Project Management Office Support
An issue all too frequently observed in the procurement of major projects, is that contract administration – being generally guided by the views of the project manager – is not driven by the contents of the contract.
Rather, it is driven by a “virtual contract” formed in the mind of the project manager, supported by the views of that project manager as to what is “right” and what is “best”. While there’s nothing inherently wrong with allowing common sense and creativity to dictate the direction and actions taken to avoid or deal with disputes, it is certainly materially disadvantageous to do this unwittingly.
This situation often arises when a particular approach to a dispute worked well for the project for which it was devised – but may not work at all well in the very different legal, commercial or relationship context of the current project.
Too often, it is discovered – at the point of a truly stressed project having to resort to legal action – that project navigation and people skills have been over-relied upon. By this time, a project owner or procurement agency finds it has diverted from the contract sufficiently to have created a situation which is discordant with the legal system. The resultant unpredictability of outcome produced by the legal system rarely – in such a scenario – delights any of the parties.
The solution is a comprehensive review of project implementation to identify and inform process refinements, along with guided project administration with a view to identifying risks and non-compliance within prescribed protocols.