Bite-Sized Views from 3Kites Consulting – Programme Manager – an Unnecessary Role or a Good Investment?

Where an organisation has a number of projects running concurrently, the role of Programme Manager is often considered. This is a senior role which has overall responsibility for the running of the projects within the programme.

But is this necessary if you have a Project Manager and good governance on each project?

The Programme Manager will support the Programme Board and project teams in identifying and meeting the strategic needs of the organisation; understanding and ensuring that the realisation of benefits is achieved and managing strategic stakeholders through the life of all the projects in the programme.

The benefits of including this role and aligning the multiple projects to a programme are often underestimated. The Programme Manager has an all-seeing eye over the projects enabling them to monitor that all are running to plan and helping to avoid clashes of resource or deployment where these would create a risk. Programme Managers have the benefit of seeing all the risks and ensuring mitigations are put in place. Such risks in an organisation are often similar, even if the projects themselves are very different, and this provides an opportunity for mitigating actions that cover several projects or even the whole programme. The broader view of the role can also help to identify opportunities for reducing costs, especially where these can be shared across projects or where there are benefits of scale.

Firms need to weigh the costs of using a Programme Manager with the potential benefits. However, where projects are sufficiently large, numerous or complex, these benefits can be considerable including avoiding delays from project clashes, managing resources across programmes and sharing mitigations. These benefits can bring both tangible and hidden savings which offset the cost of the role and improve the success of the projects being managed.

Worth some consideration!

Justine Francis and Rachel Edmondson – March 2021

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3Kites Consulting
3Kites is a consultancy that provides legal firms, in-house legal teams and the professional services sector with fresh thinking based on its unique combination of legal and IT skills and experience. Learn more about 3Kites here.