25 million euros wasted, project failed

Yet another big IT project in dutch government failed. A 25 million euro project was cancelled. Lots of press and discussions:

Why did they spend 25 million before declaring the project failed? Shouldn’t they be able to detect earlier that what is being build isn’t going to help the users? Or that it’s going to cost a lot more than estimated?

Most government projects are using Prince 2, a project management method created by a British government institute. It looks like this isn’t working, for whatever reason. Maybe they’re not using it right, maybe it isn’t the right tool to create succesful products.

Mary Beijleveld recently pointed me towards another method created by a British governement institute: System Error. This approach advises to use Agile methods for project management.

Looks like a good time to read it.

As far as i’m concerned the biggest problem is not understanding the difference between product development and product manufacturing, and the different types of management you need for these two.

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