Program & Project Management

Similar to the role of Project Manager, a Program Manager is responsible for designing, coordinating and improving the internal and external programs of an organization. Program Managers work across a range of industries to deliver programs that align with the organization's strategic vision.

he role of a program manager is to act as a coordinator for an organization's projects. They supervise and organize activities and ensure that project goals align with the company's objectives.

Bradsworth's Definition of Program Management

This definition shares all of the elements that are common to the first two

definitions. However, it goes beyond them in two important dimensions.

First, the projects are “related’. That is, there is some linking bond, contents,

direction, which they all share; and which excludes other projects that do not

share this “link”. Without this “link”, it might be possible to randomly select 10

projects, and declare them a program, by managing them together.

 Second, while sharing the common element of implied overall leadership

and control, this element is made explicit by the use of the term “integrated

management”. This states (rather than implies) that the projects within the

boundary of the Program are managed together, as a unit.

Tackling Large Projects

Many enterprise IT and business organizations find that they need to tackle large, complex efforts that combine the delivery of software elements, new and changed business models and overall changes to organizational structure and capabilities. In some instances, within enterprise business organizations, these efforts have little (or no) software components.

Typically, these efforts involve planning and carrying out a number of parallel projects —that is, multiple work streams with their own requirements, and expected results which are components in an overall needed outcome. Managers are finding that “traditional” project-management approaches fall short for such undertakings (some of these shortfalls will be reviewed in this whitepaper). 

Consequently, many IT and business professionals are turning to the substantial body of experience, and the smaller body of documentation, which supports the discipline of program management. This discipline describes approaches, strategies, mechanisms, and desirable results for managing largescale efforts comprising parallel projects. Having said a little bit about program management, let us look at some definitions:

A group of related projects managed in a coordinated way to obtain benefits and control not available

from managing them individually. Programs may include elements of related work outside of the scope

of the discrete projects in the program.

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