Application of Project Controls in Construction vs. IT

Authored by: Timothy Deane Mather

Based on the author’s expertise working on projects from both the construction industry and the IT industry, this paper attempts to answer two questions: what is the current application of project management tools, knowledge, and techniques in the information technology industry? How does it compare to another project centric industry such as construction? With these questions in mind the author interviewed senior information technology executives and experienced construction executives to learn how project management is conducted in two different industries when managing both discrete projects and interdependent projects (programs). The paper presents a synthesis of information collected o the interviews with a focus on (1) project definition of scope, concentrating on functional breakdown in the IT field vs. the work breakdown structure (wbs) in the construction industry and (2) project planning and control methods, contrasting different approaches toward project management.