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Overview of Delivering the Capability Tutorial

1 Overview of Delivering the Capability

Hello and welcome to lesson 17 of the Managing Successful Programmes Certification course offered by Simplilearn. In the previous lesson, we discussed managing the tranches. In this lesson, we will cover the fourth transformational flow, which is, ‘delivering the capability’. Let us begin with the objectives of this lesson in the next screen.

2 Objectives

By the end of this lesson, you will be able to: ? Describe the inputs, principle controls, key roles and the outputs of the process, ‘delivering the capability’ ? Explain the steps involved in the same process In the next screen, let us first find out the position of ‘delivering the capability’ in the MSP® framework.

3 MSP Framework

The MSP® framework aids in finding the exact position of ‘delivering the capability’, which is in the innermost ring of the image shown on the screen. ‘Delivering the capability’ covers the activities for coordinating and managing project delivery according to the programme plan. This process works very closely with ‘realising the benefits’ process. Both these processes are being governed by ‘managing the tranches’ that provides high-level direction, guidance and control. In the next screen, we will introduce the concept of ‘delivering the capability.’

4 Delivering the Capability Introduction

‘Delivering the capability’ is a process that delivers the capability defined in the blueprint through projects described in the projects dossier. Let us discuss the inputs to this process. The inputs to this process are boundary, management and governance baseline documentations, decision from the Programme Board to start the planned projects in the tranche or decisions that are related to some constraints for this process. In addition, if the projects are emergent programmes, there are inputs like the details of current projects. The principle controls of this process are mainly defined governance baseline controls. They are aided by project quality, acceptance criteria, tolerance limits for risks and others. Other principle controls of ‘delivering the capability’ process are dependency management, Programme Board monitoring and project assurance and audits. Constant monitoring from the Programme Board ensures that projects are running as planned and there are no conflicts with other projects. Project assurances and audits give confidence to stakeholders that outputs are delivered as planned. The Project Executive is accountable to the Programme Board for the success of the programme. The key roles identified in this process are that of the Senior Responsible Owner or SRO, the Programme Manager, the Business Change Manager or BCM and the Programme Office. We will learn about their responsibilities in detail, later in this lesson. Let us now review the ‘delivering the capability’ process. The steps involved in the process are start projects, engage stakeholders, align projects with benefits realisation and with programme objectives, governance: manage and control delivery, and close projects. We will discuss each of these in detail, in the following screens. But first let us discuss the outputs of this process. The outputs of this process include the project outputs which are delivered and accepted, and project highlight and delivery reports. They also include any escalations from projects, communication events and project definition documentation. Lessons learnt and evaluation reviews form a part of the outputs of this process. Updated management baselines are also an output of the process. In the next screen, we will understand how to start projects.

5 StartProjects

The Programme Manager is responsible for commissioning the projects within the programme and ensures that appropriate individuals are appointed to key project roles like the Project Manager. The Project Executive or the Sponsor is accountable to the Programme Board for a project’s success within time, scope, cost, risk and quality parameters. As each project is about to begin, the Programme Manager should ensure that each team fully understands the project brief, context of blueprint, tranches, benefits and project management standards. The project briefing should start with identifying the projects started by the programme. The list of projects can be found in the projects dossier. How projects fit in the bigger picture, like strategy, needs to be confirmed. It needs to be ensured that projects are aware of each other and understand the inter-dependencies. This will minimise future conflicts, and risks can be identified. Acceptance criteria for project outputs must be defined. It should be explained how the project outputs will be used to build capability and enable transition, leading to outcomes and benefits realisation. Projects need to be aware of the capability they have to deliver and how it will add to benefits realisation. Information from “defining a programme” can be used to provide projects with guidance on quality reporting, exceptions and escalations. In the following screen, we will discuss the next step of the process, which is ‘engage stakeholders’.

6 Engage Stakeholders

Maintaining the engagement of stakeholders and keeping them informed of progress and issues are an important part of successful programme engagement. It is also necessary to engage stakeholders to gain their cooperation. For example, involving stakeholders in requirement analysis or reviewing designs would make the project more clear to them and align the outputs as per their needs. This will also have an added advantage of giving stakeholders a sense of involvement, leading to better engagement and a more positive outcome. The Programme Manager may need to guide the communication, at times, with critical stakeholders and involve Business Change Managers or BCMs (Read as B-C-Ms) for the same. In the next screen, let us find out how to align projects with benefits realisation.

7 Align Projects with Benefits Realisation

The Business Change Manager is responsible for ensuring that particular benefits relevant to each project can be realised from implementing the outputs of those projects. Project briefs should be aligned with benefits profiles and benefits realisation plans in agreement with the Business Change Managers. They have a key role in the alignment of projects with planned benefits and programme schedules. They need to ensure that the inputs, business requirements and time constraints are in place for a project to deliver the outputs. The Business Change Manager provides expertise with the help of operational staff in assessing designs, prototypes and so on. It is also part of his responsibility to consider how well the proposals will work in real environment. The BCMs come from operational area and have the necessary expertise to make the judgement. They must sign off the project outputs that will provide the capability to deliver the outcomes and benefits. In the next screen, we will focus on aligning projects with programme objectives.

8 Align Projects with Programme Objectives

Aligning projects with programme objectives is a constant activity throughout the programme for all its projects. For projects started by the programme, initial alignment is achieved via project brief and maintained through reporting lines between the project and the programme. It is the Programme Manager’s duty to ensure that dependencies identified between the projects are managed effectively. The sign-off for a project plan by the Programme Manager signifies that proposed outputs are in line with strategic requirements. Sign-off should be based on assessing whether the proposed outputs and capabilities meet strategic requirements or not. In case a project continues through more than one tranche, the management stages should be aligned with the end tranche. This will ensure that maximum control can be exercised by the programme towards the project direction. Good governance is critical to success. When a programme starts projects, a part of the brief provides the relationship between the project and its programme. For example, it can be found out when and how projects report to the programme. An idea of the reporting exceptions can be gathered, so that the project knows when a situation is beyond its authority, and the acceptable tolerance limits, within which it can operate. Effective governance can be realised only if there is coordination between the Programme Board and the Project Board. In the next screen, we will understand how to monitor and control progress.

