The Four Benefits of Hiring a Professional Project Management Consulting Firm

projectmanagement

projectmanagement

 

Managing a multifaceted project can be a daunting task. The challenges that each project brings along with it can put the most experienced managers to the test. This is not to say that your in-house staff are lacking experience, on the contrary. Sometimes, a novel view onto a problem may be exactly what is needed to overcome it. Also, your most experienced staff are required elsewhere in the organization to run the day-to-day operations. Taking them off their assignments to manage a new project can spell chaos to the business at hand. Therefore, outsourcing your project management needs can be just the solution you need to ensure a successful project delivery without compromising the quality of your daily operations.

A professional project management consulting firm has experienced professional who can shed new light onto existing challenges. We have summarized the main benefits of outsourcing your project management needs in the points below:

  1. Directly address issues related to the project

When a company embarks on a high-risk project, it often causes management to recognize that a better project management expert is required. Consultants are often hired to address various project-related issues, such as: poor on-time performance (key dates are not met), unsatisfactory financial results (unnecessary expenses to meet deadlines), dysfunctional team dynamics (poor communication , internal issues and distraction) and complicated composition of teams (multilocation, language barriers).

By providing the appropriate methodology, project management training, resources, and technology, a project management consulting firm can help executives determine how to best utilize the resources available for the project.

 

  1. Covering a gap

Sometimes projects are launched without considering the experience of the delivery team members. By hiring an experienced project manager, you can ensure the availability of the necessary expertise to drive the project to a successful outcome regardless of the complexity, scale, and uniqueness of the project.

 

  1. Contribution of advanced management analysis

In many cases, senior management have difficulty evaluating project performance and making informed decisions simply because they do not have access to key project information. A specialized project management consultancy firm can provide the reports and analyses necessary to equip managers with key information about future obstacles, possible project difficulties, and potential resource constraints. When this type of information is incorporated as part of a more inclusive project management approach, the consultant can turn standard project information, a reactive overview of historical information, into a predictive analytics tool.

 

  1. Improve cost management

Hiring the right project management consulting firm can result in savings on the long run. One in six projects overrun their budget by 200% and suffer a schedule overrun of 70%. An experienced project manager can ensure avoidance of unsatisfactory financial results (unnecessary expenses to meet deadlines), which also ensures staying within the project’s execution plan.

 

A professional project management consulting firm can provide a combination of experience, knowledge, and advanced tools that are not immediately available in most companies. By combining these capabilities with an understanding of project management best practices, it is easy to see how the benefits of hiring a professional project management consulting firm can far outweigh the extra expenses. Therefore, if you want to guarantee the successful delivery of your projects and adhere to your budget and timeline, you should not hesitate in contacting a professional project management consulting firm such as H.A. Consultancies to help you with your next project.

For more information on our Project Management Consultancy Services, contact us now.

Where to Start with Mobile App Development?

We’ve all heard about the amazing success stories of mobile apps around the world. Uber, Careem, Talabat, Carriage, Instagram, WhatsApp, Snapchat… just to name a few. The required capital is minimal compared to the potential returns. Therefore, it is not surprising that many aspiring entrepreneurs out there would want to follow suit.

If you have an idea for a mobile app and are wondering where to start with the development, this article is for you.

First of all, let’s share some statistics.

  • Only 2.5% of companies complete their projects 100% successfully. (Gallup)
  • The average IT project overruns its budget by 66%. (McKinsey)
  • One in six IT projects overrun its budget by 200% and suffer a schedule overrun of 70%. (HBR)
  • 17% of IT projects can go so bad that they can threaten the very existence of the company (McKinsey)

The return on a successful mobile app may be appealing, however, the risks of failure are also very real. It would be a shame if you have a world-changing idea which never comes to light due to reasons which could have been avoided. Therefore, it is important to have a clear plan prior to the start of your mobile app development journey in order to minimize risks of failure.

