There are many problems with government ICT projects

by One magazineVision24/02/2016

There are many problems with government ICT projects
At the KU Leuven ‘Instituut voor de Overheid’ () Lies Van Cauter has studied the management of government ICT projects of the past four years. Her doctoral thesis shows that many ICT projects in Belgium are not brought to a successful conclusion. The causes are often obvious, but are not noticed or are ignored.

Classic mistakes
End users are insufficiently involved in a project, government services lack technical knowledge for follow-up, little is learned from existing errors, etc. “These are problems that seem obvious when you hear them, but they do keep recurring,” contends Lies Van Cauter. “You start an ICT project quite well prepared, but when enthusiasm predominates, it often leads to high-risk, hasty decisions.” One solution she cites is to subject such projects to an external audit.

Project fatigue
Project fatigue often arises from the very beginning because of a previous bad experience. In large ICT projects it is difficult to keep everyone satisfied. Lies Van Cauter: “As a project leader you must design something that works both for the city of Antwerp and for a municipality like Herstappe. In the city there is a well-developed ICT department. In a small municipality everything ICT-related is often left to a half-time employee. So it’s logical that not everyone jumps on the bandwagon equally enthusiastically. The project leader must carefully consider the various entry levels.”

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