Cooper Untech10 IT Program Mgmt Final


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ASAE Technology Conference and UNTECH10 case study. Tools and techniques I use to create a healthy project environment and effective governance for the membership systems platform of the Massachusetts Medical Society.

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  • How will we handle questions?Technical support for Citrix? 1-888-259-8414 Key notes from conference:Breaking down silos, culture getting in the way of innovationProject managers help with multi vendor technology implementationsLook for vendors who are open to collaboration
  • So let’s start at the beginning of this journey, the project manager role.
  • So, while the MMS and its Publishing Division is now comfortable with a project framework, the “new” IT project office is much more focused on Relationship managementDeliveryEnablement andStrategy alignment between the business and IT
  • Moving to another great reference: The Handbook of Program ManagementThe successful program manager creates a culture that facilitates the accomplishment of projects. To do that you:Must have credibility and influence in the organization, and what other traits?
  • The formula – accountability plus discipline equals integrity and results in clarityThe most powerful concept for me was to realize that my job is to create clarity:Making business strategy visibleEmphasizing the link between what folks were doing and the business strategy behind itEstablishing roles and responsibilities which helped create accountability across silos, across projectsEstablishing procedures to take in and accomplish workDeveloping or buying the needed skill sets and then sustaining these capabilitiesMost importantly, making our successes visible – and tracking the benefits beyond project completion
  • The program manager must have an ingrained sense of organizational mission:The are leadersThe are visionariesThey build relationshipsAnd they are good at identifying and solving problems
  • What defines program success? It’s about results which require stability, balance, and consistent delivery. But most importantly, HAPPY STAKEHOLDERS. I can never make everyone happy… that’s impossible … but at least I have to give everyone what they need to feel successful….
  • So let’s start at the beginning of this journey, the project manager role.
  • Creating purpose, setting a vision, building relationships means getting a disparate group of stakeholders together moving toward the same goal. Creating a vision and getting buy-in to support it, up down and across the organization. Developing relationships. Dealing with perceptions. Dealing with my own strengths/weaknesses and perceptions. Where to start? This book called Seeing Systems was a great resource to help me set the context of my own behavior. Helping me to realize that much that feels personal is not personal at allHow did I attack dysfunction?How did I make the program look attractive for folks to want to participate?How did I address the needs of the business?How did I deal with silos?How did I get difficult decisions made?How did I deal with my own transformation?I read this book and began to see the world through others … I gained awareness which helped me relate better, negotiate better, empathize better, and navigate the organization better.
  • In dealing with silos -- we do not know what others are experiencing; sometimes we think we do know…we have our beliefs, myths and prejudices which we accept as the truth and become the bases of our actions. Spatial blindness is a source of considerable misunderstanding and conflict.In dealing with baggage -- All current events in system life have a history; this is a coherent tale that has led to this particular point in time…we experience the present but are blind to the complex set of events that have brought us to the present. Blindness to the history of the moment is a source of considerable misunderstanding and conflict.Understanding these two concepts gave me much more patience in dealing with and busting perceptions.
  • Program formula – accountability, clarity, the ability to assess people and situations beyond their appearances:Tops deal with ambiguous issues; unpredictable and held accountable for the success and failures of the system. Are you interacting with executives in a way that reduces their complexity? Do you share responsibility for the system?Bottoms – things are always being done to staff. How can I get their involvement and reduce their vulnerability?Middles – you want what they don’t have; they need to go to others to get it. How can I help a middle get what I need?Customers – get inadequate attention and interested in quality service and results. How do I decrease the customer’s experience of neglect?
