MSP® Foundation and Practitioner

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Introduction to MSP Tutorial

1 Introduction to MSP

Hello and welcome to lesson 1 of the Managing Successful Programmes Certification Course offered by Simplilearn. In today’s world of dynamic changes and external stimulators, organisations are forced to adopt the changes in order to survive. Only those organisations that have learnt how to transform themselves through effective leadership and strategic control will prosper. Programme management is a key tool to enable organisations to deliver their strategy. Managing successful programmes represent proven best practices which enables an organisation to deliver successful transformations. Let us begin with the objectives of this lesson in the next screen.

2 Objective

By the end of this lesson, you will be able to: ? Explain the MSP® framework ? Differentiate between a programme and a project ? Explain programme management ? Describe programme management environment Let us move on to the next screen to discuss the concept of MSP®

3 MSP Features

Managing successful programmes or MSP® is a best practice guide part of AXELOS best management practices portfolio. The guide comprises a set of principles and processes to be used when managing a programme to ensure that the programme maximises its chance of success. MSP® basically represents proven programme management best practices in the successful delivery of transformational changes. The best practices in MSP® are drawn from both public and private sector programmes. In the next screen, we will explain the MSP® framework.

4 MSP Framework

The pictorial representation of MSP® Framework constitutes programme management principles or MSP® principles, governance themes and transformational flow. We can read these from the outermost circle to the innermost circle. MSP® principles are derived from the lessons learnt in different kinds of programmes across public and private sector. They represent the factors whose presence will increase the chances of success of a programme. MSP® governance themes allow organisations to define, measure and control the programme management approach. Going forward, in the next few lessons, we will discuss all of these themes in detail. Finally, MSP® transformational flow guides us through the lifecycle of a programme, from its inception to the delivery of capability and final closure. In the next screen, we will understand the concept of programme.

5 Programme-Introduction

MSP® defines programme as “A temporary and flexible organisation structure created to coordinate, direct and oversee the implementation of a set of related projects and activities in order to deliver the outcomes and benefits related to organisation's strategic objectives”. This implies that for every programme, we should have a clear idea of the outcome that needs to be delivered. We have to ensure that the outcome is delivered in a timely manner with planned resources and most importantly, the outcomes and benefits should remain aligned to organisation’s objectives. In the next screen, we will discuss the differences between project and programme.

6 Differences between Programme and Project

Definition of a programme is very similar to that of a project. The main difference is that the project’s timeline is shorter, while a programme can run for many years and even decades. For example, city reconstruction can be referred to as a programme. In this programme, we will have smaller projects like laying roads, building houses, creating parts of the city, transport infrastructure, etc. This example makes it clear that a programme constitutes of smaller projects, where all the projects are aligned to deliver one outcome, which in this example is “a new city”. The other difference that can be derived from this example is the fact that the projects will deliver an output that will be immediately useful. When roads are laid, it will serve its purpose for easier transportation. On the other hand, outcomes and benefits of programme may take a longer time to be delivered. The above programme may have been started with an aim of reducing pressure on a nearby city resource or increasing the quality of life of residents there. When a new law or a change in the process is initiated, it usually takes some time for the results to show up. These things will take time to be effectively measured after completion of programme. The third difference between the two is that the programme focuses more on direction of strategy and how best to deliver it, because the main aim of a programme is to deliver a transformational change. The scope of a project is smaller when compared to that of a programme. A project’s focus remains on management and co-ordination within the project team. Thus, although programme delivers multiple individual projects under one umbrella, its purpose is to provide something more tangible and effective than the results of individual projects. The only condition is that the projects should be strategically aligned. In the next screen, we will understand what programme management is

7 Programme Management

Programme management is defined by MSP® as an “Action of carrying out coordinated organisation, direction and implementation of a dossier of projects and transformation activities to achieve outcomes and realisation of benefits of strategic importance to business”. Programme management has to align with three critical organisational elements: corporate strategy; delivery mechanism for change; and business as usual. Let us discuss these elements in detail, starting with corporate strategy. In any organisation, it is the strategy that drives the inception of a programme. Each programme will have clear goals set by the organisation in line with its future plans. We can see it from the example of the city that we used earlier. Organisational strategy will define the programme. It can be a niche city for rich people with all the amenities or it can be a government programme to construct a clean city for everyone. The next point is delivery mechanism for change. How exactly are we planning to deliver the change decided by the corporate strategy? This leads to creating a new capability and then putting it to use. For example, while planning a city, we have to ensure that things are done in the right order. First, we have to lay the roads, then plan for transportation, then build houses and other amenities and in the end, we can build parks. This can only be done by proper co-ordination and by ensuring that each project knows its role in the programme. Further, we also have to plan how the population will move in and adjust to the new locality. We will need to plan some support functions for that phase as well. Additionally, we need to make sure that all the outputs delivered by the programme are integrated into business operations. The next point is business as usual. Business as usual cannot stop for a programme. There is no organisation that will stop its work to implement the changes. Changes and day-to-day work must go simultaneously. For example, when the projects for the city construction are in progress, it should not impact other tasks of nearby locality or become a nuisance to nearby residents. Programme management often involves changes in the way people work. It may lead to cultural changes and might affect the operating style and overall character of organisation. When a change is associated with people and the way they work, we must ensure that the aspects like insecurity, comfort level with new processes, confusion about reasons for change, etc. are recognised. We also need to ensure that people affected by these factors are given sufficient assistance and help, so that they can adjust to the new methods. For example, it is better to inform people about what they would gain or lose, if they accept or reject the new change. Programme management also provides a framework which can decide the priorities of project and help resolve conflicts like resources. Programme management maintains performance levels by breaking programme into manageable chunks and tranches. The whole programme cannot be delivered in one go. It needs to be divided into tranches judiciously, so that it is easier to manage the programme as well as to ensure that higher priority outcomes are delivered faster. Division needs to be carefully done so as to minimise the occurrences of projects running across tranches. In the next screen, we will look into programme management environment.

9 Programme Management Environment

Programme management environment is a complex structure. Organisation’s corporate strategies and policies can be influenced and shaped from both internal and external environment. For example, a new rule from the government may force organisation to restructure the way they work. Programmes are then defined, scoped and prioritised to implement and deliver the required outcomes. Programmes will initiate, monitor and align the constituting projects and related activities. These projects and activities will deliver and implement required outputs into operations. This process continues until all benefits like new or transformed operations, services and capability are achieved. Other policy changes may take place during the programme. Therefore, programme has to be robust and flexible to adjust and remain aligned with organisational strategy, at all times.

10 Summary

Let us summarise what we have learnt in this lesson: ? Managing successful programmes gives us a framework to successfully deliver transformational changes. ? The framework includes transformational flow, governance themes and principles. ? A project’s timeline is shorter, while a programme can run for many years and decades. ? Programme management is the action of carrying out coordinated organisation, direction and implementation of a dossier of projects and transformation activities to achieve outcomes and realisation of benefits of strategic importance to a business. ? Programme management environment is a complex structure and takes into account all influencing factors. Next, we will focus on the types of programmes and the circumstances for using MSP®.

  • Disclaimer
  • 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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