http://www.engineeringnews.co.za
  SEARCH
Login
R/€ = 14.20Change: 0.17
R/$ = 11.58Change: 0.07
Au 1198.59 $/ozChange: 4.13
Pt 1200.50 $/ozChange: 3.00
 
 
Note: Search is limited to the most recent 250 articles. Set date range to access earlier articles.
Where? With... When?








Start
 
End
 
 
And must exclude these words...
Close Main Search
Close Main Login
My Profile News Alerts Newsletters Logout Close Main Profile
 
Agriculture   Automotive   Chemicals   Competition Policy   Construction   Defence   Economy   Electricity   Energy   Environment   ICT   Metals   Mining   Science and Technology   Services   Trade   Transport & Logistics   Water  
What's On Press Office Tenders Suppliers Directory Research Jobs Announcements Contact Us
 
 
 
RSS Feed
Article   Comments   Other News   Research   Magazine  
 
 
Jul 20, 2012

Consulting company recommends discipline-orientated project management to industry

Back
Engineering|Expertise|Africa|Consulting|GIBB Group|Packaging|PROJECT|Project Management|Projects|Systems|Africa|South Africa|Building|Discipline-orientated Project Management|Packaging|Project Management|Service|Systems|Value Chain|Infrastructure|Power|Richard Vries|Information Technology
Engineering|Expertise|Africa|Consulting|Packaging|PROJECT|Project Management|Projects|Systems|Africa||Building|Packaging|Service|Systems||Infrastructure|Power||
engineering|expertise|africa-company|consulting-company|gibb-group|packaging-company|project|project-management|projects|systems-company|africa|south-africa|building|discipline-orientated-project-management|packaging|project-management-industry-term|service|systems|value-chain|infrastructure|power|richard-vries|information-technology
© Reuse this



Consulting engineering company GIBB Group CEO Richard Vries says the company’s discipline-orientated project management has given it a competitive edge in the engineering industry.

“We focus purely on developing and managing engineering-related projects, as this is where our expertise lies. Our experience and expertise in this area have put us in a strong competitive position, given our understanding of the full value chain of a project,” he states.

Vries notes that discipline-orientated project management has also prevented the company from being affected by the shortage of skilled project managers in the country.

“It is our way of mitigating the challenge as well as the problem that comes with it – not meeting client expectations. We hire employees with years of experience who have worked their way up in the engineering industry.

“If we are hiring a project manager for a power station project, for example, we ensure the person has experience in that particular discipline. Project management at GIBB is not simply about administering software – it is about understanding the value chain of the entire process,” he says.

Vries says that problems arise when companies hire nondiscipline project managers.

“When a project manager is hired to manage a type of project he or she has never managed before, problems arise. For example, hiring an information technology project manager to manage the building of a dam will result in the person not knowing exactly what to do. He or she will then rely on the software, or other people, to try to get by,” he explains.

Vries states that discipline-orientated project management should be a solution not only for GIBB, but also for the rest of the industry.

“When hiring a project manager, companies must ask applicants what experience they have in that particular field [which empowers them] to know what needs to happen on site.

“It is not only about the project management qualification; it is about discipline-related experience as well,” he stresses.

Other Challenges
Meanwhile, GIBB says it faces challenges other than skills shortages.

“The biggest problem we face is managing timeframes and budgets, as projects in the engineering discipline tend to be large scale.

“Time and budget management are probably the most important criteria for our clients and large projects make it a huge challenge to ensure we deliver what is promised within the allocated time and budget,” says Vries.

Scoping and packaging the project is another challenge.

“Take the building of a dam, for example. There are so many unknown elements when the project starts. You can never, with absolute accuracy, predict what you might find when digging the tunnel or what other unexpected challenges may arise.

“This makes scoping the project and the budget another challenge for us. This is where our experience in the industry comes in. We can rely on past experience and expertise to help us face the challenges and ensure our client is satisfied,” he says.

Further, Vries points out that GIBB’s clients, particularly outside South Africa, are often also faced with funding challenges.

“The need is there to build the infrastructure but the funds are not.

“On the other hand, we see a lot of financiers wanting to fund infrastructure projects. The challenge for us is to bring the two together,” he explains.

This is an area where he feels the company is develop- ing strong capabilities and expertise.

“We have the industry knowledge to tell financiers where they can spend the money and we can foster the relationship to benefit our clients as well,” he says.

Industry Importance
Vries emphasises the importance of project management in the political stability of a country.

“Project management plays a key role in service delivery. A lack of service delivery leads to political instability. We have seen it in our own country.

“We need more project man- agers who understand this role and who can deliver, so that when the politicians make promises, they are promises that can be delivered on,” he says.

Experience, task orienta- tion, strong commercial orientation, industry knowledge and extensive knowledge of project-management delivery techniques are Vries’s criteria for a successful project manager.

“At GIBB, we have a structured process that our project managers must go through to become a project leader or project director. This ensures they are sufficiently trained and experienced,” he says.

Future Plans
Vries says the company is strengthening and developing its project-management sys- tems and procedures for large projects.

