Interim PPSO Manager (ISEB PPSO)

If your organisation is in the process of, or thinking about setting up an Interim PPSO or permanent PPSO Function (Programme and Project Support Office) and you have a need for an Interim PPSO Manager then you have come to the right place as an Interim PPSO Manager from KPS Consultants will deliver. We have published some value add information below which may help you decide whether you wish to place your Interim PPSO Manager requirements with KPS. What ever your decision we hope that you find the information of use.

The Purpose and Role of an Interim PPSO Manager

The purpose/role of an Interim PPSO Manager is to establish and manage a team of skilled programme and project resources that form a PPSO and to manage the framework within which all allocated programmes and/or projects will be supported.

Lets define an organisational entity before we go any further, you will appreciate why a little later:

  • PPSO = Programme and Project Support Office

The Interim PPSO Manager plays an absolutely vital role interfacing with Programme Managers, Project Managers and Project Boards. The Interim PPSO Manager will establish, manage and deploy a set of PPM support services aimed at supporting the Programme and Project Manager(s) during the planning and execution of their programmes and projects. PPSO support services may include management of plans, configuration management, change control, quality control, risks and issues, reporting progress and providing specialist advice and guidance pertaining to best practice programme and project management (PPM) tools and techniques.

The Interim PPSO Manager's role is also to establish and deploy best practice management standards/methods to ensure correct, efficient and coherent use across all programmes and projects.

The Interim PPSO Manager role is usually referred to as one of the following:

  • Programme and Project Support Office Manager (PPSO Manager) or Head of Programme and Project Support Office (Head of PPSO)
    - Valid as far as KPS is concerned.
  • Programme/Project Office Manager (PO Manager) or Head of Programme/Project Office (Head of PO)
    - Does not emphasise the entity as being a support function.
  • Programme/Project Management Office Manager (PMO Manager) or Head of Programme/Project Management Office (Head of PMO)
    - Ambiguous, again particularly in the absence of the word 'support' and could imply that the entity is more senior and more accountable for the programmes or projects which it serves than for instance a Programme Manager or indeed the board i.e. the focus being on the word 'management' as opposed to 'support'!

Confused yet? You should be!

For this very reason and to avoid confusion KPS usually refers to this organisational entity as being a PPSO and hence why KPS refers to the role as either an 'Interim PPSO Manager' or 'Head of PPSO'. Both of the latter are equally valid role titles and describe the role both in line with best practices and in a simple manner. However fancy you make the title look/sound is irrelevant as far as the business case is concerned and needless to say will not improve programme or project delivery! From experience, It is worth noting that Head PMO is also very popular throughout the industry.

KPS is not in the business of reinventing the wheel and thus adheres to existing best practice guidelines. We feel that best practice methods can be pragmatically adapted to any business environment or need. One mustn't give up simply because the methods don't fit, an experienced interim PPSO Manager will make them fit!

General responsibilities of an Interim PPSO Manager

The Interim PPSO Manager has a collective responsibility for the provision of support services to programmes and projects that fall within the remit of the PPSO team. Some of the general responsibilities of the Interim PPSO Manager are to:

  • Establish and manage the Programme and Project Support office (PPSO), ensuring the PPSO team has specialist skills in one or more of the following: planning, configuration management, change control, quality management, risk and issue management and reporting.
  • Ensure an appropriate level of administrative support is provided to Programme Managers and Project Managers via the PPSO.
  • Create a programme and project management culture to improve the outcome of programmes/projects.
  • Provide technical expertise in the use of programme and project management techniques and/or software.
  • Promote the use of programme and project management best practice methodologies, such as ISEB PPSO.
  • Understand current and future business requirements and work with Programme Managers, Project Managers and Change Managers to establish plans, milestones and priorities.
  • Identify, track and evaluate the realisation of business benefits and maximise benefits on an ongoing basis.
  • Monitor progress of programme and project delivery and take action to improve efficiency and effectiveness.
  • Use product-based approach to planning and define programme / project activities, outcomes, scope, milestones and priorities.
  • Ensure that all change initiatives are implemented in a structured manner using agreed methodologies that combine best practice and are fit for purpose.
  • Advise the Programme and/or Project Manager of any risks that are likely to affect delivery of the Programme and Project's objectives and to be part of the risk management process.
  • Analyse and evaluate impact of proposed changes on scope and report findings and solutions.
  • In the absence of a Programme or Project Manager, the PPSO Manager has sufficient knowledge and skills to cover for the Programme/Project Manager.

How can a KPS Interim help you with Programme and Project Support Office (PPSO) Management?

If you are looking to recruit a PPSO Manager then a KPS Interim can serve as your Interim PPSO Manager for what ever duration your interim PPSO manager recruitment needs may be. Indeed we see this role as being one of our original programme and project management capabilities upon which the concept and decision of incorporating KPS Consultants Ltd as a company was made.

KPS Consultants have many years of experience fulfilling roles as an Interim PPSO Manager. Through our encounters across various industries we have come to understand what approach works effectively and similarly what doesn't work.

Being an Interim PPSO Manager requires the right approach to formulate/establish a team of programme and project experts that serve as a great benefit to the organisation rather than an obstacle or hindrance. With KPS Consultants you can be certain that we have the right approach and influential skills to defuse any initial resistance when establishing or managing a Programme and Project Support Office (PPSO). The method we use is not rocket science and done by simply demonstrating the vast benefits of a programme and/or project support office to both your programme and/or project management community and the whole organisation. One core objective of ours is to disperse and share knowledge of best practice programme and project management, we feel that an interim PPSO Manager is empowered to do just that and have demonstrated this in several organisations with superior results and dramatically increased productivity.

Additionally, whilst serving as your interim programme and/or project office support manager our consultant will focus on providing the necessary guidance and support to help you strengthen the control and management of your programmes and projects. This will be achieved by challenging any non-effective processes and where necessary streamlining or introducing new processes that will improve productivity and consistency throughout your organisation and its programmes or projects.

In summary our key capabilities behind the successful delivery of managing a Programme and Project Support Office (PPSO) are as follows:

  • Ability to work and manage a multicultural environment, where team members may be in different locations worldwide.
  • Developing the level of project management skills and capabilities within the Programme and Project Support Office (PPSO) and across organisations generally - in line with best practice programme and project management techniques /processes.
  • Maintaining and building a respected and coveted team of skilled project management resources with a reputation for excellence in programme and project delivery.
  • Experience of managing a team of Programme and Project Support Coordinators that can help deliver large, complex programmes and/or projects encompassing multiple work packages.
  • Ability to work and consult with internal/external contacts at a range of levels in a constructive and helpful way, offering advice, as appropriate to achieve Project milestones.
  • Ability to develop relationships with key programme and project stakeholders to establish trust, credibility and respect.
  • Experienced in using Programme/Project management tools to schedule, plan, track and correct Programme and Project performance.
  • Provide effective communication/information in a way that is accessible and easily understood.
  • Ability to motivate other Programme and Project Support Office members, set achievable objectives and take responsibility for providing constructive feedback.

If you would like to discuss your Interim PPSO Management needs or have a requirement for an interim PPSO Manager, please contact KPS.

For details on our PPSO Implementation Capability, please see the KPS Consulting CoE.

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