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Project Oversight

Project Oversight
A set of principles and processes to guide and improve the management of projects.

Oversight’s Purposes:
To ensure projects meet the organizational needs for standards, procedures, accountability, efficient allocation of resources, and continuous improvement in the management of projects.
To support the project manager.


Key Responsibilities of Project Portfolio Management
Senior executive oversight committee

Reviews project options available by type (new, operational, compliance)
Confirms business case and linkage to organizational strategy
Selects, prioritizes, and balances the overall risk of all organizational projects
Ensures availability of resources and competencies
Sets macro time, cost, and requirements
Reviews gating outcomes


Phase Gate Methodology

Phase Gate Review Process
A structured process to review, evaluate, and document outcomes in each project phase and to provide management with information to guide resource deployment toward strategic goals.

Decision Gate Components:
Required deliverables
Gate criteria and specific outputs
A clear yes/no decision on whether to go ahead.


Key Benefits of Using Phase Gating

Provides excellent training for functional staff who serve on oversight review groups.
Encourages a larger perspective and role of projects within the organization.
Is a clear-cut process, easily understood, and applicable to all projects in a portfolio.
Provides a structured process for a project office to follow on all projects.
Eliminates poor value projects.
Supports faster decision making with predefined deliverables for each gate.


Organization Project Management in the Long Run

Capability Maturity Model (CMM)
Focuses on guiding and assessing organizations in implementing concrete best practices of managing software development projects.

Organizational Project Maturity Model (OPM3)
Is divided into a continuum of growth levels: initial, repeatable, defined, managed, and optimized.


Balanced Scorecard Model

Assumes that people will take the necessary actions to improve the performance of the organization on the given measures and goals.

Reviews projects over a longer horizon—5 to 10 years after the project is implemented than other models.

Has a more “macro” perspective than project selection models.

Measures performance results for four major areas of activities—customer, internal, innovation and learning, and financial.


Oversight Activities
At the Organization Level

Project selection.
Portfolio management.
Improving how all projects are managed over time.
Assessing and elevating the maturity level of the organization’s project management system.
Using balanced scorecard approach to review progress on strategic priorities.


Oversight Activities
At the Project Level

Review projects’ objectives.
Decide on issues raised by the project manager.
Track and assist the project to resolve bottlenecks.
Review status reports from the project manager.
Audit and review lessons learned.
Authorize major deviations from the original scope.
Cancel the project.


Current and Future Trends in Project Management

Forces for Change
Global competition, knowledge explosion, innovation, time to market, and shortened product life cycles

Two Major Outcomes for the 21st Century:
An increase in the scope of project management and system integration.
The focus of projects has shifted from tactical to strategic.
An increasing discipline in the way projects are managed.


Importance of Oversight to the Project Manager
Oversight Functions:

Providing support and help to the project manager where needed.

Determining the environment in which the project manager will implement his or her project.

Influence the performance measures used to hold the project manager responsible and accountable.

Providing the oversight group to which the project manager will reporting at predetermined phases in the project.


Increasing Scope of Project Management and System Integration

Portfolio Project Management
The centralized management of projects to ensure that the allocation of resources to projects is directed toward projects that contribute the greatest value to organization goals.

Project Office (PO)
The unit responsible for continued support of consistent application of selection criteria, standards, and processes; training of and general assistance to project managers; and continued improvement and use of best practices.


Decision Gate Review Process
Decision Gate Components

Required deliverables
Gate criteria and specific outputs
A clear yes/no decision on whether to go ahead.