Target benefits such as “reduced operational costs” are project goals that can contribute to the long-term improvement of organizational performance following project completion. Setting effective target benefits is critical because it supports project investment decisions, clear projec  management direction, and thereby enhanced project and organizational performance. Based on goal setting theory, we present three studies to develop and validate a scale to measure effective target benefits. The proposed scale is comprised of three dimensions – specificity (e.g., specific target values), attainability (e.g., the capacity to realize the target benefits), and comprehensiveness (e.g., reflect the views of key stakeholders). This scale can be used by senior managers to assess proposed projects’ target benefits, contributing to more informed project investment decisionmaking and the subsequent benefit management process. Theoretically, it can also be used as an instrument to facilitate theory development in the fields of project benefit management, strategy implementation, and organizational performance.

Ofer Zwikael  Ying-Yi Chih  Jack R. Meredith

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