Project Management Capability Uplift

Project Management Capability Uplift

Background

The Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning (DELWP) is a State-based government agency that brings together Victoria’s planning, local government, environment, energy, suburban development, forests, emergency management, climate change and water functions into a single division to strengthen connections between the environment, community, industry and economy.

DELWP is committed to supporting Victoria’s natural built environment to ensure economic growth and liveable, sustainable and inclusive communities that are resilient to the impacts of climate change.

DELWP 2020 is the strategy that guides the department on how it delivers water, energy, environment, fire and emergency management, climate change, planning, suburban development and local government services in an integrated way. It is reviewed regularly to ensure the work aligns with government priorities.

This work is supported by corporate services, enabling delivery of key projects through finance and planning, business and executive support, legal services, communications, IT and People and Culture.

As such, adaptability, planning and efficiency are critical components of running any number of projects across its multiple portfolios.

DELWP’s senior executive team identified project management capability development as essential in enabling DELWP to deliver the goals set out in their DELWP 2020 strategy and achieve their goal of becoming a high-performing organisation.

Solution & Approach

To build and maintain this capability across multiple functions and all levels, DELWP recently partnered with PM-Partners group’s training and capability arm to facilitate a pre-designed training package to support the capability uplift in fundamental project management skills. This training focused particularly on the DELWP project lifecycle, and how, through the use of their Integrated Project Management (IPM) system, DELWP can manage projects effectively and report appropriately.

The purpose of the training program was to achieve three goals:
  1. Build or consolidate a fundamental understanding of project management
  2. Understand the DELWP project lifecycle and key governance requirements
  3. Identify techniques, templates and tools to manage, control and deliver projects
This comprised 38 training sessions attended by approximately 650 staff from all groups including Corporate Services, Energy Environment & Climate Change, Forest Fire and Regions, Local Infrastructure, Planning and Water & Catchments.

Outcomes

PM-Partners group worked with its team of knowledgeable, experienced facilitators to provide an open and engaging style of training, with some internal pre-work required by attendees.

Attendee feedback noted the experience of the facilitators, as well as the format of sharing ‘war stories’ to help individuals learn from real examples from the diverse range of project management experience in the room. Approximately 77% of attendees rated the content as ‘fully’ or ‘mostly’ valuable to their role, with the remainder citing the training was partially relevant.

Through the training, DELWP has narrowed the gap initially identified amongst groups in the need for a solid fundamental understanding of project management, a project’s life cycle including the importance of identifying and revisiting its objectives and tools available. The program has also brought awareness on the use and benefit of tracking projects in IPM. This has resulted in a common feedback trend amongst participants who now have an appetite for further knowledge/training of Sycle, the department’s integrated online system designed to help manage business performance, risks, audits and projects.

“Project Management Fundamentals was well presented by PM-Partners group and was run a good pace while giving a comprehensive overview of project management with worthwhile practical exercises in a range of groups,” said an attendee at DELWP. “We appreciated the opportunity to train as a group and collectively reflect on the challenges we face as an agency, then find practical solutions to resolve them that suit our organisation and functions specifically. It gave many of our team greater confidence in applying the broad principles and methodologies to everyday work.”

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