Programmes/Projects

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Programme and Project Management

Good reasons for comming to Summetria for  your next  Programme or Project Manager are:

  • Breadth of industry experience.
  • Technical expertise in the combined areas of digital, eCommerce and IT  (you may need all three of these)
  • Extensive experience in leading the adoption of new business and operational models
  • Professional stakeholder management and reporting skills
  • Effective risk management
  • Sensible day rates will fit within a sensible budget.

Our principle consultant   Chris Molloy  has been retained on contract as a Programme Manager and a Project Manager for many household name brands including the BBC, BskyB,  FiveTV, The AA, Saga Group, BAA, DHL, TUI, Barclays and Royal Mail.

Programme management and project management have become the core business services provided by Summetria since Chris is now employed full-time by the company.  We work with multi-disciplinary teams from digital, IT and across the business and operations to  successfully deliver projects and programmes.  The Directors Blog contains  a showcase  of many of the  projects and programmes that have been managed and led by our Principle Consultant over the past 15 years or so.:... Read more>.

How we operate

We take a meticulous approach to planning and preparations for any project launch. We ensure that fault reporting, bug management and  optimisation tools and processes are in place as the success of online services are either augmented or restricted by our ability to fix and optimise the service. We will also work closely with online marketing and social media teams to manage campaigns and communications, again to support the success of the launch.  We will manage operational and business integration (including call centre) to ensure that all connected staff and partners are aware of changes to digital and operations and what this means for the customer.

We advocate best practice for all projects and programmes. We will use your preferred project management methodology, this can be waterfall (Prince2) or Agile.  If you don’t have a preference then we will use a blended approach to provide you with the visibility and control you need over your projects and programmes.

We will use which ever analysis, design and build methodology is most favoured by you. If there is no preference then we will take an iterative customer centred approach.  and will  leverage customer insight to inform design options for the new/optimised customer experience.

We have worked completely Agile and will do if that is your preference.  We have found that no two Agile projects are alike. A key principle of working Agile project is flexibility.  Another key principle (and massive business benefit) is to deliver a working solution in the minimum time, maximising efficiency and providing and initial ‘Minimum Viable Product’ (MVP) to the customer. This MVP can then be iteratively developed towards the targeted full product or service. To work in an Agile way is to benefit from the  relative strengths and mixed skill-set of the team.

Complex projects and programmes rely commitment from many people with diverse skill sets:

  • The team structures, for most projects we have delivered to date, have comprised our client’s internal expertise combined with 3rd parties who provide additional specialist domain knowledge; For example digital design and build agencies, systems integrators, digital advertising agencies, affiliates and internet/website hosting companies and leading edge eCommerce-tools vendors providing behavioral targeting, multivariate testing, SEO, analytics and session replay.
  • We are happy to work with suppliers on our client’s PSL, alternatively we have built up a network of specialist agencies who we trust and have in the past provide the niche expertise required.  If our clients don’t have the right specialists in house, such as technical, design, creative or test expertise, then we can either outsource, or go through specialist recruitment agencies who focus in these fields.

Our preference to adopt an Agile approach for all ‘front-end’ business or customer facing development activities and expect to be  beldning a more waterfall approach for back-end integration / systems / IT development. A typical project plan can include (and are not limited to):

  • Confirm business outcomes, scope, budget and strategy.
  • Confirm current architecture landscape, governance, business and ops processes and product/services management.
  • Stakeholder mapping to current products and services.
  • Determine who the users are, ideally confirming personas
  • Analyse how the existing products and services are used (and by who) and determine strenghts, weaknesses, opportunities and threats
  • Create Hypothesis for new user experience with outline user ‘stories’ (grouped into  epics and  including key features)
  • Test hypothesis: Using scamps and walk-throughs, story boards,  mock-ups, prototypes, user testing, A/B test or multivariate testing.
  • In parallel to all of the above, we are constantly  checking to ensure we are still working towards desired business outcomes and budgetary constraints to ensure that we minimise time spent exploring initiatives that don’t fit within the overall business strategy.
  • Determine business cases for  various design options (given the user insights and desired business outcomes) including outline plans and estimates.
  • Establish the full project team (inhouse and suppliers), set up required Scrums for delivery phase.
  • Plan and manage IT and hosting  changes and manage procurement processes
  • Plan and manage new enabling services and tools such as hosting, development environments, test tools, configuration management and release management tools etc
  • Manage the story backlog

PRINCE2 as a guiding framework for maintaining control over our projects.

