Project management maturity

Many project management organizations talk about performance improvement. However, few take deliberate and comprehensive action. Ulteig project management experts understand the complexities associated with any performance improvement initiative. We work collaboratively with our clients to determine the maturity of your project management organization and develop and implement meaningful change within your company. We do this by leading you through the OPM3® improvement process. To start, it is important to understand the components of OPM3.

Project Management Institute’s (PMI) OPM3 provides guidelines for improving project management within organizations. OPM3 is a strategic framework that focuses on improving the maturity of Portfolio, Program and Project management. PMI states, “OPM3 integrates organization-enabling practices to consistently and predictably deliver organization strategy to produce better performance, better results and a sustainable advantage”

There are three key elements to OPM3: Domains, Organizational Enablers and Process Improvement. The interface of Portfolio, Program and Project Management is very important and represent the key Domains of this model. According to PMI’s third edition of OPM3:

“Portfolio Management aligns with organizational strategies by selecting the right programs or projects, prioritizing the work, and providing the needed resources. Program Management harmonizes the program and project comments and control independencies in order to realize specific benefits. Project Management develops and implements plans to achieve a specific scope that is driven by the objectives of the Program or Portfolio and is subject to organizational strategies.”

The next key element of importance is that of Organizational Enablers. These include structural, cultural, technological and human resources. PMI states that, “Organizational Enablers are leveraged to support and sustain the implementation of best practices in Portfolios, Programs and Projects.”

There are 18 Organizational Enablers. Examples of these enablers include, in part:

  • Governance
  • Organizational structures
  • Project management metrics
  • Project management training
  • Project success criteria
  • Resource allocation
  • Sponsorship

The final element of the OPM3 is that of Process Improvement. The goal for all key Portfolio, Program and Project management processes is to: standardize, measure, control and improve. In the Portfolio Domain the process groups include: defining, aligning and authorizing and controlling. The Program Domain process groups include: strategy alignment, benefits management, stakeholder engagement, governance and life cycle management. The processes assessed in the Project Domain are: initiating, planning, executing, monitoring and control and closing.

Once the Domain, Organizational Enablers and Processes have been identified, the OPM3 assessment of the organization will occur by assessing itself against documented PMI Best Practices. The complexity of the assessment can vary greatly based on organizational objectives. Further, organizational maturity is measured by project management best practices.

These best practices are documented within PMI’s Project Management Book of Knowledge (PMBOK). PMI states that an “organization achieves a Best Practice when it demonstrates maturity evidenced by successful fulfillment of capabilities and outcomes. For organizational project management, this includes the ability to deliver projects predictably, consistently and successfully.”

As an example, in early 2010, Ulteig recognized the value of organizational maturity improvement and embarked on a systematic internal project management performance improvement initiative using key components of OPM3. Ulteig assessed the current state of its project management organization and developed an implementation plan focused on:

  • Determining the desired organization structure
  • Securing the required resources
  • Establishing and continuously improving processes
  • Assessing and improving its technology needs.

Today, Ulteig’s Project Management organization:

  • Is centralized and utilizes a portfolio management approach
  • Manages all internal Ulteig projects
  • Increases project execution efficiency
  • Has improved on-time delivery
  • Has increased its client satisfaction

Ulteig’s project management organization remains focused on organizational maturity and will continue to strive for improvement as it continuality assess itself against project management industry best practices in its ongoing goal of operational excellence through organizational maturity.

Our hands on experience allow Ulteig’s team of Project Management experts to understand the importance of PMI Best Practice and organization maturity interrelationship. We work with our clients to prepare, assess and implement performance improvement initiatives throughout the Portfolio, Program and Project Management Domains. Our goal is to thoroughly assess our client organization to determine their point in the Organizational Life Cycle and help them develop and implement performance improvements to increase the desired end state of maturity, as shown in the chart below.

The benefits derived by engaging in an OPM3 initiative often include:

  • Consistent management and greater authority
  • Increased operational effectiveness
  • Efficient resource allocation
  • Resource staffing requirements
  • Greater employee productivity
  • Enhanced accountability and communication
  • Reduced cost and rework
  • Improved on-time delivery
  • Reduced risk
  • Predictable delivery of performance
  • Clear line of sight between company strategy and operations

In our next installment, we will explore in greater detail the Ulteig Project Management Assessment methodology.