How AI is transforming Project Management

Helen Lovering
July 12, 20193 mins read

The rise of Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning over the last few years has been enormous. On a daily basis Alexa is in your living room, there is Gmail smart reply, Google robotic can call your hairdresser to arrange an appointment and of course next there will be self-driving cars on the roads. But how does this affect Project Management?

To stay competitive, more and more organisations across all industries are looking for opportunities to utilise AI by tapping into their data.

Inevitably, AI will become an essential part of every enterprise, in fact, 80 percent of businesses are investing in AI today.

AI Project Management

For example, Zurich Insurance Group is using intelligent bots to deal with personal injury claims. Otto, a German retailer adopted AI and ML to autonomously make operational decisions at a scale that humans cannot match.

Many people are concerned about the impact AI will have on job security and availability. A number of jobs which seem quite complex will be disrupted by widespread adoption of AI in 15 - 20 years, this includes: journalists, drivers, chefs, financial analysts and even lawyers.
While there will be 73 million jobs at risk of being replaced by 2030, fret not as new ones will be created. AI isn’t to be feared, the future for human employees may be improved by the adoption of AI to perform jobs. It may even be your best team member, especially for Project Managers.

So how could artificial intelligence, predictive analytics and machine learning potentially impact project delivery in the years to come?

1. Project Management - Risk Estimation

  • Throughout the life cycle, every project encounters a number of uncertainties and risks that can trigger a failure, which the project team should analyse and respond to based on their knowledge, experience and available tools.
  • The difficulty with the ongoing risk assessment can turn into a catastrophe if the team fails to identify threats on time -  but what if a sophisticated, self-learning machine could evaluate historical information, issue logs to come up with an enhanced risk rating model? 
  • Machine learning enables computers to use project information and advanced algorithms to predict results and determine the potential threats and vulnerabilities influencing your project.
  • Project Managers will save considerable time, money and resources through the implementation of AI.

2. Resource Management

  • As a Project Manager, you have to reassess the progress, timeframes and costs multiple times over the course of the project.
  • AI provides insight into the history of previous projects and can offer real-time resource management information. 
  • This will help to manage any additional resources or take people off the project if a disparity rises in the hours required versus projected availability.

My Takeaways

  • Artificial Intelligence can be a distinctive accelerator and game changer, and Project Managers should embrace the technology and leverage AI where possible. 
  • AI will assist, not replace, Project Managers, so that the Project Manager can spend more time on more value-adding activities while delegating many project management tasks to the intelligent machines.

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