The Growing Role of Blockchain in Project Management

Project Management Tools and The Blockchain

Project managers and project management offices (PMOs) generally use a wide range of tools to balance project tasks, timelines, and budgets. There are many different tools available to help project managers in managing their projects effectively and efficiently. Examples of these tools have been in the form of the wide range of software solutions for planning and communication such as Microsoft Project to manage detailed lists of tasks, budgets, and timelines 

Project managers are responsible for a wide range of processes as projects evolve from inception to execution. Across all the project phases, project managers utilize different tools to plan and communicate with different stakeholders. Increasingly tools are emerging that blockchain in ways of growing relevance. These applications spread from commercial to humanitarian and show growing promise to drive changes in utilization across a wide range of industries and markets. This article was originally drafted as an academic paper and has been slightly reworked in examining some of the ways that blockchain technologies are currently being used and how these emerging applications impact the field of project management in their current and future potential uses. In looking to the future of project management, we can expect to see more innovation being driven in some way by utilization of the blockchain, with the implications driving potential for improvements in resource efficiencies, communications transparency, process monitoring and reporting, artificial intelligence driven insights, automated workflows, and secure authenticated transactions online including automated payments among other areas. Improvements in transparency, security, and efficiency through automation can be expected as implementation of blockchain and smart contract solutions becomes more widespread.

Blockchain is of relevance to the field of project management in the way it stands to impact the tools available to project managers. From a project control and assessment perspective, the blockchain can provide real-time information to project managers throughout the project lifecycle while helping support the project manager in actively monitoring project performance across areas of quality control, timeline, and financial costs. As we can see through recent advancements in the range of blockchain applications being utilized, the implications of the expansion of these technologies stands to be disruptive to the way projects are operated and the way stakeholders are connected on a global level. For project managers, successfully leveraging the foundations of blockchain technology can help support objectives such as delivering transparency in stakeholder communications, managing data security, ensuring business compliance, providing real-time reporting, and the potential for automation of key processes through smart contracts. The implications of expanded use of blockchain technologies stand to disrupt markets and changes the way business and individuals operate. Overall, this paper aims to highlight some of the unique ways emerging applications are utilizing the blockchain along with areas for future opportunity based on the inherent nature of the blockchain itself. 


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