Project Management

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PROJECT MANAGEMENT raconteur.net 2 RACONTEUR 22 / 05 / 2016 COMMERCIAL FEATURE STRATEGIC ALIGNMENT The need for the alignment of projects and strategy is as urgent as ever. According to the Pulse report, executive leaders and PMO directors agree on the importance of improving their competitiveness over the next three years. Eight in ten executive leaders and PMO directors agree they will achieve that by formulating strategies appropriate for changing market conditions, prioritising and funding the correct initiatives and/or projects, executing initiatives and/or pro- jects in a way that delivers strategic results, and using lessons learnt from failed projects to inform strategic planning. An e• ective PMO addresses this need by: 1. Freeing executives to think strategically – rather than being bogged down in project details, executives can focus on strategic alignment; 2. Increasing strategic fl exibility – a PMO creates the capacity to select the projects best suited to each moment; 3. Driving business growth through cus- tomer satisfaction – a PMO increases the chance that projects will be delivered on time and on budget, which provides tangi- ble value to customers; 4. Improving decision-making – organisa- tions can better evaluate the benefi ts and risks of individual projects in the context of the entire portfolio. As businesses begin to undertake more complex projects and develop programmes to manage them, the role of the PMO has be- come much more visible, providing organisa- tions with project support and guidance. Furthermore, with responsibility to align projects and programmes to corporate strat- egy, the PMO establishes and oversees ap- propriate governance of projects to ensure strategy alignment and benefi ts realisation. Organisations that align their PMO to strat- P erformance – it's what counts when a critical project is in the pipeline. Your organisation relies on project and ex- ecutive teams to drive the strategies that convert these projects into measurable business successes. It's seldom a straightforward task to align projects with organisational strategy and many businesses struggle as a result. Project Management Institute (PMI) reports in its 2016 Pulse of the Profession®: The High Cost of Low Performance that organisations in the UK continue wasting $138 million for every $1 bil- lion invested in projects and programmes due to poor performance. To reduce risk and stay competitive, today's leaders are placing a premium on the align- ment of projects and programmes to long- term strategy. Project management o— ces (PMOs) give organisations a way to strength- en this connection. "The PMO can provide a vital link between strategy and implementation," says Mark A. Langley, president and chief executive of Pro- ject Management Institute. "Without it, organ- isations face a higher risk of wasted work and redundancy of resources, which a• ect pro- jects and, ultimately, business performance." The PMO supports execution of project work by equipping the organisation with methodology, standards and tools to enable project managers to better deliver projects. It increases the capability of the organisation by implementing proven practices and providing a central point of contact for project managers. It may provide training, mentoring and capability development for people, fa- cilitate knowledge management through knowledge transfer, and perform portfolio management functions to ensure strategy alignment and benefi ts realisation. egy report 27 per cent more projects com- pleted successfully and 42 per cent fewer projects with scope creep. BUILDING YOUR PMO Where to start? The fi rst priority is to get ex- ecutive buy-in and make the PMO a partner in strategy. An executive sponsor is key; this is an individual in your organisation whose seniori- ty allows him or her to infl uence stakehold- ers, remove obstacles and allocate project resources as needed. The sponsor's access to other members of the executive leadership team, including the chief executive, helps ensure alignment between the PMO and the overall strategy. Next, it's essential to fi nd the right people. If possible, hire internally and recruit from multiple departments, such as sales, market- ing operations and IT, to broaden the team skill set. When implementing new processes, look for internal best practices and allow for some local fl exibility. The PMO's role should be more consulta- tive than administrative or regulatory, adapt- ing practices from the Guide to the Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK® Guide) to individual initiatives within an organ- isation's process and culture. The PMO also serves as the central resource for organisa- tional knowledge transfer. By identifying and capitalising on the major contributors to pro- ject success and avoiding the leading causes of project failure, project success should be a predictable and repeatable event, instead of a hit-and-miss occurrence. LONG-TERM SUCCESS The most e• ective organisations not only recognise the need for project, programme and portfolio management in everything they do, but also give the PMO its proper credence – management authority, support and tools – within the operational structure of the business. It is vital top executives un- derstand the PMO and the best way to de- ploy and support it. To create a culture that embraces project management and to in- crease the business value they bring to the organisation, PMOs need to have clear direc- tion, governance and support. Staying true to the goals of a project or programme has always been a key element of success, but any number of business and mar- ket trends can knock projects – and organi- sations – o• course. An e• ective PMO helps overcome these inevitable bumps in the road and set a clear course for success. For more information please visit www.PMI.org.uk COMMERCIAL FEATURE SETTING PROJECTS UP FOR SUCCESS Four ways a project management offi ce can strengthen your organisation… The PMO can provide a vital link between strategy and implementation. Without