The 10 Steps of Mobile App Development

 

 

  • Step 1: Write down your feature list
  • Step 2: Do the market research
  • Step 3: Identify the users/audience
  • Step 4: Identify the monetization strategy
  • Step 5: Create a rough sketch/wire frame
  • Step 6: Approach mobile app developers and get estimates
  • Step 7: Complete the UI/UX
  • Step 8: Get the app developed and tested
  • Step 9: Launch the app and market it
  • Step 10: Gather market response and prepare for the next phase

As you might have noticed from the list, developing the app is way down at Step 8. There are 7 steps that need to be executed perfectly before any piece of code is written. This may be a cumbersome task, however, it could spell the difference between becoming the next success story or just another statistic.

Moreover, once the app is developed, there are two more crucial steps that need to be conducted. Launching and marketing the app is just as important as the idea itself. It doesn’t matter how good your app is if your potential clients never heard of it.

Finally, improving the app. If your app was launched successfully and people do realize the benefit of using it, it won’t be surprising to have copycat apps out there trying to mimic your success. Case and point, Uber and Careem, or Talabat, Hungerstation, and Carriage. The best way to avoid losing market share is to make sure that your app is continuously improved to cater to the ever-changing customer demands. In other words, once you start your journey in mobile app development, it never ends.

H.A. Consultancies has helped several clients bring their mobile app idea into reality. It has also helped some to realize the fault in their plan and avoid considerable financial losses. For more information on our Mobile App Development Consultancy Services, feel free to contact us at any time:

info@haconsultancies.com

Tel: +973 17233747

How to Work Remotely Efficiently

work remotely

work remotely

 

COVID-19 has changed the world. Working remotely is merely one aspect of how we had to adapt. It is a solution that had to be implemented immediately and in a very short period of time. For companies that were not prepared beforehand, it was definitely a struggle.

This article aims to explain some of the steps, tools, and assets that need to be in place in order to ensure the most efficient transition to working from home and how this can actually increase productivity.

One of the biggest obstacles to overcome while working from home, or from anywhere other than your office, is the communication barrier. As the teams working from the office have their routine meetings, brainstorming sessions, and morning briefings, none of this seems possible while working remotely. Nevertheless, it can be done. All that is required are the right tools and know how.

There are essential things that need to be prepared prior to working remotely and, fortunately, technology has come a long way in a short period of time. Today, it’s easy to stay connected to your remote computers by having a stable VPN connection. This needs to be prepared and set up properly to allow the end users (the employees) to access the internal network/system of the company. Also, the employees need to have a computer/laptop to allow them to work remotely and access the network. Moreover, an adequate tool to communicate internally & externally that facilitates virtual meetings is necessary also to allow the employees conduct their meetings/conference calls. However, in order for all of this to work, a stable internet connection is required at both the company and the remote location.

Many companies noticed an increase in productivity from the employees working remotely. This may be due to any of the following reasons:

  • Improved flexibility: virtual communication tools make communication between computers in different time zones easier. Thanks to messaging services, you do not have to wait for a team member from the other side of the world to be available to send you important information.
  • Convenience: you do not have to bother finding a meeting place when you contact via remote communication. People can communicate from anywhere using their computer or mobile device (and Internet access), making it easy for impromptu meetings. There are even applications to record video chats, so people who cannot attend also have the possibility to see what was discussed in meetings.
  • Ease of staying connected: connecting with a teammate, supervisor, or external collaborator has never been easier. When you need to ask a quick question or send a document to a coworker, you can connect to them with a click of a button.

Of course, working remotely also has its downsides as well, such as:

  • More distractions: remote communication tools can be very annoying. Being constantly bombarded by company emails and chat groups can have a negative impact on productivity.
  • Technical difficulties/internet interruption: remote communication depends on technology. A hardware malfunction, a service interruption, or an unstable internet connection could cut communication lines for an extended period of time.

Difficulty in conveying ideas: sometimes it’s easier to explain an idea in a face to face meeting rather than a conference call or through an online chat. Some ideas just need the human interaction element to get across.

COVID-19: Vaccinate Your Company with ISO 22301 Standard

ISO 22301

ISO 22301

In times of crisis and unexpected events, we are required to maintain all our processes and procedures in an orderly manner to ensure the continuity of our business.

In this series of posts, we will attempt to explain how ISO helps companies overcome the COVID-19 crisis.

This series would not be complete without explaining more about the most relevant ISO standard to the situation at hand, the ISO 22301.

