Center for Executive Education (CEE)


Post Graduate Diploma in Project Management


Syed Ahsan Mustaqeem

Project Type

PGD Project Report

Executive Summary

The success of a project especially in the oil and gas sector confronts many challenges. For the attainment of success, one needs to identify the factors contributing towards this success of a project. When the focus moves on to the Oil and Gas sector then it is of utmost importance to understand that the Oil and Gas business in a country heavily depends upon upstream (the processing and purification of raw natural gas), midstream (gathering the raw resource and transporting it via pipeline, railway, or tanker truck to refineries) and downstream (the marketing and distribution of crude oil and natural gas-derived items) segments of the sector. These segments play a vital role in the success or failure of an oil and gas business. Literature is evident that upstream and midstream segments have been under rigorous research to find out the factors contributing to the success of a project or a business, but the downstream segment has not been under extensive research, moreover differences in stakeholder expectations of project success, the idea of project success and performance indicators remains vague. This gap has created an opportunity for research to be conducted in this regard.

The prime goal of this research is to find out the critical success factors in the downstream segment of the oil and gas sector in Pakistan from a stakeholder’s perspective and to rank them according to their impact on the project’s success. In this research is Success is defined as ‘completion of a project’ underlying the Main Factors along with its sub-factors. The aim of this study is four-folds. Firstly, it was to identify and check the critical success factors that have been previously studied in the western setting, in the oil and gas sector in Pakistan. Secondly, the study divides these into different categories, while ranking them according to their relative importance on basis of data collected. Thirdly the study has also identified sub-factors in each factor and ranked them as well according to the impact they give on a project's success or failure, this part of the study has provided a very detailed insight to consider when success is the core goal to be achieved. And lastly, this study helps in contributing to the literature that how and which of the critical success factors are important in Pakistani settings when the focus is on the oil and gas sector (downstream).

Building up on the existing literature, this research has utilized Project-related elements, business and work-environment-related components, client-related features, project management factors, design-team-related factors, contractor-related variables, and project-manager-related variables as input factors for project success, with further division of sub factors.

The data collection was done through snowball sampling and the representatives of the downstream companies were chosen as the respondents for this study. The responses were collected through self-administered questionnaires. After omitting inappropriate responses, the study utilized a sample of 100 respondents. The data analysis has been done by using the Relative Importance Index (RII) and the Analytical Hierarchy Process (AHP). The RII technique helps is identifying the relative importance of all the variables or factors being studied. Whereas AHP techniques enable the user to organize, analyze and make complex decisions based on all the available alternatives and relating to the goals to be achieved. In this research, these techniques helped to identify the factors impacting majorly and hence set the priorities accordingly.

The results revealed that the highest-ranking category among all is the ‘supervision consultant’. Furthermore, the Project sponsor and Regulator categories have the highest ranking of Business and Work Environment-related factors. Similarly, the Design consultant and Project Management consultant categories have the highest ranking of Project-related factor, Client Related Factor secures top rank in the categories of supervision consultant and Construction Contractor The subfactors like; Planning monitoring and controlling mechanism falls under Project Management Factor and has highest ranking. The factors in each category have been ranked according to their relative significance.

In the end, it has been recommended that before setting up a new downstream oil and gas business, professional are requested to have a detailed insight about the factors that contribute to the success or if ignored becomes the prime or core reason for failure. Furthermore, since this study is done in Pakistan therefore it presents useful insights for the managers or industry experts in this country and alike. As for future research direction, it will be contributing to the literature body, if this research is done in other developing countries like Pakistan. We would also recommend commencing such a study in oil-enriched as well as oil-deprived countries to have a diverse range of data in different countries.

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