Author Archives: aspireeurope

Designing a programme management framework is hard

Safe LandingNo organisation can successfully deliver programmes and projects without an effective framework and common lifecycle around which controls can be based.

Our maturity and capability assessment of over 120 organisations enabled us to review a wide range of processes, guidance and tools that are used across a range of sectors.

We found:

  • Incomplete frameworks with inadequate lifecycles
  • Frameworks that replicate manuals and basic theory but add no value
  • Roles and responsibilities that are generic, confusing or conflicting
  • Themes, such as risk, that are not connected to the lifecycle or sit in isolation
  • Generic role definitions with no application of the responsibilities
  • Templates that bear no resemblance to the lifecycle or processes
  • Little connection between programme and project management systems
  • Portfolio Management frameworks that fail to address balancing priorities

To overcome this, we developed our own Align Framework® and offer it as a fully supported package. If you would like to find out more about the Align Framework®, click here

P3M3® is a registered trademark of AXELOS Limited.
Align Framework® is a registered trademark of Aspire Europe Limited.

Leave a comment

Filed under Aspire Accelerate, Programme and Project framework

Portfolio offices play a key role in strategy delivery – Forrester research

In this article by Forrester Consulting, they have written an excellent paper on how strategic PMOs play a key role in increasing an organisations ability to deliver the right projects in the right way, thus improving organisational performance and agility.

It includes an interesting section about the triggers for PMOs taking on this strategic relevance, not surprisingly, most are linked to a corporate calamity of some sort or a new CEO who is a believer.

Their findings illustrate that the critical success factors include:

  • They have a seat at the executive table
  • They are a critical part of the strategic planning process
  • They embrace core competencies
  • They use consistent objectives across industries and regions

For those of you that are familiar with Eileen Roden’s P3O®, some of this will be old news but it is still a very interesting article with current examples.

P3O® is a [registered] trade mark of AXELOS Limited, used under permission of AXELOS Limited. All rights reserved.

Leave a comment

Filed under Learning, p3o, Portfolio Management, Programme & Portfolio Office

Fresh Look – Benefits Management

We thought it would be a good idea to revisit some of the guiding principles that underpin the world of portfolio, programme and project management. In a world of information overload, it is very easy to lose sight of what matters, so this is the first in a series of posts that we revisit to remind about some core concepts.

Picture1

In this article, we revisit benefits management, which is still one of the most mysterious disciplines in the world of transformation. Benefits appear like magic when the business case is being written. With earnest consideration and challenge, even more mysteriously, they seem to disappear as soon as the business is signed off and people get down to the real business of delivering stuff, probably never returning to the sticky subject of benefits and why the change was initiated in the first place.

We’ve pulled together some of what we have found to be guiding principles which may increase your chances of achieving your benefits delivery.

Leave a comment

Filed under Benefits Management, Knowledge Nugget

Wasting money on training – what can we do to help?

Strange but true

  1. In 2011 the UK National Audit Office (NAO) reported that a lack of programme and project management skills was one of the major concerns for senior managers. In 2017 there is an estimate that the UK public sector is 4,000 short of the number needed to deliver Brexit.
  2. Our skills and capability assessments have also highlighted some other alarming statistics, one of which is that 23% of people involved in transformation programmes and projects have no formal qualifications.
  3. Over 250,000 people worldwide are qualified in PRINCE2® and over 50,000 in Managing Successful Programmes (MSP®), but when we undertake maturity assessments and assurance reviews, we find organisations do not actually use the fundamental concepts or processes. So basically people are gaining qualifications on subject areas they do not use.

If you are interested in finding out more about why organisations fail to extract better value from the training market, why not read our article – delivering better value from training

In the meantime, here are the things that the Aspire Academy award winning team can help you with.