  • Exercise How do I make my interactions with stakeholders more consistently positive than negative? Back to our trusty handbook.Key is, know who you are dealing with and have a strategy for dealing with them. Employ your stakeholder analysis skills from your projects and apply it to the program. What is their influence and what is their interest level? What motivates them? Develop rules of engagement: assess, strategize, engage:Here are some strategies from the book to deal with the variety of stakeholders:Meddling is always inserting themselves into decisions, processes or meetings where their presence is not required. Is this a lack of trust? Building trust begins with communication and demonstrated competence. Takes time. Is this person a control freak? Overwhelm them with communication and tasks. Real work often makes people invisible!Overbearing – uses power or personality to dominate. Use buffering techniques to minimize exposure.Poor – someone who has interests or is impacted by the program, but who has no significant budget or authority. They are at a power disadvantage and will use influence and politics to protect their interests or achieve objectives. Advocate for those who can’t and try to identify how the poor stakeholder’s objectives align or conflict. Every stakeholder can positively or negatively impact program success (money doesn’t buy compliance).Untrustworthy – someone who plays both sides, doesn’t stand by their word, refuses to document or be personally accountable. Program manager should ensure that all important communication be documented and have traceability. If possible, work to remove or disempower untrustworthy stakeholders (easier said than done).Indecisive – never makes decisions in a timely manner and cannot remain committed to previous decisions. Program manager must set up processes and structures that clearly communicate when a decision is required and the impact of the decision not being made. Establish a metric of lost time (or other impacts) due to delayed decisions. Unavailable – is always too busy to participate when their input or approval is required. Strategies include getting the stakeholder to delegate decision authority to someone capable and trustworthy, find virtual mechanisms for the stakeholder to participate without requiring physical presence, maintained scheduled meetings to minimize the need for ad hoc gatherings, publish meetings well in advance, access the stakeholder in informal settings (lunch breaks, walks)Ideal stakeholder: shows an interest, is available when necessary, is willing to be accountable, prioritizes requests, helps motivate, is flexible when needed.
  • Goal is to relate the best practices to this case
  • Formula - Creating a sense of purpose; defining success; getting buy-in and support from above.About three years ago when I started focusing on this area, there was much dysfunction, an entrenched silo mentality, lots of finger pointing, distrust between the business and IT, and projects were difficult to accomplish due to a lack of accountability and the overwhelming emphasis of technology resources to the publishing side of the business.With the support of the CIO, I created an executive steering group to focus on common goals, common ground. Articulate a mission. Most importantly identify an alignment between the technology and business goals. This was a critical step in being able to launch projects while balancing operations and keeping everyone’s concerns in check.
  • This is how we got to common ground and built a vision for our platform. Used outside experts, built a case, and started to answer tough questions: Do we stay with our system or abandon it? Can it meet the needs of two very differing constituents (web site versus membership CRM database). Will the system continue to support our changing business needs?
  • Formula - defining success. Map to capability. Setting up a vision that folks could buy into. So we decided that we should invest in an upgrade. With all the complexities of our situation this particular upgrade mapped out to healthy 9-12 month effort.The most pressing business driver was delivering a better website experience for our member, and the capability to push more services online.So, for the first time I separated myself from a stated project goal (upgrade the entire platform) and went for business results (get the web site done). Which meant we had to convince folks to hold off on the upgrade and program on the current platform, and make the case that this investment could be utilized on the upgraded platform down the road. And guess what, with the economic downturn, the upgrade project had to go on hold. So by making this decision to phase our approach, we got the most important business need met.
  • Create a sense of purpose, create clear lines of accountability, define clear processes for work intake and management, resource planning, develop organizational capability. Scarce resources mean we have to make every effort count, utilize our resources effectively, create a sense of accountability. I spend a lot of time selling the benefits of working in this program, that it is a great career move for someone (hands on experience, new opportunities, visibility).
  • Formula – create a discipline; establish a healthy project environment, identify a visionGet project planning under control – map it back to strategy, agree on what is in the pipeline and timing. What technology underpinnings need to be in place to support business objectives?
  • Formula – create discipline; establish a process for operational support; balance operations with development. Visibility of workWorkflow of tasksMetrics for deliverability and availability of resources
  • Program Success factor – stability in operations, efficiencies, balance between operations and developmentNeeded to help the group prioritize and understand that the overlap impacts our ability to process quickly and/or get projects done.
