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Internal vs External Project Management – Which One is Right For You?

February 17, 2016

IPM or EPMInternal project management (IPM) and external project management (EPM) are two different sides of the same coin, so to speak. Both help a company get things done within a set timeframe, budget, and specifications. There are some who believe that an IPM is better than an EPM, and there are also others who would rather go for an EPM over an IPM. Which of these two should you trust with the work that needs to get done? Is an IPM better than an EPM, or vice versa?

Let us first understand what the difference is between the two, and what advantages you can get from either. In-house or internal project management is when you get people from within the company to handle the monitoring of the projects of your business. These people come from your existing manpower pool and are handpicked to handle the management of projects due to the skill sets and capabilities that they have. External project management, on the other hand, is when you hire people from the outside to do the same thing, but on a project basis. They are often experts at managing projects because technically, that is what they are marketing themselves as.

Now, when it comes to figuring out which is better for your business, you first need to find out what the strengths and weaknesses of each are. You need to weigh the pros and cons of each to determine which type of project manager is ideal for your upcoming projects. It has been noted that IPM know the culture of the company, so there is a lower chance of conflicts between staff member occurring, as opposed to having an EPM working on some of the company’s projects. This is just one thing though, so to get to the nitty-gritty, let us enumerate the benefits of each.

Internal Project Management

IPMs already know what the company’s goals and objectives are, which may make them try harder to get things done. They also have ample knowledge about the company’s operations, making it easier for them to manage and execute the projects that are given to them to handle.

IPMs don’t present the company with the possibility of data leaks as much since they are aware of the company’s policies and processes regarding these security issues.

They take care not to create situations that will jeopardize the company that they are working in therefore they try their best to ensure that things are done without jeopardizing the company’s bottom line.

External Project Management

EPMs are usually more experienced and have the kind of skill set that companies look for in project managers. This is because this is their specialization and they sell themselves to those who need them by highlighting these particular skills and expertise.

They are more objective than IPMs, and when decisions need to be made for the sake of the project, they would not have any qualms about such decisions as long as the objectives of the project are met.

EPMs are more focused on what they need to do since they do not have to worry about issues that occur internally. They are not exposed to and affected by company politics, making them more capable of getting these projects done according to defined guidelines and expectations.

It has also been said that IPMs are more reactive in how they handle projects, while EPMs are more proactive. The decision to go with one or the other is basically dependent on what the company expects, and other factors like cash flow, lack of qualified personnel within, and the general lack of manpower. Either way, both types do have their pros and cons and it is up to you to decide which one you feel will work best for your company.

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