that has made a real difference to people's lives in Ireland in the last 50 years. 

“Project management is central to Irish business success and our recent research shows that project managers will need to think beyond the traditional, look to innovation and new thinking to deliver sustainable projects into the future.

"PwC is very proud to be associated with these prestigious Awards. We congratulate all of the winners and those shortlisted for your tremendous achievements." 

All members who are thinking about obtaining their certification should be aware that the PMP Exam will be changing in July of 2020.

The last day for candidates to take the current version of the PMP exam is now 30 June 2020. Starting 1 July, 2020, the PMP exam will reflect the new exam content

A few things to keep in mind, depending on how far you are on your path to the PMP:

·       Schedule your exam early. This will allow you to select the date and location that will work best with your schedule. Most people reserve their exam date 3 months in advance.

·       Pay for your exam promptly. You can only schedule your exam after you've paid for it. Allow yourself enough time. Make sure you are able to follow the PMP timeline:

Once you open the application, you have 90 days to complete and submit it.

You have one year from the date of your application approval to pass the exam. Sometimes, more than one attempt is necessary so be sure to leave enough time to re-take the exam before your eligibility expires (one year after your application is approved).

What is changing?

Project management professionals need more diverse skills and approaches than ever before. The PMP is evolving just like the profession – and the new exam will focus on three new domains:

1.    PEOPLE – emphasizing the skills and activities associated with effectively leading a project team

2.    PROCESS – reinforcing the technical aspects of managing a project

3.    BUSINESS ENVIRONMENT – highlighting the connection between projects and organization strategy

Content that spans the value spectrum, including predictive, agile and hybrid approaches, will be included across the three exam domains. The best way to understand what is included in the exam is to review the updated Exam Content Outline.

Expect to see:

More approaches to delivering outcomes. The exam will cover both predictive (approximately 50%) and agile/hybrid (approximately 50%) approaches to project management.

Domains aligned to real-life practices. The number of domains will be reduced from five to three.

Further specifics regarding the changes can be found on the website:

Ireland’s project managers have more to do on embedding emerging technologies, more emphasis on digital skills and adopting sustainable practices needed. 

These are some of the key findings from PwC’s new research amongst Ireland’s leading project managers, and who are members of the Ireland Chapter of Project Management Institute (PMI).  This survey provides tremendous insight from the project leaders driving change throughout Ireland and provides a bellwether on project management in today’s complex world of business.  The survey is published ahead of the National Project Awards to be held on 14 November at PwC.

Digital technologies need to be fully embedded in project management

While mature technologies such as online collaboration tools and video conferencing are regularly used, the majority of respondents admitted that important digital tools such as data analytics and visualisation, project management software, cloud storage and cybersecurity tools are not regularly used.  

The survey further highlights that Project Managers now need to think beyond traditional project management tools and embrace emerging technologies such as robotics, data analytics and Artificial Intelligence (AI). Our survey demonstrates that such tools are currently having very little impact on Irish project management activities notwithstanding the significant amount of project management related innovation in this space and applicable solutions now available to Project Managers.

At the same time, nearly half (44%) of respondents confirmed that the use of technology facilitates a more flexible lifestyle while a further 28% admitted that technology is preventing them from ‘switching-off’ from work. This further highlights that technology is merely driving different methods of accessing more traditional work approaches rather than being used to make the management of projects more simple and efficient for our respondents. 

A shift to becoming more strategic

According to respondents, the role of the project manager will become more strategic in the next decade.  For example, they will have more emphasis on business interaction and stakeholder management; communication and people skills will be a greater focus; technology and data-driven decisions, process automation through AI and robotics will become much more important and project managers will become much more reliant on software tools. The focus will shift from just delivering the product to the long term impact it has on people and its successful adoption across the business.

More emphasis on digital skills needed

Nearly half (46%) said that the do not believe their organisation’s workforce has the necessary skills to exploit opportunities arising from digital tools.  However, those who use digital tools admit to having a positive experience.

Feilim Harvey, Partner, PwC Ireland Portfolio and Programme Management Practice, said: “The survey highlights a strong sense that digital tools have a positive impact on project delivery but much more needs to be done to take advantage of emerging technologies and developing the necessary skills required to exploit these tools.  Project managers now need to think beyond the traditional applications of project management software and fully embrace digital tools to make their projects more effective and efficient.

“At the same time, organisations need to be aware of the increasing demands on project managers to deliver successful projects and to consider what steps can be taken to manage the varying pressures.”

More action required on adoption of sustainable practices

A large majority (84%) reported that increasing environmental concerns are not influencing the prioritisation of project selection in their organisations.  Over half (53%) of managers surveyed said that they rarely or never consider the environmental impacts of projects prior to implementation.  At the same time, a similar proportion (55%) stated that they would refuse to work on a project that adversely impacts the environment.

Key barriers to implementing environmentally sustainable practices include: climate change not considered a priority for management (50%), climate change not embedded in organisational culture (46%), budget restrictions (33%) and climate change not valued by clients/customers (29%).   

Feilim Harvey concluded: “The survey highlights how infrequently organisations participating in the survey are considering the environmental impact of their projects. 

“It is clear from the data that the environmental impact of projects is an important personal consideration for Project Managers with 55% of project leaders stating they would refuse to work on a project that adversely impacts the environment; but organisations have yet to catch up with making this a prerequisite factor to consider when launching their projects.”

“For example, nearly a quarter (22%) of those surveyed always or often consider the environmental impact of a project while nearly one in five (17%) never consider it.  More action is required in the adoption and implementation of sustainable project management practices.”