  • Formula – more discipline and governance
  • A key enablement for the Program, is a stable well understood budget process. I have to be really good at spending other people’s money! I advocate with and for the business.We budget operational dollars within departments versus a pool of capital dollars. So that means we all compete for capital dollars (need a good business case), and once a project completes who “owns” the ongoing costs?
  • A key enablement for the Program, is a stable well understood budget process. I have to be really good at spending other people’s money! I advocate with and for the business.We budget operational dollars within departments versus a pool of capital dollars. So that means we all compete for capital dollars (need a good business case), and once a project completes who “owns” the ongoing costs?
  • Program managers must have the experience and ability to assess people and situations beyond their appearances. Always trying to stress the skill of identifying red flags. Address issues before they spin out of control. I met with my PMs. Asked them to outline their top 3 risks. They generally focused on meeting schedule and milestones. They asked me to critique based on my knowledge. As a program manager, what am I worried about? I tended to identify risks that not only impact the current project, but would likely plague future projects and the program in general (like the unavailable sponsor or lack of organizational commitment to properly resource these efforts).Talk about the concept of calculated failure points – exploit every opportunity to reinforce or shape the lens of the program – calculated failure points can help drive change. Kind of like circuit breaker. Example of chunking the project in phases, in case the funding dries up a good example.
  • Organizational capability How do I make everyone aware (especially outside providers, new team members, temporary help) what is important to the program, what is important to know about the program?
  • Organizational capability. Supporting processes. Make IT be more strategic and knowledgeable about the business. Verify and communicate alignment, set a vision and strategy for investment. Program Office contributes:Facilitate the overall strategy and communications process.Utilize existing relationships, program meetings and project-level steering to identify business needs.Contribute its business process expertise to inform enterprise technology planning.Business area portfoliosAggregated resource plansRoles and responsibilitiesIntake proceduresAssessment of project fit at initiation (discovery)Clear business success criteria for project effortsFramework for project executionIncorporate service level agreementsFeedback mechanismsInput to performance reviews Assess business area needs and input Assess technical staff input Assess the enterprise technology Communicate vision Program Portfolio Identification Capacity Plan Strategic Assessment Measuring Success Operational Assessment Performance Management
  • Importance to let IT staff understand the critical metrics that business measures and what is important to them.Can use the example of my work with a strategy consultant on how IT should categorize and track its work to show value and manage costs:Baseline operationsEnhancementsInnovation
  • A good portfolio process is able to evaluate a project for fit. Recently, BITS Directors created a ranking system to score projects relative to its strategic fit in the BITS portfolio. This ranking system was adapted from one used by the Ad Sales Steering Committee to effectively prioritize its projects. Includes criteria in the first column followed by the criteria weight. Then six factors within each criteria that represent multipliers where factor 1 is least significant to factor 6 which is most significant. The highest score a project can receive in this model is 270 points (6x10+6x8+6x7+6x6+6x5+6x4+6x3+6x2).
  • Corporate systems program. Methodical decision making for when to upgrade or enhance key systems: regular maintenance decommission notice dependency to a strategic effort or business changeVertical slice informs variety and scope of effortsHorizontal slice informs length of a particular effort
  • Highlight the key tools that I use to manage my programs. Note how MS Project is not even listed! Atlassian Confluence and Jira
  • To be effective and have influence - Project managers need to relate well in two dimensions: They must understand how to help a team shape work so that the end goal remains in sight Linking project outcomes to business goals Understanding pace and activities Maintaining forward momentumThey must be effective in managing relationships up, down and across the organization Getting decisions made Breaking down silos Communicating effectivelyA challenge in developing project managers is to help them see the importance of being in tune with how others “experience” their projects. It is about results, but it is also about relationships. The stronger your relationships the more you can accomplish.
  • This is my goal for what you’ll take away from today’s presentation. And keep in mind, I’m talking about program management through the lens of an Information Technology professional. What does that mean?There are other roles in our organization that sit directly in the business like the product manager or the business general manager. They are very concerned about business development, profit and loss. IT is very concerned with business-technology alignment, making sure that business goals are met through good technology planning and delivery.So we have slightly different focuses, but, I think you’ll find the concepts in this presentation are apropos of good program management regardless of where you sit in the organization.
