The Cabinet Office has hired three external firms – PA Consulting Group, Cranfield School of Management and The Project Academy – to run a Project Leadership Programme (PLP) for senior civil servants responsible for major government projects. The partners will work with the government institution to deliver a customised programme to over 300 government staff for the next five years.
The deal was announced by Francis Maude, Minister for the Cabinet Office, in the House on 23 March, saying: “We are launching a new project leadership programme. This programme will help to build project management skills in parallel to our successful major projects leadership academy.” The programme will combine expert academic theory with practical hands-on learning and will build the skills and capacity of senior project leaders across government to deliver large and complex projects on time and on budget.
Mike Bourne, a Professor of Business Performance at Cranfield, comments: “Major public sector projects are large and complex by nature due to their scale and complexity. We look forward to working with our government to ensure future projects have world-class leadership.” Bourne, who will lead the programme, as well says on behalf of his organisation that Cranfield is fully up for the job, stating: “Project management and leadership development are part of our core offering. We have worked with organisations across the world to help them improve their capability to lead on important and high profile projects.”
Simon Green, project management capability development expert at PA Consulting Group, says his firm is “thrilled to have been entrusted with such a nationally important” project leadership programme. He adds: “We are pleased to be contributing through coaching and development, the practical experience gleaned from our 70 year history of leading and delivering complex projects to this group of future project leaders across central government.”
“We are absolutely delighted to be delivering this programme alongside Cranfield and PA Consulting” remarks Paul Erricker, Managing Director of The Project Academy, a niche SME consultancy that specialises in project and programme management. “We are looking forward to working closely with government project leaders to really understand the challenges that they face, to identify their development needs and to coach them to enhance their project leadership skills.”
The 5-year contract will start in June and run for the period of five years. Terms and conditions of the deal have not been disclosed.