A division of the bank had identified that some IT projects were becoming too focused on delivery, due to lack of some key skills in the project management community. Project managers were not confident in challenging the business during project initiation and planning and as a result, many projects began with unrealistic business expectations or had regular revisions. These changes often happened in 'mid-flight' and often ended up with the project being deemed a failure by the business. Rework of projects was costing the bank a significant amount of money.
HBOS asked CITI to join them in their 'Right First Time' programme, aimed at delivering performance improvements in the setting up, structuring and planning of projects.
- The first stage of our involvement was a series of workshops aimed at developing roles and responsibilities, and gauging levels of competence within the project community
- In the second stage, masterclasses were arranged to transfer knowledge of good practice in project initiation, planning, stakeholder engagement, project roles and responsibilities, and how to focus on a project's business outcomes
- The third and final stage saw workshops based on current projects being used as vehicles for practicing and embedding the necessary skills.
The value of the 'Right First Time' initiative was set out at the outset: there had to be clearer definition of projects, more engaged stakeholders, and less time and money spent on project rework. After three years, a senior executive stated they had audited that the level of rework costs had been reduced by 40%. When applied to the total budget for IT projects in the division in question, this amounted to several £m.