Project Management Assessment

In today’s increasingly complex and competitive business environment, an organization’s ability to manage complex projects to deliver quality results, on time and within budget, is a key to its competitive success. Without that ability, the accomplishment of key business goals will be prevented or impeded, and profits will suffer. ELG can analyze your organization’s level of capability for managing projects and recommend specific actions for improving any areas that need strengthening.

All ELG Project Management Capability Assessments consider 4 key “Success Levers” — Governance, Structure, Process and Skills. Each one of these Success Levers is critical to achieving project goals, but we start with Governance and Structure because they provide the underpinning for project success.

Project Governance & Strategic Control

By Project Governance & Strategic Control, we mean the organizational and decision-making context within which the project is functioning. Depending on the type and size of the organization, there will be an appropriate mechanism for corporate oversight, resource allocation and support.

ELG’s Project Management Capability Assessments focus heavily on how well and how consistently your organization uses Strategic Control. Specifically, we will examine your methodology for valuing, prioritizing, selecting and adjusting a portfolio of projects.

We will also review your organization structure and methodology for accomplishing project staffing, project reporting and communications, project sponsorship and oversight and project redirection. If you have a Project Management Office (PMO), we will assess how well it is performing its functions, including the assurance of consistent project management methodologies among projects. If you don’t have a PMO, we will evaluate the need for one and its appropriate functions. (See our article published in the PM Network magazine February 2001, Choosing the Right PMO Setup.”)

Project Structure

By Project Structure, we mean the accountability and authority context within which projects function. We have found that without crystal clear roles, accountabilities and authorities (for everyone on a project and everyone they are accountable to — including project sponsors, steering boards, etc.), projects can drift or perform at sub-optimum levels. This is especially true in today’s increasingly complex environment of cross-functional management, service level agreements, resource pools, program offices, and so on.

We therefore look closely at how project and individual goals and measurements are established and how they are aligned to the organization’s other functional and project goals. We believe we are unique in the way we focus on these Whole Goals — a key underpinning of project management success. We are also unique in the tools and perspective we bring to this subject. (See the description of our “Project Focusing System™”)

Project Management Processes

Once we have determined how project goals and measurements are defined, understood and aligned, within and beyond specific projects, we turn our attention to the tools, techniques and methodologies used for managing projects. Scheduling, budgeting and tracking tools and procedures are particularly important in this phase of the assessment. Without the proper navigation instruments, it’s impossible to keep projects on course. Our assessment will evaluate the effectiveness of your project management tools and procedures and point out improvements (which are suitable for and sustainable in your organization) to maximize their effectiveness.

Project Management Skills

The fourth component of project management capability is the level of project management skill resident in your organization. Project management requires a unique blend of skills, including the Project Management Institute’s 9 “Knowledge Areas,” as well as leadership and the ability to master details while seeing the big picture. Our assessment will evaluate how knowledgeable and skillful your existing and potential project managers and team members are in the art and science of project management and whether additional project management training is called for.

ELG’s Project Management Capability Assessments are accomplished through a series of interviews with your key personnel. The interviews are conducted by experienced ELG consultants, using a proven, proprietary methodology. The interview results are analyzed and integrated by ELG experts into a comprehensive, detailed and specific assessment of the capability of your organization for managing multiple, complex projects. With this assessment in hand, you will have the information you need to maximize the chances for project success.