“We are aiming to develop our software, internal quality controls and other systems into a real science. With large projects, the work can become very complicated. There are ways and means of monitoring and managing a project in a simpler way than what we are currently doing. We want to find those ways and means.

“We also plan to develop the human capabilities in the company by improving the technical and project-management skills of our people. We also continue to recruit top engineers and project man- agers from all over the world to come on board with us,” he says.

Edited by: Chanel de Bruyn
© Reuse this Comment Guidelines (150 word limit)
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Other Project Management News
ARNOUT VAN HAARLEM A project management company must thoroughly understand the needs of the client
A project management company must thoroughly understand the needs of the client before it can successfully manage an engineering and construction project on behalf of the client, says engineering and construction company Fluor South Africa project director Arnout van...
JEFF SHAW The project management industry is cyclical in nature
The South African project management industry is currently not thriving because the slow pace of infrastructure investments is negatively impacting the industry, professional services firm KPMG infrastructure and major projects director Jeff Shaw says. Although...
MINING IT The beneficiation of resources is a complex sequence of events
Project management is useful to the mining industry, as it organises a team of specialists, such as geologists, environmental specialists, mining engineers and processing specialists, who need to collaborate to successfully complete projects, says process engineering...
More
 
 
Latest News
China appears to have been routinely underestimating output from its sprawling steel sector, with official figures for last year alone 40-million tonnes below a key industry estimate - an amount equivalent to Germany's entire annual production. Beijing has vowed to...
Lumwana, Zambia
Canada’s Barrick Gold Corp will suspend operations at its Lumwana copper mine, in Zambia’s Northwestern province, after the country enacted legislation that raised the royalty rate on openpit mining operations from 6% to 20%. TSX- and NYSE-listed Barrick, the world’s...
The Labour Court in Johannesburg has set aside the 2011-2014 metal sector wage agreement, the National Employers' Association of SA (Neasa) said on Thursday. The 2011-2014 wage deal was the result of an agreement between the Steel and Engineering Industries...
More
 
 
Recent Research Reports
Liquid Fuels 2014 - A review of South Africa's Liquid Fuels sector (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Liquid Fuels 2014 Report examines these issues, focusing on the business environment, oil and gas exploration, the country’s feedstock supplies, the development of South Africa’s biofuels industry, fuel pricing, competition in the sector, the...
Water 2014: A review of South Africa's water sector (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Water 2014 report considers the aforementioned issues, not only in the South African context, but also in the African and global context, and examines the issues of water and sanitation, water quality and the demand for water, among others.
Defence 2014: A review of South Africa's defence industry (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Defence 2014 report examines South Africa’s defence industry, with particular focus on the key participants in the sector, the innovations that have come out of the sector, local and export demand, South Africa’s controversial multibillion-rand...
Road and Rail 2014: A review of South Africa's road and rail infrastructure (PDF report)
Creamer Media’s Road and Rail 2014 report examines South Africa’s road and rail transport system, with particular focus on the size and state of the country’s road and rail network, the funding and maintenance of these respective networks, and the push to move road...
Real Economy Year Book 2014 (PDF Report)
This edition drills down into the performance and outlook for a variety of sectors, including automotive, construction, electricity, transport, steel, water, coal, gold, iron-ore and platinum.
Real Economy Insight: Automotive 2014 (PDF Report)
This four-page brief covers key developments in the automotive industry over the past 12 months, including an overview of South Africa’s automotive market, trade figures, production and the policies influencing the sector.
 
 
 
 
 
This Week's Magazine
South Africa remains an important manufacturing and export platform for Ford Motor Company, says executive chairperson Bill Ford. However, he adds that other countries on the continent are “becoming interesting”, and that the US carmaker is casting its net wider for...
TO BE PHASED INTO SERVICE The first MeerKAT dish, with another 63 to come
Germany’s Max-Planck-Society (MPG) and the Max-Planck-Institute for Radio Astronomy (MPlfR) are investing €11-million (about R150-million) into South Africa’s MeerKAT radio telescope array programme. The money will be used to design, build and install S-band radio...
Infrastructure spend in sub-Saharan Africa will grow from $70-billion in 2013 to $180-billion by 2025, says PwC capital projects and infrastructure Africa leader Jonathan Cawood. This is one of the findings of PwC’s Capital Projects & Infrastructure report on East...
Private-owned defence and aerospace manufacturer Paramount Group and the Ichikowitz Family Foundation unveiled its Anti-Poaching Skills and K9 Training Academy in Magaliesburg last month.
MATT BARKER Wireless networks should enable users to engage and must provide relevant information to them based on their activity and location
The inclusion of Bluetooth to provide sub-three meter accuracy and heightened functionality for users is one of the ways to change existing wireless networks into engagement networks. An engagement network differs from common wireless networks in that it enables the...
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Alert Close
Embed Code Close
content
Research Reports Close
Research Reports are a product of the
Research Channel Africa. Reports can be bought individually or you can gain full access to all reports as part of a Research Channel Africa subscription.
Find Out More Buy Report
 
 
Close
Engineering News
Completely Re-Engineered
Experience it now. Click here
*website to launch in a few weeks