Author: Dr. Stephen K. A. Hammond, DBA. FPMP
Lecturer, Institute of Project Management Professionals
In the study of critical success factors in a Public Housing Building Project (PHBP) Adinyira et al. (2012) found that the critical success factors were time, cost and quality management; satisfaction, hand environmental safety; beneficiary affordability and design consideration; and cost of individual units and technology. These above mentioned critical success factors seem inadequate considering recent benchmarks for measuring project success by some scholars to include end-user benefit or user involvement, and cultural and political influence (Atif, 2012; Shenrar & Dvir, 2010). Considering that most projects in the MMDAs are classified under the construction category, the outcome of this research regarding critical success factors would be relevant to the MMDAs in Ghana. In another study undertaken in Imo State, Nigeria, Amade, Ubani, Omajeh, Anita and Njoku (2015) found the key success factors in the public sector construction industry were efficient and effective procurement processes/methods; effective communication management; sufficient planning; leadership abilities of the project manager; weather conditions; and effective coordination of project activities. However, planning served as the most significant success factor of construction projects. According to Baccarini, Salm and Love (2004), critical success factors of projects are a “set of circumstances, facts or influences which contribute to the project’s outcome” (p. 22). It is also defined as the key variables that a project manager must pay attention to in order to achieve its stated goals and objectives (Ika et al., 2010). Key success factors of projects have varied from one project to the other based on the nature of projects and the goals of the projects. Chan, Scott, and Chan (2004) identified key success factors for construction projects. These factors relate to project management practices, project procedures, human related factors, and external environments. Chan et al. (2004) were of the view that a project will be successful based on the following conditions: “if the: project complexity is low; project is of shorter duration; overall managerial actions are effective; project is funded by a private and experienced client; client is competent in preparing the project brief and making decisions; project team leaders are competent and experienced; and project is executed in a stable environment with developed technology together with an appropriate organization structure” (Chan, Scott & Chan, 2004, p. 155). As recent as these works may be, they have excluded the end-user benefit as one of the critical success factors, especially for a house building project. Although Amade, Ubani, Omajeh, Anita, and Njoku (2015) left out the end-user benefit in the analysis of critical success factors, the research, however, included some laudable factors including effective communication management, effective coordination of project activities and leadership skills of the project manager. It goes without saying that what measures determine a project success may vary from project to project (Adinyira et al., 2012). While that point is notable, the researcher believes that an important component of project success factors must include the user involvement and end-user benefit, however, both research works above excluded it. In essence, the researcher believed that a key stakeholder such as the end-user of a said project should be a reference for measuring project success among other critical success factors.
Keywords: Project Success, Project Management Practices, Empirical Studies