15922409225_55d9e38190_o

If you want targeted development to improve organisational and individual performance in both the processes and leadership of change, we can help with the  following:

  1. Competency Framework – that can be adapted for your organisation to help target your training and is aligned to the APM Body of Knowledge.
  2. Competency and Capability Assessment – the process and survey that can profile the current organisation to target your training more effectively.
  3. Short Courses – a range of  ‘off the shelf’, customisable topic and role related courses specifically targeted at improving performance. A number have associated vocational qualifications from C4CM.
  4. eLearning Courses – we have all the main APM Group qualification courses and a range of topic specific courses that focus on application of the concepts, e.g. planning. The courses are modularised into over 250 “Knowledge Nuggets” which are short sharp sessions covering a specific topic or technique.
  5. Accredited Qualifications – we can offer the full range of APM, APM Group, AXELOS Limited and C4CM qualifications in face-to-face events. Result statistics from the APMG exam institute show our average pass rate across all our products and qualification levels is a 97% success rate over the past year!
  6. Align Framework – A portfolio, programme and project framework which provides a self-help knowledge base and just-in-time guidance for teams. For more information on the Align Framework, click here.
  7. Community of Practice – will enable personal development and networking and organisational learning and improvement.
MSP® and PRINCE2® are [registered] trade marks of AXELOS Limited, used under permission of AXELOS Limited. All rights reserved.

Leave a comment

Filed under Aspire Academy

Have you checked out the Aspire Europe youtube channel yet ?

We have been developing on our You Tube channel over the past year to bring you a host of video content from programme life cycles, benefits/risk/assurance (etc.) management to revision tips on how to successfully pass your exam.

We aim to keep the videos to a maximum of 10 minutes to cover key topics for busy people on the go – admittedly, with such a passionate team with a wealth of knowledge to share, this wasn’t an easy task…

Here is a behind the scenes shot of Aspire Europe’s managing director, Rod Sowden recording a video on programme organisation.rs-video-recording

Rod Sowden is the lead author for a number of publications including MSP®, P3M3® and more recently released survival guides for senior responsible owners, programme managers and business change managers which he regularly refers to throughout the videos. Click here for more information on the publications we have available.

Click here to visit our channel and keep an eye out for more videos coming soon.

9237 IBP Stamp_Author WHITE

Got an idea for a video you would like to see? We would love to hear from you:
Email: theacademyteam@aspireeurope.com

MSP® and P3M3® are [registered] trade marks of AXELOS Limited, used under permission of AXELOS Limited. All rights reserved.

1 Comment

Filed under News, Programme Management

Lewis Hamilton – business change manager extraordinaire

There was a radio interview last week with the Mercedes team principal explaining how Lewis Hamilton was heavily involved in the technical development and the amount of time he spent with the construction team.

This has made for a great anology for people trying to understand how the BCM role in Managing Successful Programmes (MSP®) is supposed to work.

MSP Sound bites – how was Lewis Hamilton the Mercedes F1 BCM

MSP® is a [registered] trade mark of AXELOS Limited, used under permission of AXELOS Limited. All rights reserved.

Leave a comment

Filed under Programme Management

10% discount on our Planning guide!

Is it time your organisation improved its planning?

Anyone can claim to be at the leading edge of the industry or a thought leader, but how many people put themselves ‘out there’ and go into print as authors, securing the backing of one of the world’s leading publishing companies like the TSO?

This book was written by Rod Sowden (Aspire Europe’s MD). It started life as a guidance for one of his customers, but later developed into a course and finally evolved into a book. It evolved as a result of P3M3® assessments, spotting a systemic problem with planning in most organisations which we found to be a global issue. The book helps to pull all the threads and concepts together into one practical guide that extracts the best from many bodies of knowledge around the world.

Why not have a look at the British Computer Society review

We are confident this book will make a difference to the success of your projects so why not take a look inside! Contact us to find out more and how to obtain a 10% discount when purchasing through us.

P3M3® is a [registered] trade mark of AXELOS Limited, used under permission of AXELOS Limited. All rights reserved.

Leave a comment

Filed under Aspire Academy, P3M3®, Planning, Programme Management, Project Management