One of the authors of the Gower Handbook of Program Management is Paul Rayner and a few years ago he conducted a survey which showed that while the world was moving closer to a common theory about what Program Governance is all about in theory, the reality was very different.
The UK Office of Government Commerce (OGC) defines Program Governance as "the functions, processes and procedures that define how the program is set up, managed and controlled". The OGC recommends a 10 step online journey to Program Governance:
- Set up the program organization structures;
- Setting up the physical program environment;
- Risk management and issue resolution;
- HR management;
- Procurement and contract management;
- Program communications;
- Reporting, monitoring and control;
- Information management;
- Maintain business as usual;
- End of tranche reviews.
It's all very well going through the motions of setting up effective governance, but what are some of the benefits of all this effort?
Common Program and Project performance failures can be avoided; and the portfolio of Programs and Projects can be optimized. Also staff, customers and suppliers can be motivated through better communication and risks can be minimized and Benefits maximized.
Looking at the painful side of not having Program Governance; the organization will stand a far greater chance of suffering the consequences of lack of:
- a clear link between the Program and the organization's strategic priorities;
- clear senior management ownership and leadership;
- effective stakeholder engagement;
- skills and a proven approach to Program and Project management;
- understanding and contact with the supply industry at senior levels;
- effective Program / Project team integration between clients, the supplier team and the supply chain.
It is also likely to suffer from too little attention to breaking development and implementation into manageable steps and evaluation of proposals could tend to be driven by price rather than long-term value for money.
Far too many organizations have yet to take Program Governance seriously and sometimes have a few things to learn. Those that do, are without doubt taking a proactive approach to ensuring their program success and enjoying the benefit of people who know what they're doing.
You can find links to additional resources which you may find helpful at the author's web site.
Source by Rob Llewellyn