Rescuing IT Projects

Oct 1, 2014 6:03:00 PM

"It's not that they can't see the solution. They can't see the problem." - G.K. Chesterton

According to the Standish Group, a successful project must be completed on time, on budget and deliver the promised quality.

Of the many Standish Group reports published since 1994, two of the top five causes for failed IT projects have been given as:

  • > Incomplete Requirements
  • > Lack of User Involvement

Now that we have identified these two causes for failed projects, let’s examine what can be done. We could look at the project from a proactive or a reactive perspective but as the title of the blog is “Rescuing IT Projects,” the assumption is that we are looking back on faults/incidents that have occurred

We will be adopting a reactive approach to examine what has gone wrong and how it can be best fixed using the simplest, quickest, safest, and surest method. The key is to use a structured and logical approach to determine causes for project problems accurately and ensure the correct actions are taken.

The KEPNERandFOURIE™ toolset provides us with a number of processes that we could apply to help resolve the problem but one of the more important areas at the outset is adopting a Problem Solving Process that is intuitive. The table below represents a scaled down version of one of the KEPNERandFOURIE™ processes, CauseWise, which is used to help accurately determine faults or incidents in the shortest possible time.


The trick of course, is to have access to all the right people that should be able to supply the answers, ensure you have the concerned stakeholders available and if not in the same room to be able to access them. The second element and just as important is to push for a detailed and complete answer; don’t be happy with the first answer you get, it may be incomplete or not in enough detail. Don’t be afraid to ask “Can you be more specific?” or “I am going to need more detail than that?”

It is important that you are confident in your approach and have faith in the process - It works!

Learn more about Thinking Dimensions' Project Rescue:

Learn More

John Hudson

Written by John Hudson

London, UK | Partner of Thinking Dimensions Global
Mr Hudson focuses on the delivery and support of the RCA suite of KEPNERandFOURIE™ products with particular emphasis within the IT environment. He draws on almost 20 years of experience within the IT industry in the UK and Southern Africa. His particular strengths relate to the development and refining of products and content specific to client needs.


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