Project Management – Touring Class Motorcycles
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Project Management – Touring Class Motorcycles
The firm has been a well-renowned manufacturer in the motorcycle cruisers and requires further expansion for producing motorcycles for the touring class and is quite favorable for long-distance travels. Other specifics of it includes that the motors should have to be larger than 1000 cc and targeted to customers that are males between the age group of 35 and 60 years on the global scale. The core challenge as a project manager is to manage different resources for providing grounds for such massive expansion and hence, take steps and strategies that can enhance the changeover of their operations. For this issue, the paper will analyze the most optimum project management type together with three mitigation steps that can easily be overlooked.
Newell and Grashina (2003) have provided a different outlook for project organization along with their respective types. Projects are made based on the fact that the resources are permanent whereas the project is not. Matrix project organization serves best in this purpose because of a more balanced approach between pure functional and pure project management organization. The core reason behind utilizing this approach is to strike a perfect balance between the authority of project manager and functional managers.
Under current scenario of having current operations to be unaffected with the expansion, it is required to allocate different resources; more specifically, skilled workers and professionals from different departments to work answerable to both their respective functional managers as well as project manager. Consider the need of having requirement of new material of construction that can house 1000 cc. of fuel and provide greater mileage. For doing that, a person from production department having expertise in design and fabrication of current middleweight cruisers can be quite helpful but s/he may not know much about the fabrication of touring class motorcycles. For that, interdepartmental communication and linkage with departments like designing, research and development would serve as a major advantage for the successful implementation of the process in a meager time span of five years. After allocation of resources, there might be an immediate need for construction supervisors and construction workers for excelling the project without dedicating any other valuable company resource crucial for maintaining production of middleweight cruisers. For this domain, the project-type organization becomes effective. Different talent targeted to the need of inception and afterwards, development of production lines should have to be met.
Besides the technical domain, finance and marketing department will also have to dedicate resources for successful completion of the project within a time span. The members would be provided responsibilities of seeking the project through from their very own domain and answer the progress to functional managers and project manager as well. Development of demographic analysis has proved quite helpful in pinpointing the age group of 35-65 males having income ranging from $55,000 to $100,000. For that, the prices of touring class motorcycles should be within that range. Other implications that can impact that decision process of deciding the price can include competitor’s presence, market penetration aspects and most importantly, customer perception related to middleweight cruisers and touring class motorcycles as well. From the current expansion, it is quite evident that the company does not have substantial problems in their brand recognition among the masses and is quite common. Nevertheless, competitors of touring class motorcycles in local and global markets pose threat to some degree that can be mitigated by lowering the price and most importantly, effective marketing campaign before product launch (Srivastava, Fahey and Christensen, 2001). For these factors, the four P’s of marketing should be carefully analyzed, and subsequent resources should have to be dedicated for the purpose.
On financial grounds, the provision of sound cost-benefit analysis is of the essence. Surely, the project would require a number of skilled workers and professionals for completing job under a mentioned time span. However, keeping a supervisory control over financial resource also plays an important role in managing expenses during each phase of project development.
After implementation and operational phase, the touring class motorcycles selling operations should have to be sought. For that corporate sales team and finance teams should have to work together for enhancing the sales of newly launched products and seek out potential customers that can enhance the sales of products. This aspect would be discussed in more detailed outlook considering the short-term and long-term goals and their perspectives.
Short-term and Long-term Needs
Like any other project, this project also bears some short-term as well as long-term needs that should have to be considered in the first place. Recovering investment and meeting the ROR (Rate of Return) demands set forth by the company is one of the crucial aspects. Moreover, it also encompasses facilitating a strategy for allowing the company to keep itself financial solvent while having required resources at hand to manage operational feasibility. During the operational phase, the employers should have to hire new talents and hence, provide them with job-targeted training for maintaining the process requirements. Surely, training new employees would cost companies some valuable revenue; however, it can provide a much better outlook for the company on the long-term basis.
A very similar problem is also with driving the sales margin because the sales team would be facing significant pressure during the product launch. And for counterbalancing the effects of employee turnover, the company have to devise methods for providing better salary packages in terms of incentives and performance bonuses. It could help in the creation of win-win situation on the short-term basis based on recovering invested capital before the designated ROI (Return of Investment) period.
