IBM Project Management

On February 5, 1997, the IBM Project Management Centre of Excellence
(PMCOE) was born with a charter to drive IBM’s transition to and support
of professional project management worldwide, a competency deemed
necessary to ensure effectiveness and success within a matrix enterprise.
Since its inception, the IBM PMCOE—working hand in hand with all
business units worldwide—ensured that we became a project- based
enterprise that applies and integrates project Management disciplines into
all core business processes and systems.
The initial charter drove more consistent and broader use of project
management disciplines, including the formalization of the position of
project manager throughout our organization.
Over time, the IBM PMCOE has driven the transformation and integration
of project management into the fabric of the organization. Our
professionals are more experienced and capable in their abilities to get
their work done using project management disciplines.
In addition to being one of the world’s largest IT and consulting services
company, IBM is a global business and technology leader, innovating in
research and development to shape the future of society at large.
Today, we see ourselves as much more than an Information Technology
Company. In April 2016, IBM’s Chairman, President and CEO, Ginni Rometty
described the dawn of a new era, shaped by AI computing and cloud
platforms. She described how the IT industry is fundamentally re-ordering
at an unprecedented pace. In response, IBM is becoming much more than a
“hardware, software, services” company. We are emerging as an AI
solutions and cloud Platform Company.
Fundamental to the success of this transformation is the skills and abilities
of our workforce. We are being challenged to be relevant to the
marketplace of tomorrow. As a focus on continuous learning, we have
Think40 where we are encouraged to spend 40 hours every year to up-skill.
We are encouraged to have a point of view, be socially eminent and be
comfortable in a customer facing situation. We are provided with the tools
and techniques, including new ways of learning such as video, gaming and
interactive eLearning techniques to enable this objective. New phrases and
concepts are creeping into the everyday vocabulary of our teams, such as
agile, design thinking, calculated risk-taking and better collaboration.
IBM’s PMCOE is no exception to this transformation—and 2017 marked the
20th anniversary of the Centre of Excellence, which clearly shows our
ongoing commitment to project management as a key profession within
the corporation.
Our PM curriculum is delivered globally and across all lines of business,
helping to drive a consistent base of terminology and understanding across
the company. And our project and program management profession has
established an end-to end process to “quality assure” progress through the
project management career path.
Question 1 (10 marks)
Referring to the extract, the company reorganised to include project
management in its operations. With this in mind, justify why companies
have an increased interest in project management in recent times.
(10 marks)
Question 2 (10 marks)
Over time, the IBM PMCOE has driven the transformation and integration
of project management into the fabric of the organization”. Evident from
this assertion is that this company has and continues to align projects to its
Discuss (in a paragraph) the importance of aligning projects to strategy.
(5 marks)
Justify with real life examples why the project manager should understand
the strategic position of the firm.
(5 marks)
Question 3 (10 Marks)
You have been appointed the project manager at IBM, a company
operating in a fast paced IT market. You wish to emphasise to the company
bosses the need establish the sound project priority system, and highlight
some of the techniques you would employ in selecting projects fairly. Write
a discussion of not more than one page in account of these two aspects.
(10 Marks)

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