PROJECT MANAGEMENT AND MAINTENANCE IN LOCAL GOVERNMENT AREAS

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ABSTRACT

The research examined factors of effective maintenance management in the public sector. Data gathering and analysis involved personal interview and questionnaire. The research hypothesis was subjected to test and analysis using chi-square (x2). The tested hypothesis disclosed that funds were the key to project success and sustainability. A number of constraints as well as economic benefits of the study were highlighted. Recommendations from the study indicated that projects and facility maintenance should be tailored to the size of revenue realizable, maintenance implications should be considered along with project conception and the need for government sound policies in this regard. Deductions from the study clearly show that when the required wherewithal for managing and maintaining projects/facilities are provided and properly carried out by competent managers, an outcome of satisfaction and drastic reduction in environmental accidents in our society could be assured.

CHAPTER ONE

GENERAL INTRODUCTION

1.1  INTRODUCTION

Project management is an outgrowth of the need to develop and produce projects in the shortest possible time. Project management is necessary in complex projects in order to provide a unity of purpose and to establish a focal point for pulling together the cooperative efforts of literally dozens of relatively autonomous organizations or bodies. It is particularly useful wherever considerable coordination is required between several parties.

On the other hand, facility maintenance is not only valuable for the sake of longevity of the life of machines or other productive facilities but also it serves as a safety valve for the operators of the equipment. According to Priel (1994), the maintenance of plant and equipment in working order is essential to achieve total quality, reliability and efficient working. The best project or equipment will not work satisfactorily unless it is cared for, and cost of a breakdown in the system can be very high, not only in financial terms but also in poor staff morale and bad relations with customers. The people and materials must also be maintained, through training, motivation, healthcare and even entertainment for the people, and proper storage and handling of materials.

Kerzner (2000) defines project management as the planning, scheduling, and controlling of series of integrated tasks such that the objectives of the project are achieved successfully and in the best interest of the project’s stakeholders. Therefore, project management is an important factor for determining project success. Where management is poor, there is failure. There is no project that can provide the expected results without proper and sufficient management. Sound project management is indeed a key factor in achieving the desired goals and objectives of a project.

There are many factors that affect sustainability and continuous derivation of services from projects long after their completion, perhaps the most important is the maintenance of projects or the facilities therein. Maintenance in this context refers to the act of keeping the productive facilities in good condition, so that the optimal expected performance or output of the facilities remains about the same as when the facilities were initially put to use.

Maintenance of productive facilities is so important for any kind of organisation because the alternative – the replacement of equipment

– may be very costly financially and in terms of other requirements. In view of the limited resources of organizations and especially, Local Government Areas, the desire to acquire new facilities from time to time may be strong, but the capacity may be low.

1.2     STATEMENT OF PROBLEMS

Recently, there have been a series of environmental accidents such as air disasters, collapsed buildings, bridges etc in our cities in the various Local Government Areas. These structures and infrastructures were designed to have a life span of over 30 years but they are neglected to decompose rapidly beyond repair because of sub-standard materials used or due to poor/lack of maintenance.

The main problem of this study is centred around inefficiency of project management and facility maintenance. This work seeks to find solution to the problem.

(1)        How the Local Government Area recognizes the need for project Management and facility maintenance.

(2)         How projects are to be properly implemented and supervised.

(3)        How the administrators and politicians appreciate the essential elements of project management and facility maintenance.

(4)        How inadequate funds affect the project management and facility maintenance in the Local Government.

(5)        How project execution is to be approved and monitored by Government.

PROJECT MANAGEMENT AND MAINTENANCE IN LOCAL GOVERNMENT AREAS