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We work hard to professionalise our project management

18-08-2014 News UK

Almost every citizen, private business and public authority in Denmark is dependent on the IT solutions and services provided by the Danish Agency for Digitisation – and the rest of the public sector, for that matter. In order to deliver the expected quality on time and within budget it is essential that the agency manage its projects in a professional way.

Professionalisation is an ongoing process in which we continuously work to improve our methods and competencies. At the Danish Agency for Digitisation we are leading the implementation of policy decisions concerning digitization of the public sector. Digitization is not an end in itself but is used to make it simpler and smarter for people and businesses to communicate digitally with the public sector and to optimize workflows in order to provide as efficient a service as possible.

The initiatives vary widely. Some of our key tasks are to procure, deploy and manage the operation of cross-governmental IT systems, run campaigns and analyze the benefits of public sector digitization.

The below mentioned projects illustrate the width of our initiatives and project management is essential in both of them:

Lars Frelle-Petersen 

"We are ambitious when we implement our projects. Virtually everyone in Denmark - whether you are a citizen, business or public authority - rely on us to deliver our products in a good quality, on time and within the agreed budget. If we are to live up to their - and our own – expectations – we need to run our projects professionally, whether they cost 1 or 100 million DKK."

Lars Frelle-Petersen, General-Director 

A high level of professionalism cannot be reached overnight, it is a continuing process of development.

"We use a common project model for all projects with a budget of more than one million DKK and right now we are working to create a better link between financial management and project management. The result so far is that we as management has a very good basis for monitoring projects monthly in order to keep them on track, and it also provides input on where we are short on resources and expertise."
Lars Frelle-Petersen, General-Director.

The project model sets the scene

The approach used for managing projects is directly based on the cross-governmental IT project model and inspired by PRINCE2. The project managers’ use of the model follows some overall principles, but is adapted to the needs of each project.

The task of implementing the model lies in the Executive Secretariat and the Directors follow up on projects each month. Project Managers and heads are supported in both the use of the model and the monthly status reporting by an internal project advisor who has this as his core mission.

"It may seem a little confusing to use the model for the first time, but we make sure that you get the skills and support you need along the way. If you are not familiar with the model at all, it is possible to be educated and we continually provide feedback and advice on how to work with projects. This means that you will develop your skills and competencies as you need them."
Daniel Terp Friis-Pieper, project advisor.

Cross-governmental IT project model

"We have launched this because we know that a systematic approach to project management and governance works. But we are also fully aware that success is not guaranteed because of a good model and competent project managers! Projects by nature challenge the line organization and the traditional decision-making processes and we ensure that our heads are prepared to make the necessary decisions in relation to their projects. We have for instance all been attending a two-day master class in programme management."
Lars Frelle-Petersen, Director.