Across Information Technology industry literature, the term ‘programme management’ is often used interchangeably with ‘project management’ to describe the specific delivery of projects. It is also defined, in many sources, as the management of a portfolio of projects. Onepoint’s preferred definition of programme management is as follows:
A capability to lead and manage resources, knowledge and skills in the effective deployment of multiple projects designed collectively to deliver enhanced value.
Over the past three decades a number of methods for implementing the programme management delivery process has evolved: waterfall, prototyping, iterative and incremental development, spiral development, rapid application development, extreme programming and various types of agile methodology. All these methods have their own advantages and disadvantages, and while suited to specific kinds of project, are not necessarily suitable for every situation.
As stated in the PMI-2015 Pulse of the Profession® report, projects with programme management maturity are far more successful than those without it — 76% compared to 54%. A startling number of initiatives fail to deliver the expected value, never get implemented, or cost substantially more and take substantially longer than planned.
In a report issued by the UK National Audit Office (Improving IT procurement: The impact of the Office of Government Commerce’s initiatives on departments and suppliers in the delivery of major IT-enabled projects), the following common causes of failure in IT-enabled projects were cited:
- Lack of a clear link between the project and the organisation’s key strategic priorities, including agreed measures of success.
- Lack of clear senior management and ministerial ownership and leadership.
- Lack of effective engagement with stakeholders.
- Lack of skills and proven approach to project and risk management.
- Lack of understanding of and contact with the supply industry at senior levels in the organisation.
- Evaluation of proposals driven by initial price rather than long-term value for money (especially securing delivery of business benefits).
- Too little attention to dividing development and implementation into manageable steps.
- Inadequate resources and skills to deliver the total delivery portfolio.
Onepoint Programme Management
Taking into consideration all of the above, Onepoint believes that traditional programme and project management approaches and techniques are becoming less effective as the nature and challenges of change evolve. We have observed three trends driving the need for a new approach:
- Increasingly complex and interdependent organisational changes.
- Delivering real business benefits involves more cross-departmental or functional changes to processes, systems and structures, and collaboration with third parties.
- Existing organisational structures, processes and systems do not support newly demanded changes.
To address these new challenges and to maximise speed of delivery, Onepoint’s approach includes the following key elements:
- Creation of an integrated and continuous delivery model to deliver business changes.
- Building capabilities enabling agility in response to environment or markets.
- Development and implementation of new processes, structures and systems, as well as the skills and abilities of key people.
- Development of a strategy of effective decision making for selection, prioritisation, sequencing and management of initiatives.
- Integration of delivery of programmes and projects with operational structures, processes and systems.
- Effective management of people throughout the process of change, making it easier to check whether benefits are delivered.
- Involvement of the programme manager and sales and marketing and solution architecture teams right from from the outset of a project.
Recommended delivery practices
Onepoint’s solution plans, implemented by our industry best solution architects and experienced programme management team, are designed to deliver maximum value to all our clients, via industry recommended best delivery practices:
Four Key Steps
Onepoint identifies four simple key steps for a successful project/programme delivery. This helps us to be transparent with our progress and ensure that we meet client expectations in regard to agreed timelines, cost and quality. These steps are incorporated into each SDLC (Initiate, Plan, Analyse, Design, Build, Test and Deploy) phase.
- Project/Programme delivery plan.
- Scope management plan.
- Risk and Issue management plan.
- Quality management plan.
- Configuration management plan.
- Resource management plan.
- Communication plan.