  • Cooper Untech10 IT Program Mgmt Final

    1. 1. Building Consensus: IT Program Management<br />Friday, February 12th10:00 AM for UNTECH10<br />Content Leader:<br />Bonnie Cooper PMP, IT Program Director <br />Massachusetts Medical Society<br />Thank you for joining us. The webinar will begin shortly.<br />If you experience technical difficulties at any time, please contact <br />1-888-259-8414 <br /><br />Connecting Great Ideas and Great People<br />
    2. 2. Key Learning Takeaways<br />A case study for how program management practices can facilitate technology decision making.<br />Finding the synergy between operational, project, and program activity<br />Concrete examples of tools and techniques that drive program-level decisions.<br />2<br />
    3. 3. The MMS is Multi Faceted<br />Systems<br />Applications<br />Data<br />Processes<br />Web Sites<br />Corporate Services: IT, HR and Finance<br />3<br />
    4. 4. The Challenge<br />Develop a healthier relationship between IT and Member Program Services<br />70 % of IT resources focused on publishing<br />Membership system lacked mission critical status<br />A silo mentality within the business<br />Lack of vendor relationship management<br />Lack of prioritization (projects and operations)<br />Focus shifting to online (web enabled) activities<br />4<br />
    5. 5. Leveraging Best Practices<br />Building the program<br />5<br />
    6. 6. References <br />The Handbook of Program Management: How to Facilitate Project Success with Optimal Program Management by James T. Brown (ISBN-13: 978-0-07-149472-4)<br />Seeing Systems: Unlocking the Mysteries of Organizational Life by Barry Oshry <br /> (ISBN 1-881052-99-0)<br />6<br />
    7. 7. MMS IT Program and Portfolio Team<br />Mission: provides a project management framework that bridges business strategy and technology to achieve successful business results.<br />Two Key Principles:<br />Provide an efficient and clear method for communicating business priorities into IT.<br />Provide clear communication into business units regarding new technologies and maintenance activities that might impact their business and operations.<br />7<br />
    8. 8. My Role as IT Program Manager<br />A successful program manager creates a culture that facilitates the accomplishment of projects.<br />8<br />
    9. 9. The Program Formula<br />Accountability plus discipline equals integrity and results in clarity<br />Creating a sense of purpose<br />Defining clear lines of accountability<br />Adherence to established processes<br />Developing organizational capability<br />Defining success<br />9<br />
    10. 10. The Program Manager Role<br /><ul><li>The program manager needs to have an ingrained sense of organizational mission:</li></ul>must lead and have the presence of a leader<br />must have a vision and strategy for the long term organizational improvement<br />must be a relationship builder<br />must have the experience and ability to assess people and situations beyond their appearances<br />10<br />
    11. 11. Program Success Factors<br /><ul><li>Stability of operations and operations becoming more efficient
    12. 12. Balance between operations and development
    13. 13. Projects delivered on time and on budget
    14. 14. Clear lines of accountability
    15. 15. Stable, well understood budget process
    16. 16. Happy stakeholders
    17. 17. Constant alignment with the organizational vision</li></ul>11<br />
    18. 18. Seek to Understand <br />Building the program<br />12<br />
    19. 19. Where to Start?<br />What would we see if we could look into the worlds of others? <br />What new possibilities would open up for us? <br />In organizations, much of the time we think we are dealing person-to-person when, in fact, we are dealing context-to-context.<br />13<br />
    20. 20. Seeing Beyond Appearances<br />Baggage<br />Silos<br />Temporal blindness is about seeing the present without the past.<br />Spatial blindness is about seeing the part without the whole.<br />14<br />
    21. 21. Seek To Engage By Understanding<br />Topsare living in a world of complexity and responsibility (executives).<br />Bottomsare living in a world of invisibility and vulnerability (staff).<br />Middlesare living in a tearing world pulled between you and others, between requests and fulfillment (line managers and project managers).<br />Customersare living in a world of neglect (IT clients).<br />15<br />
