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Project management is now recognized as an organizational capability and there are numerous generic maturity models providing one size fits all approaches to what is considered to be best practice. Both maturity models and best practices are problematic. Maturity models typically suggest that all firms must strive to progressively achieve prescribed levels of practice across the same range of best practices. But what constitutes best practice for whom and under what circumstances? If we look at an organization’s project management systems, although they may have similarities across firms, they are operating in different contexts, driven by different strategies. What may be best for some may not be best for others. The effect of different context and business strategies on focus and configuration of project management systems leads to the question: what configuration of organizational project management capability offers the best fit with specific markets and their strategic drivers? This paper presents results of research that begins to provide a basis for developing maturity and excellence models that are sensitive to context.
This document has been peer reviewed.