An investigation into the development of an effective benefits realisation process for healthcare infrastructure projects
, PhD thesis, University of Salford.
Traditionally, healthcare infrastructure programmes and projects determine their level of success mainly against cost, quality and time of delivery, and not on the degree to which benefits or impacts are delivered. Too often people have assumed that a programme or project will achieve certain benefits, without carrying out analysis to find out what users, partners and other stakeholders really value or how these benefits are to be achieved. They concentrate their efforts on achieving outputs, such as a new building, an Information Technology (IT) system, or a change to a service. By the time these goals are delivered, there is limited understanding of the specific anticipated benefits and limited ability to influence, or even track, their achievements.
Targeting clarification of impacts and benefits is emerging as a method to assist healthcare organisations to manage whole life cycle of programmes from development, construction to operations and facilities management. This was presented as an opportunity to investigate into the development of a Benefits Realisation (BeReal) process.
A constructive and case study research strategy was deployed for the investigation, development and validation of the BeReal process. A number of research methods such as workshops, observations and questionnaires were used to collect data for the research. A relevant literature review was conducted and included reviews into benefits management and realisation approaches and its satellite subjects, including programme and project management, stakeholder management, evaluation techniques etc. The literature review findings, discussions with healthcare practitioners and experts in the subject area as well as the author’s personal experiences were integrated with a number of case study findings to inform, develop and validate the BeReal process. The process consists of five phases, which consider the identification and use of benefits as the main driver for the delivery of healthcare infrastructure projects with a more predictable success outcome.
The main contribution of this research is in terms of presenting a methodology of investigating and developing a process that embraces a benefits realisation approach. The process is built upon integrating project management best practices and continuous improvement methods. It promotes knowledge flow down and sharing by managing stakeholders’ expectations throughout the change lifecycle, when planning and delivering infrastructure programmes.
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