9 Step 5 Governance Manage and Control Delivery

‘Manage control and delivery’ is divided into two parts, namely, ‘monitor and control progress’ and ‘manage and resolve risks’. First, we will focus on ‘monitor and control progress’. Live projects are monitored by focusing on key areas such as outputs, timely delivery, estimates, costs and benefits, resources, scope, reporting formats and tracking programme plan and schedule. Click each tab to learn more.The project outputs should meet the requirements of the customers or programme. Whenever a project is undertaken, it is assigned with some acceptance criteria. This ensures that project outputs will be accepted by the client or the programme only if they satisfy the particular criteria. Delivery forecasts and report exceptions must be adhered to as soon as possible, to ensure alignment with the programme plan and other dependencies. This will help in increasing the confidence of the involved stakeholders. It is necessary that projects should adhere to the timelines, as any delay might have a cascading impact on dependent projects and on the overall programme.Now let us discuss the estimates, costs and benefits part. The tolerance limits of each project are defined by the programme. If the issues of cost, risk, and other parameters are within the tolerance limits, the project can take corrective actions without escalating it to the Programme Board. This ensures that there is a certain level of autonomy for the projects. But in scenarios where tolerance limits are breached, the issues need to be escalated to the Programme Manager. Tracking tolerance, estimating contribution towards benefits realisation and reporting exceptions help the management teams assess the impact. The suitability and availability of resources including the suppliers’ performance must be confirmed. This helps the programme and projects plan more efficiently.Any change needs to be formally managed to avoid scope creep. Any increase in scope means that the programme will need longer time to complete, along with increased effort and cost. So, adding scope without formal approval might lead to issues related to finance and resource conflicts in future.The projects should report in an agreed format to help aggregate the information at programme level, in line with the monitoring and control strategy. Any progress against the programme’s plan and schedule is monitored and tracked. Any variation beyond the tolerance limit is analysed for its impact on the programme.The Programme Manager is responsible for reviewing the projects and obtaining the information for benefits reviews and assessments. He is also responsible for dealing with escalations and exceptions from the projects. Managing dependencies and interfaces between the projects and checking alignment with requirements that are defined in the blueprint are other important tasks assigned to the Programme Manager. The Programme Manager working with the Business Change Manager or BCM has to ensure that the project outputs are of good quality and they will work well in full scale operational environment. In the next screen, we will focus on managing and resolving risks.

10 Manage and Resolve Risks

The identified risks should be reviewed and challenged on a regular basis. New risks should be identified and responses must be planned for them. This should be done in accordance with the risk management strategy. As the programme progresses, there will be inevitable delays which are unforeseen. There may be other situations that might threaten the progress of the programme. The Programme Manager should recognise and deal with anything that affects the successful delivery of a programme. This may also include managing the risks escalated by projects. Projects should also identify risks from their own perspective. They must be clear as to when the identified risks need to be managed at the project level and when they must be escalated to the Programme Manager. For each project, guidance for managing risks and issues should be described in the project brief prepared by the Programme Manager. For the overall programme, rules are included in risk and issue management strategy. There are circumstances when the project escalates risks to the Programme Manager. These include the scenario when dependent projects or programmes are impacted. The risks need to be escalated to ensure that the impacted project is aware of the risk. A scenario for escalation might be when the project does not have sufficient authority for managing a risk like the one caused due to a highly influenced stakeholder. The risks need to be escalated in cases where the planned actions will exceed the defined tolerances for cost, quality or time. It is quite possible that the project may not have the necessary skills or expertise to resolve the risk; in such a case, escalating it will be the only option available. If the project fails to deliver its outputs in line with the benefits realisation plan, it should immediately highlight this to the Programme Manager. In the following screen, we will focus on closing projects.

11 Close Projects

As each project prepares for a planned closure, there should be a formal delivery of project output to the programme. It should be ensured that the project output meets the acceptance criteria. It is important that the closing of projects is carefully controlled by the Programme Manager. If combined outputs from projects do not support the effective transition and do not lead to the required operational improvement, the expected benefits may not be realised. The project closure also includes a plan for post project review to assess benefits realisation. These reviews should be scheduled to fit into the programme’s review schedule and may also need independent scrutiny. One of the most important aspects of project closure is to capture the lessons learnt. The knowledge and experiences provided by these lessons can be shared across other projects in programme.

12 Summary

Let us summarise what we have learnt in this lesson: ? ‘Delivering the capability’ is a process that delivers the capability defined in the blueprint through the projects described in the projects dossier. ? Some of the inputs to this process are boundary, management and governance baseline documentations and decisions from the Programme Board. ? The principle controls of this process are mainly defined governance baseline controls. ? Some of the outputs of this process include the project outputs delivered and accepted, and project highlight and delivery reports. ? The steps involved in the process, ‘delivering the capability’, are ‘start projects’, ‘engage stakeholders’, ‘align projects with benefits realisation’, ‘align projects with programme objectives’ and so on. Next, we will discuss the roles involved in ‘delivering the capability’.

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  • PMP, PMI, PMBOK, CAPM, PgMP, PfMP, ACP, PBA, RMP, SP, and OPM3 are registered marks of the Project Management Institute, Inc.

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