    22. 22. Building Relationships<br />Effective stakeholder management<br />Meddling<br />Overbearing<br />Poor<br />Untrustworthy<br />Indecisive<br />Unavailable<br />Doing what is necessary to develop and control relationships with all individuals the program impacts. <br />16<br />
    23. 23. Finding clarity for Membership Program Services<br />Case study of a program<br />17<br />
    24. 24. Membership Program Services Technology Governance<br />18<br />
    25. 25. Member Program ServicesExpert Guidance<br />October 2007<br />March 2008<br />September 2008<br />19<br />
    26. 26. Membership Program ServicesConsensus: Show A Way Forward<br />January 2009<br />January 2010<br />June 2010<br />iMIS 10.4<br />iMIS 15<br />iMIS 15.1<br />Develop on current CMS platform (cold fusion)<br />Fix Transactions<br />Move to .NET CMS<br />Leverage investment<br />Leverage product functions<br />Expedite<br />Visual of an 18 month plan<br />20<br />
    27. 27. Member Program ServicesTechnology Accountability<br />21<br />
    28. 28. Membership Program Services Project Roadmap<br />22<br />
    29. 29. Membership Program Services Operations<br />23<br />
    30. 30. Membership Program Services Make Overlap Activity Visible<br />24<br />
    31. 31. Member Program ServicesProcess Discipline<br />Executive Steering every 5 weeks<br />Review projects and key operational activity<br />Key decision(s) escalation point<br />Weekly back office system, web site, and IT operational team meetings (discuss resources, priorities, schedules)<br />Wiki sites for documentation and status updates<br />System to request and track ad hoc tasks, bugs, issues<br />Project methodology (PM, structure, schedule)<br />25<br />
    32. 32. Membership Program ServicesFunding Projects<br />Participate in the budget cycle for future funding<br />Understand Capital versus Operating dynamic<br />Learn and support the procurement process<br />Participate in maintenance renewals<br />Identify who can sanction outside work<br />Track vendor estimates to actuals (lessons)<br />Help the business justify AND make cost effective decisions<br />26<br />
    33. 33. Membership Program ServicesWays to Build Consensus<br />Two artifacts to help build consensus (use handouts):<br />Negotiate for a critical resource by preparing a rationale:<br />A project charter to clarify a business goal and scope of solution.<br />27<br />
    34. 34. Support for the Program<br />Organizational capability<br />28<br />
    35. 35. Be on Alert for Red Flags<br />“What are your project’s top three problems? If you can’t identify them within three snaps of your fingers, then you’re not an effective leader…..the problems in your top-three list should be worked off within days, not weeks or months”<br />PM Network July 2009<br />29<br />
    36. 36. Know the Business Cycle<br />30<br />
    37. 37. Promote IT-Business Alignment<br />31<br />
    38. 38. IT Enterprise PlanningBusiness Goal Sync<br />32<br />
    39. 39. IT Portfolio Ranking FactorsWhat is Your Score?<br />33<br />
    40. 40. Corporate Systems PlanningBe Mission Critical<br />34<br />
    41. 41. A Program Manager’s Toolkit<br />Collaboration Tools<br />Atlassian Wiki portal (team sites)<br />Atlassian Jira for unified IT work tracking<br />Adobe Connect Pro (virtual meetings and training)<br />SharePoint (team sites and blogs)<br />Equipped conference rooms<br />MS Office applications<br />Templates for consistency<br />Access to external knowledge (blogs, e newsletters)<br />35<br />
    42. 42. Maintain Dual Focus<br />36<br />
    43. 43. Key Learning Takeaways<br />A case study for how program management practices can facilitate technology decision making.<br />Finding the synergy between operational, project, and program activity<br />Concrete examples of tools and techniques that drive program-level decisions.<br />37<br />
    44. 44. Contact Information<br />Bonnie Cooper<br />IT Program Director<br />Massachusetts Medical Society<br /><br />781-434-7050<br />38<br />