For managing such diversifying task, a strategy should have to be made from the company’s top management while including the feedbacks of their employees and junior management as well. This initiative helps in alignment of company’s goals and objective while maintaining substantial dedication for people in the long run. The core essence in enhancing the success of the project is to find the most optimum balance for short-and long-term needs. While doing so, it helps in providing assessment of any future investments that should have to be made together with short-term perspective of the core assets that should have to be preserved (Hughes and Beatty, 2011).
Risk Mitigation and Catering the Needs
Besides the perfect implementation of different aspects in a project, the risk is one of the most crucial factors that should have to be considered before stepping into a market. It can include, low probability-high impact risks, improper response to a certain degree of uncertainty and organizational cultural outlooks.
High impact and low probability events are not quite commonly covered under the domain of contingency plans and upon the occurrence of such incidence would render lower probability quite meaningless parameter to consider. Suppose that the project would cost the company around $2,000,000 provided that an unexpected event (like, financial crises, law and order constraints and other natural disaster) does not occur. However, if it happens, it can cost the company around $60,000,000. Surely, assigning a contingency value of $60,000,000 to a project that is merely $2,000,000 is not a good financial decision. So, to mitigate the risk, it is required to reduce the likelihood and/or impact of the risk. Considering reducing the impact of risk, it includes having a secured insurance policy for the newly developed project to safeguard it against any mishap or accident. Nevertheless, it will not cover all the expenses related to expenses and surely, do not sound quite lucrative if it is considered on short-term perspective.
Most of the times, management and executives does not include a proper response towards a degree of uncertainty. Considering that the project of launching touring class motorcycles has to be completed in five years, a sound strategy is needed. Under those conditions, the best strategy is to complete the project within the dedicated time span so as to enhance the present value of the project and hence, start reclaiming balance between investment done and revenue driven. As discussed briefly earlier, fixed-price based contracts should have to be incorporated within different domains having scheduled incentives for contractual employees. Surely, if the project takes more than five years, it would cost a significant amount of capital to the company together with enhanced costs as part of man, machinery and material of construction. Longer projects should have to be completed in less amount of time to avoid less value of those assets to the business owner(s). Hence, failing to realize the uncertainty in projects could lead towards reiteration of the very same problem on other grounds as well. On the more severe scale, it can lead towards the loss of financial capital for the company (Atkinson et al., 2006).
Some of the most salient features of balanced matrix project organization are that it is highly targeted for achieving the perfect balance between project requirements and technology. Nonetheless, it has some disadvantages too that includes the project members within the team would have to become answerable to both functional manager as well as project manager thereby leading to a major degree of conflict in chain of command. Also, under those circumstances, the conflict between departments can grow much stronger because of sharing and managing those scarce resources. Also, while having so many heads making a single decision, it is certain that the project will suffer from delays because of inclusion of meetings on almost every management tier. In order to tackle all these problems, the organization should have to create motivation and develop a different incentive program that would become active after the development and successful completion of the project. Also, special remuneration should be offered to personnel participated in a project to boost their morale for future commitment (Delaney and Huselid, 1996).
All in all, the development of a completely new line of touring class motorcycles is surely a challenging job for the project manager as well as company’s executive. However, the challenges can easily be tackled using effective strategies and risk management techniques. The company should have to provide a better outlook for their employees for enhancing their commitment towards organization thereby making the project to be completed in the lesser amount of time than anticipated.
ReferencesAtkinson, R., Crawford, L., & Ward, S. (2006). Fundamental uncertainties in projects and the scope of project management. International journal of project management, 24(8), 687-698.Delaney, J. T., & Huselid, M. A. (1996). The impact of human resource management practices on perceptions of organizational performance. Academy of Management journal, 39(4), 949-969.Hughes, R. L., & Beatty, K. M. (2011). Becoming a strategic leader: Your role in your organization’s enduring success (Vol. 27). John Wiley & Sons.Newell, M. W., & Grashina, M. N. (2003). The project management question and answer book. AMACOM Div American Mgmt Assn.Srivastava, R. K., Fahey, L., & Christensen, H. K. (2001). The resource-based view and marketing: The role of market-based assets in gaining competitive advantage. Journal of management, 27(6), 777-802.
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