We are strong on Agile. We have been promoting the use of DSDM since the late 90s, over the last 10 years we have fully embraced SCRUM as the preferred Agile method.

We will still be comfortable working to Waterfall / Gating methods as required.

We have experience in setting up project office and rolling out standards and methodologies for controlling and delivering domestic, regional and global projects and programmes for clients ranging from SMEs to Fortune 500 global blue-chip companies.

Partners, Supplier Management and Outsourcing

Whether you are new to outsourcing and looking for guidance and leadership, or experienced and just need a safe pair of hands to engage, we will be able to assist. We will take a structured and methodical approach to the project and can either cover all phases or just engage in part of the process.

We have extensive experience in outsourcing, contracts, commercials and partner management. We will work with internal legal and finance teams in negotiations, agreeing SLAs and setting up contracts and commercials. We will provide these expertise through the professional services of our Principle Consultant.  He has extensive experience of selecting and managing partners and suppliers (onshore and offshore) to  deliver products and services  into a variety of domestic, international and global projects.

Most projects and all programmes that our Principle Consultant has delivered  over the past ten years, he has taken responsibilities for supplier selection and outsourcing of at least one of the following:

  • Digital design and optimisation
  • web development
  • application development
  • testing
  •  Hosting  and managed service options, including
  • Software as a Service (SaaS)
  • Infrastructurer as a Service (IaaS)
  • Support and maintenance (including the setting up and management of SLAs and contracts)
  • Online marketing
  • User Testing

Without exception, all programmes and projects we have delivered for our clients have combined in-house and external/outsourced services.  More about our  Principle Consultant’s  past assignments and outsourcing experience  can be found on the Directors Blog under  ‘Where I’ve worked’. One of the highest impact outsource projects can be found  under ‘Energy’ covering IT outsource for BOC, the industrial gases giant.

Whether you are new to outsourcing and looking for guidance and leadership, or experienced and just need a safe pair of hands to engage, we will be able to assist. We will take a structured and methodical approach to the project and can either cover all phases or just engage in part of the process.

Scoping to RFP: We have taken responsibility several times to manage the early stages of an outsourced proposition, confirming scope and identifying key stakeholders, exploring feasibility and outline costs, researching options, confirming outline business case. We will go on to establish the team, steering, governance and working groups, qualify scope, establish success criteria and begin initial exploration with suppliers. In most cases this matures into a full RFP (Request for Proposals) and supplier selection.

Supplier selection and Outsource Integration: This will involve running an RFP to select the most appropriate product vendor and (if required) systems integrator. To produce an RFP, all business, operational and IT requirements will be fully understood and documented and project plans in place. Supplier response, evaluation and selection will lead into commercial negotiations and implementation planning. New target operating models, business integration, controls, governance and reporting will all be set up. Infrastructure, environments, access controls, tools and technology, business and operational processes will all be set-up and agreed.Planned service transition will be pre-empted by agreement on performance management methods and SLAs.

More background on our Principle Consultant

Chris worked in various IT  management and leadership posts as a permanent employee for  several well-known brands prior to establishing this company, he enjoyed a track record of success in both strategy and delivery roles, managing projects and leading programmes.   Chris has extended his experience into eCommerce and digital over the last 10 years, often leading initiatives based on emerging technologies. Responsibilities have typically comprised multiple concurrent work-streams including application development, product integration, web development,  infrastructure deployment and configuration. Project assignments have usually encompassed operational and business processes transformation.

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If you are considering embarking on a project or programme any time soon, then contact us now for an exploratory discussion.
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Related links, for more information on:

  • Specific assignments, projects and programmes
  • Sector experience
  • Services we provide
  • About us
  • About Chris Molloy