2021 Project Management Predictions

What will happen in 2021 in the area of project management and information technology (IT)? Here are some predictions from the people of Planview. They talk about planning cycles, The gap between “IT” decisions and “Business” decisions, small data and AI/ML.

2021 Project Management Predictions

Planning cycles will condense as companies see the benefit of responsive planning required during COVID

“The biggest piece of advice I would give companies as we head into 2021 is to watch out for ‘strategy atrophy.’ The half-life of your company’s strategy is no more than one quarter – meaning that each quarter that goes creates further and further disconnection between your strategic plan and the reality in fast-changing markets. In ordinary circumstances, companies doing annual planning would only risk three quarters of this strategic disconnect. But the pandemic and economic uncertainty has delayed the typical end-of-year planning that many companies would ordinarily do in Q4 2020. Many companies are pressing pause on that to see how things unfold. That means companies whose last annual planning cycle was Q4 2019 are heading into Q1 2021 with strategy that has atrophied for more than a year. And when Q1 inevitably turns to Q2 and Q3 of 2021, those companies who are waiting for more certainty in the world will have strategies that have atrophied for almost two years since their last real strategic planning process. The risks of outdated strategy pile on top of one another with each day that goes by. Companies need to get into shorter, more frequent planning cycles as we head into 2021, and they need PI planning processes that will work in a world where teams will continue to be social distanced for the foreseeable future.” –Patrick Tickle, Chief Product Officer at Planview

The gap between “IT” decisions and “Business” decisions will nearly disappear as companies accelerate their digital transformation.”

“For decades, companies have been focused on the wrong problem when it comes to technology and their business. For too long, the discussion has been about how to ‘align’ IT with the rest of the business, which places technology in a separate, lesser silo. That is a fundamentally flawed view and it leaves companies vulnerable to market disruption. We need to break down those walls and stop talking about alignment. In fact, the word ‘alignment’ should be deleted from companies’ vocabulary because it’s killing their businesses. Companies need to move beyond endless, futile talk about alignment and re-wire their businesses in ways that eliminate those siloes.” –Patrick Tickle, Chief Product Officer at Planview

“Small Data” and AI/ML will be a secret weapon for companies to drive competitive advantage

“Big Data has gotten all of the headlines when it comes to the impact of AI on business, but 2021 will be the year when ‘Small Data’ emerges as a secret weapon for companies. Small Data AI gives business decision makers important insights that are derived from very small data sets – using the probability mathematics that has proven so valuable in fields such as weather forecasting, reliability engineering, epidemiology and even political projections. Companies who begin applying Small Data AI to critical functions such as product development will be able to dramatically reduce risk, accelerate speed to market, deliver more successful products and services to customers, and make smarter decisions about which initiatives to continue and which to stop investing in. AI can deliver highly-accurate projections to executives, even when very few data points are available about projects across the organization’s portfolio of products and services in development. Companies that incorporate Small Data AI into their toolkit will have an enormous competitive advantage.” –Dr. Murray Cantor, Chief Data Scientist at Planview