KPMG advises that NZ businesses need to embrace change
Survey shows two-thirds of Kiwi projects fail
13 April 2017
Advances in technology are rapidly changing the way that companies do business, and as such organisations are finding
themselves having to respond faster and be more agile in the way projects are managed. A survey of New Zealand’s private
and public sector project management professionals, senior executives and business representatives, released today,
looks into the project management profession and shows there is room for improvement.
KPMG’s Project Management Survey 2017 revealed that around two-thirds of projects undertaken in New Zealand are failing. The survey showed only 29 per cent
of projects are delivered on budget, 21 per cent of projects are delivering on benefits and 33 per cent meet original
goals or business objectives.
Gina Barlow, Director in the Advisory team at KPMG New Zealand says that while the survey results may seem discouraging,
they present New Zealand organisations with an opportunity to embrace new ways of working to increase their performance.
“The survey shows that current project management methods are struggling to provide efficient project delivery, so there
is a need for project management to take a big step closer to business strategy and agile project management this year.”
The survey shows that the number and complexity of projects organisations are completing has risen, with 40 per cent of
organisations completing more than 30 projects a year.
“We see that organisations have more projects, less time, and change is constant, so ensuring that change management
activities are integrated with project management activities is important to achieve desired results and planned
“Interestingly, despite project failure rates 61 per cent of organisations feel project success rates have improved over
the last two years, showing a disconnect between how well organisations think they are managing their projects, and
The survey also highlighted a skills shortage in the project management profession. The survey found the skills project
managers were most lacking in included: leading change in the organisation, managing conflict, political smarts,
resolving grey issues and communications skills.
“A lack of skilled project managers, an aging workforce (60 per cent of Project Management Institute members are over 40
years old), merging technologies, a lack of training of new talent and existing shortage of skills supply is a concern
for organisations and is also contributing the failure results we’ve seen in the survey.
“There is a need for organisations to take a strategic approach to talent management, providing for the future by
creating suitable career paths and investing in developing talent to ensure project delivery capabilities do not impact
the outcomes from strategic initiatives.
“It is no longer enough to focus on talent hiring and development for those who only have technical project management
skills,” says Gina.