A study on effective management of GIS projects

Pao Yue-kong Library Electronic Theses Database

A study on effective management of GIS projects

 

Author: So, Chak-tong Anthony
Title: A study on effective management of GIS projects
Degree: M.Sc.
Year: 2009
Subject: Hong Kong Polytechnic University -- Dissertations.
Geographic information systems.
Project management.
Department: Dept. of Land Surveying and Geo-Informatics
Pages: xiii, 181 leaves : ill. ; 30 cm.
Language: English
InnoPac Record: http://library.polyu.edu.hk/record=b2322860
URI: http://theses.lib.polyu.edu.hk/handle/200/3455
Abstract: Geographic Information Systems (GIS) have become a global trend for computer information systems. Many organisations have developed or are planning to develop GIS platforms as part of their business platforms. In addition to improving the effectiveness and efficiency of the operations, such development would also increase competitive advantages over their counterparts. The implementation of GIS projects is constrained by three factors: time, cost and scope. For a GIS project to be successful, these three constraints must be in equilibrium. The survey results indicate that only one-third of the IT projects conducted were completed successfully. In view of high investment costs for GIS projects, effective project management has to be implemented to ensure the success of these projects. For that reason, careful selection of a suitable project management framework is needed. Three 'Components' form the skeleton of the GIS project management framework: project management methodology, software development methodology and GIS software. Many different methods exist in each project management 'Component'. Each of these methods has unique characteristics, advantages and limitations with respect to business, technical and human issues which have to be considered before choosing the most suitable method. The case study indicates various factors impacting the GIS project management. The business and technical issues affecting the use of project management methodology, software development methodology and GIS software are highlighted and they are agreed well with the findings of this study. The human issues are rarely mentioned in case studies as the organisations are somewhat reluctant to disclose their internal staff problems. To facilitate the prospective organisations to identify the best development approach, an easy-to-follow scorecard system is proposed to quantitatively assess the importance of each aspect for a particular type of GIS project. The scorecard approach does not only provide a checklist to assess all the relevant factors, but more importantly, gives full confidence to the management because of its comprehensive, systemic and quantitative nature. In addition, the scorecard also serves as a decision making tool for the management when establishing the most suitable project management framework. The proposed scorecard system is a new approach using a quantitative method for assessing system development related issues for determination of effective project management framework. It is suggested to conduct a pilot trial to test this framework and obtain feedback from the users for improvement. A larger scale trial may follow at a later stage when more users and different types of business organisations will be involved. It is hoped that this approach will not only be limited to the GIS projects and can be extended to any IT projects or even non-IT projects.

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