To lead multi-disciplinary project teams to deliver agreed projects to time, cost and quality. Identify opportunities for improvement and produce robust business cases for approval by relevant decision-making bodies.
This role will be based with managers across the directorate according to the changing needs and priorities of the organisation. They may also be managing project teams that include Partnership organisations; staff from other local authorities; Members; the public; external contractors; or any other relevant partners required to deliver the project.
The programme will be complex, with interdependent objectives; resources and deliverables. The projects undertaken will be wide ranging and cover differentiated knowledge areas and skill sets/ professional disciplines. The post holder will require both a breadth and detail of understanding, to make accurate judgements around the timescales; benefits; costs and risks. Project Managers will have to adapt rapidly to shifting demands and priorities and will be focussed on providing a responsive service to the Project Sponsor. This will mean that the post holder needs to be flexible and adaptable, with a high level of professional credibility. The post holder will utilise a broad range of specialist skills and draw upon a wide range of the Council’s intelligence and knowledge to provide Project Sponsors with the support they need to lead the project and maximise the likelihood of delivering the intended benefits. Their work may require designing and implementing systems and processes; diagnosing and providing solutions to performance problems; developing programmes related to improving key cross-cutting outcomes; supporting services to change the way they do things; managing the development of cross cutting strategies; and helping services to make the best use of their resources.
The project management aspect of this role is hands on and focussed on delivery. As the person closest to the programme/ project, the post holder will have a key role in identifying and recommending solutions/ opportunities and creating a vision for the project. This will require the post holder to be both creative and resilient, delivering innovative solutions to strategic and operational challenges; overcoming inertia and building support for change; and ensuring compromise solutions don’t dilute the programme/ project benefits. In delivering these projects the post holder will be required to both make timely and accurate decisions, with minimal oversight within the agreed parameters. They will also be the key advisor to the project sponsor and so be highly influential in taking strategic decisions relating to the project.
- Undertake reviews to identify opportunities for improvement and produce high quality business cases for approval by relevant decision-making bodies.
- Undertake detailed project planning, management and implementation to ensure projects are delivered on time and to budget, and deliver their anticipated benefits, whilst minimising disruption to Council services. Design effective project governance arrangements and directly address governance issues as and when they arise. Measure programme/ project impacts and ensure lessons learnt are fed back into a process of improving the way the Council manages change.
- Manage multidisciplinary project teams that are likely to comprise of Senior Officers with professional expertise (e.g. Service experts; HR; Finance; ICT; Legal; Property; Procurement; Communications) and may include external contractors. The post holder will be expected to champion the programme/ project vision, using experience to provide powerful analogies/ case studies to support the agreed course of action.
- Develop effective working relationships with lead stakeholders within the programme/ project, including service-based officers (up to Director level); ‘professional’ support services officers (HR/Finance etc); elected Members, Chief Officers, Trade Unions; professional advisers and contractors.
- Provide credible, accurate and timely reports to the agreed frequency, and to report ad-hoc and promptly on any appropriate developments that could adversely affect the project, or the Council in a wider context.
- Be responsible for effective risk management and issue resolution for the project. Make recommendations and set frameworks to ensure key decisions are made with consideration of all relevant factors.
- Quality-check the projects for which the post holder is responsible and provide regular assurance on their viability; governance and risk profile.
- Effectively chair project meetings and produce any required project documentation (in line with the Council’s project management toolkit).
- Represent the Council in communication and consultation with relevant stakeholders that may include (affected staff; Senior Management; Members; service user groups; Trade Unions; supplier organisations). This may require negotiation both internally and externally and involve the resolution of complex problems and conflicting priorities.
- To monitor the project budget and in the event of deviation recommend appropriate remedial measures.
- Sensitively manage business change to ensure that changes to structures/ behaviours/ processes are complementary and to minimise the negative impacts of the associated disruption to staff and systems.
Expectation to provide strong leadership, using experience to provide powerful analogies/ case studies to support the agreed course of action
Provides operational management and guidance to Project Support Officers and less experienced Project Managers
Expected to undertake complex financial modelling and take responsibility for project budgets.
Manage relationships with partner organisations, other local authorities, and other stakeholders to design and deliver sensitive and complex projects, using influencing and negotiation skills to build consensus and achieve project objectives.
Consequences of decisions made by the post holder in delivering projects are likely to be felt across several council departments, having significant impact on multiple council services, large numbers of people and other external organisations