it, organisations face a higher risk of wasted work and redundancy of resources, which a• ect projects and, ultimately, business performance IMPROVE PROJECT OUTCOMES WITH AN ALIGNED ENTERPRISE WIDE PMO EPMO High alignment Met goals/ intent Within budget On time Scope creep Projects deemed failures 71% 59% 38% 13% 47% 41% 17% Low alignment Priority of developing technical, leadership, and strategic and business management skills is very or somewhat high Priority of all three is very or somewhat low 71% 51% 64% 38% 61% 35% 53% 38% 13% 21% 8in10 wasted by UK organisations for every $1 billion invested due to poor project performance — a 9 per cent increase over last year executive leaders and PMO directors agree on the importance of improving their competitiveness over the next three years Ticketmaster International, a finalist for the 2015 PMO of the Year award, has first-hand knowledge of how to strengthen strategic value through a PMO. W hen the company merged with Live Nation in 2010, they were tasked with "joining up the ends" between depar tments, processes and strateg y. This entailed controlling the deliver y of projects and collecting information to inform good business decisions. With a budget of more than $2 million, the PMO needed a better way to prioritise its mission-critical initiatives. Product roadmaps and requests were often left hanging in limbo, so the PMO asked each project team to build a business case using a template it provided. This allowed teams to show where they needed more resources, which led to accelerated delivery. The PMO also brought in an analyst to help teams clearly outline the anticipated business benefi ts of their projects. Armed with this information, the PMO provided project managers with the tools to address risks and manage change by accessing information about dependencies in real time. "A strategic PMO must be able to shape the portfolio and the projects that will make a real diff erence to the business," says John McIntyre, head of PMO at Ticketmaster International. "Our PMO is testament to PMI's research fi ndings that the alignment of strategy and portfolio management, along with benefi ts identifi cation, is key to success. We have used this valuable insight to improve strategic planning, master dependencies, shor ten cycle times and increase the strategic va lue of each project's output." Mark A . Langley President and chief executive of PMI T here is a challenge to embracing project management that may seem surprising in a labour market still re- covering from a sustained recession – the demand for qualified project managers outstrips supply. This creates a highly competitive job market, so organisations need to be pre- pared for a real commitment to attracting and retaining the right talent. As part of this, establishing a formal career path for project managers within the organisation is vital to retention. Organisations that prioritise having the right talent for executing strategic initia- tives have a critical capability which gives HIGH‹PERFORMING PMOs NEED TOP TALENT them a competitive advantage. One way organisations reduce the risk of investing in uncertain skillsets is by including cer- tifications in their project management talent requirements. Project management certifi cations, such as the Project Management Profession- al (PMP®), ensure the hiring organisation that resources are easily transferable across industry sectors, business units and geo- graphical regions. They bring to each role the same set of proven skills and a shared vocabulary with other project managers and those who work with project managers. While approaches to talent management for project professionals vary across or- ganisations, the skills required by today's project managers are clear. Well-rounded project managers encompass the multiple skills that make up the Project Management Institute's Talent Triangle™, with the requi- site technical project management skills, strategic and business management skills, and leadership skills to make projects work from the ground up. In addition to proven technical acumen, they have the business experience and re- al-world perspective necessary to align pro- jects with an organisation's long-term goals. More importantly, they're able to maintain collaborative relationships with the leaders who are driving that strategy. Leadership skills make the third side of the Talent Triangle and leadership is the catalyst that takes a project from the boardroom table to the showroom floor. Successful project managers must wear many hats and understand multiple busi- ness "dialects" to communicate effec- tively with stakeholders from all areas of the org char t. When organisations focus on all three ar- eas, 40 per cent more projects meet orig- inal goals and business intent. Additional improvements are realised in managing budget, time, scope creep and projects deemed failures. A variety of factors a• ect the complex equation of project management talent, other talent management, and execut- ing strategy through projects and pro- grammes. And these factors – external or internal, universal or unique – require attention and action from all stakeholders. As organisations continue to make com- plex, higher-stakes initiatives their top priority and place a greater premium on performance, the need for ongoing devel- opment of project talent will become more apparent and more acute. IMPROVE PROJECT OUTCOMES WITH THE RIGHT SKILLS Met goals/ intent Within budget On time Scope creep Projects deemed failures $138m 27% more projects were completed successfully, and 42 per cent fewer projects with scope creep were reported by organisations that align their EPMO to strategy Source: Data: Pulse of the Profession®: The High Cost of Low Performance, 2016. Graphics: Raconteur 40% more projects meet original goals and business intent when organisations focus on all three areas of the Project Management Institute's Talent Triangle™ CASE STUDY: PMI 2015 PMO OF THE YEAR AWARD John McIntyre, head of PMO Ticketmaster International 62% 54% 56%

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