ISO 22301: Business continuity

ISO 22301 provides us with a continuity plan for unexpected events and ensures that documented procedures are in place that lead organizations to respond, recover, resume, and restore the predefined level of operation after any interruption.

The ISO 22301 standard is a good tool to implement and manage a Continuity Plan, since it is a way of detecting opportunities and improving the operational efficiency of our business nucleus.

With this standard, the internal operating structure of the company can be analyzed, which allows finding various opportunities for improvement, the elimination of which clearly minimizes the risks and costs of our entity.

About H.A. Consultancies

We are a company with more than 20 years of experience in the implementation of ISO Standards and effective management solutions for your organization:

Quality Systems – Information Security – Software Quality – Compliance

Environmental management – Occupational Safety – Food Safety – Operational Excellence

H.A. Consultancies’ team of professionals and experts in ISO certifications will help you achieve your goals by offering you the best consulting service.

 

 

 

COVID-19: Vaccinate Your Company with ISO 27001 Standard

ISO

ISO

Many companies are concerned about how this ongoing pandemic is affecting the continuity of their activities and threatening their very survival.

Most business owners are concerned with how to keep their companies afloat and are updating their current procedures to accommodate events as unfortunate as the one we are experiencing.

For companies that are already ISO certified, they already have the tools in place to combat external threats. For those who are not, it is not too late.

In this series of posts, we will attempt to explain how ISO helps companies overcome the COVID-19 crisis. In this post, we are going to shed light on the ISO 27001 standard concerned with information security.

ISO 27001: Information Security

With the invasion of cloud technologies, the ISO 27001 witnessed strong growth. With the implications of the Coronavirus Pandemic, this growth is going to become exponential.

Equipment safety, backups, information exchange, network access control, laptops and mobile communications, remote access, key management, data protection and privacy of personal information, business continuity plans – surely if in your company you are working remotely, all these elements have been placed on the table. These are some of the controls established by ISO 27001 and that companies that are already certified have implemented. Therefore, their transition to working remotely or another new way of operating has been easy for them.

In addition, with the amount of malicious information circulating through the different digital media on the Coronavirus, it is imperative to keep the information safeguarded and establish security protocols within the company.

To that end, the ISO 27001 standard allows the implementation of an information security management system as an indispensable tool to protect companies and organizations from threats and risks against information.

This standard allows companies to:

  • Identify risks
  • Manage risks
  • Minimize risks

The ISO 27001 is a standard that keeps the information of the company, customers and suppliers controlled and protected from any intrusion and possible cyber pirate or cyber-attack.

About H.A. Consultancies

We are a company with more than 20 years of experience in the implementation of ISO Standards and effective management solutions for your organization:

Quality Systems – Information Security – Software Quality – Compliance

Environmental management – Occupational Safety – Food Safety – Operational Excellence

H.A. Consultancies’ team of professionals and experts in ISO certifications will help you achieve your goals by offering you the best consulting service.

Bahrain’s Social Insurance – Part 4: One Size Does Not Fit All

pensions

pensions

Written by:
Munther Al-Arayedh, MBA, CPA

 

In 2018, we posted a series of articles discussing Bahrain’s Social Insurance dilemma. You can get up to speed by reading these articles:

Bahrain’s Social Insurance – Part 1: How Did We Get into This Mess?

Bahrain’s Social Insurance – Part 2: How Do We Get Out of This Mess?

Bahrain’s Social Insurance – Part 3: Complete Overhaul

This issue subsided for a while and has recently re-emerged, hence we believe it was important to revisit this topic and shed some light on the measures currently under debate.

3% Suspension

One of the most sensitive measures that has spurred a lot of contempt is the suspension of the 3% annual increase in pension salaries. The reason for this increase is to maintain the salary level of the pensioner in light of economic inflation. However, the economy is never in a constant state of inflation. It rather goes through cycles of inflation and deflation. Therefore, it might have been more appropriate to set the percentage according to the current inflation/deflation rate of the economy. Accordingly, a pensioner might get an increase in his salary one year and endure a decrease the next.

Retire at 60

Another measure that caused a lot of debate was the increase of the retirement age. The retirement age is now set firmly at 60 for men and women. The earliest a male employee would be able to retire according to the new measures is at 55 years old assuming that he would accept a 30% deduction in his pension salary (6% for each year he/she retires before the age of 60). If we look into this measure with a more critical eye, an employee who has worked at the age of 30 would be able to retire at the same age as an employee who would have worked at the age of 18. Sure, the pension salary would differ, but the retirement age would be the same. That does not seem fare.

One Size Fits All

To be honest, none of the measures under discussion would actually resolve the core issue which is the fact that the very structure of our Social Insurance Organization is flawed. It follows a “One Size Fits All” strategy towards providing its services which can be beneficial to some and detrimental to many.

In our article titled “Bahrain’s Social Insurance – Part 3: Complete Overhaul” we argued that the pension benefits in Bahrain, and indeed in the GCC, are very generous. Pension salaries do not cease by the passing away of the pensioner. In fact, pension payments are still made to widows and widowers, children up to the age of 21, children in full time education to the age of 26, children unable to earn a living, daughters that are unwed, fathers that were dependant on their deceased child, mothers that are divorced or widowed, brothers to the age of 21, sisters if unwed, and even grandchildren if their father is deceased. This adds multiple new dimensions to the pension plan which would make it difficult to forecast a viable contribution rate.

On the other hand, in case the employee was given the option of selecting the benefits that he wishes to extend to his family and in return set a contribution rate for himself according to these benefits, this would take a huge load off the pension fund and possibly even the employee. A participant who is an only child for instance would not need to have the benefit of pension payments made to his brother or sister and conversely, would not need to pay the additional percentage of contribution affiliated with extending such a benefit. An employee who would like to retire at the age of 45 would probably accept paying a significantly higher contribution than an employee who does not have a problem retiring at the age of 65.

The idea we are proposing here is that the Social Insurance Organization should abandon the “One Size Fits All” policy and try to provide more tailored solutions to the public.

 

COVID-19: Vaccinate Your Company with ISO 9001 Standard

ISO9001

ISO9001

Not too long ago, many organizations considered ISO and quality management systems as just another bureaucracy, a mandatory requirement to work with global clients, a marketing element, or merely a stamp that looked good on their documents.

However, today, amidst this raging Coronavirus Pandemic, it is these same companies that are dusting off and reviewing their Continuity Plans, Communication Plans, and work procedures or remembering how they evaluated performance indicators to have measurable elements of how this crisis will affect them.

The tools of ISO management systems are at our disposal in times of crisis and it is a good time to put them in play.

In this series of posts, we will attempt to explain how ISO helps companies overcome the COVID-19 crisis. We will start with the most famous ISO standard, the 9001.

ISO 9001: Quality Management

ISO 9001 establishes change management processes that are required in the face of any external event such as COVID-19. With ISO 9001, we will already have tools in place to plan changes, considering their purpose and consequence, the integrity of the quality management system, the availability of resources and the allocation of responsibilities.

Another important contribution that has been revealed these days is the need for a Communication Plan. ISO 9001 certified companies already have a process to determine internal and external communications that include what, when, to whom, how and who communicates and therefore helps them manage how to give information to different stakeholders.

Other important ISO 9001 tools that we can highlight are:

  • Internal and external context analysis tools.
  • Having identified the stakeholders and their needs and expectations.
  • The identification of risks and opportunities of the processes of the organization (now is a good time to review and reassess)
  • The identification of customer requirements and risks that may affect the conformity of our products and services.
  • Processes already systematized to address risks and opportunities.
  • The infrastructure management and information technology and communication necessary for the operation of processes.
  • Performance analysis and evaluation tools that will allow us to assess the impact of this crisis on our operations.
  • Improvement tools such as non-conformities and corrective actions that establish mechanisms to detect incidents in this new way of operating and be able to correct it as soon as possible.

It is clear that, for the continuity of our business, these elements are key to the change of processes that must be carried out within organizations and provides a way of quality management of each change process, even if it is only temporary.

About H.A. Consultancies

We are a company with more than 20 years of experience in the implementation of ISO Standards and effective management solutions for your organization:

Quality Systems – Information Security – Software Quality – Compliance

Environmental management – Occupational Safety – Food Safety – Operational Excellence

H.A. Consultancies’ team of professionals and experts in ISO certifications will help you achieve your goals by offering you the best consulting service.