Overview of Programme Management roles
In addition to the Case Study provided below, my website includes other programme management examples as follows:
- HRP: As the Strategic Digital Channel Manager I managed an ongoing transformation programme delivering new customer journeys and operating models for the business. This was underpinned by new website and infrastructure, new mobile proposition and visitor experience, new ways of revenue generation, new operational processes, policies and controls. This programme broke down into three main worktreams and multiple projects. To read more, please follow this link.
- DHL: This programme management (delivery) role followed on from an earlier eCommerce strategy assignment with DHL (in 2008/09). I was engaged by the Board to update the strategy, prioritise and deliver projects with best ROI. This programme split down into five workstreams (1) web optimisation, (2) new mobile capability, (3) digital marketing performance (4) management, customer acquisition/on-boarding and (5) social media engagement. To read more, please follow this link.
- Acromas Holdings: Retained as the eCommerce Programme Manager. Please see case study below.
- BBC: I set-up and led the TV+ Programme to deliver streamed AV content and interactive applications (games) to the consumer via Broadband internet. This internet/TV initiative comprised three concurrent workstreams and multiple projects and encompassed technical, operational and business changes which were subsequently used by the iPlayer. To read more about this and other roles at the BBC please follow this link.
- BOC Group: I held the post of IT Outsource Programme Manager in my last permanent role for BOC, where I delivered major change to the global IT sourcing strategy and operating model provide 50% cost reductions and faster response times in the delivery of global IT systems. This programme comprised 11 SAP ERP and J2EE projects (circa £10M spend) delivering IT and services across 70 countries in which BOC operates. To read more about my work at BOC please follow this link.
As some projects can be bigger than programmes, I make the following distinction: Projects deliver a point solution at a particular point in time. Programmes are ongoing activities that are aligned to business strategy usually targeting longer term business outcomes and strategic change. Programmes normally break down into workstreams that can include multiple projects. Both paradigms require similar technical skills, expertise and effective governance to succeed.
Case Study: eCommerce Programme
The Board of Acromas, a holding company for several house-hold name brands including The AA and SAGA, had approved £12M mobile/web innovation programme to upgrade it’s eCommerce capabilty. Online products and services for the Group included insurance, roadside assistance, personal investments, holidays and publishing (books, magazines). A key objective was to leverage customer insight to target potential customers with propensity to consume these products and services and also to retain / cross sell / up sell existing customers. A central work stream for the programme was the acquisition and integration of eCommerce tools s that could capture customer and product data and analytics. Further technology and operational processes were put in place to translate this data into actionable insight and trigger automated and manual sales and marketing activities. The desired outcome of the programme was to double the ROI in 36 months.
Two new websites were designed built and launched and a set of complimentary projects were run on the programme to drive traffic to the sites and improve underlying technology performance reliability. A new operational function was established (with newly aquired eCommerce tools) to continuously optimise commerce journeys. A mini programme mobilised to deliver a series of mobile apps providing ubiquitous access to the brand, products and services.
The eCommerce Programme delivered wholesale changes to technology, customer experience and a set of new operating models for the lines of business. Scope of the programme is summarised below, with links to other relevant show-case projects:
- New Website for The AA with an upgraded CMS (Interwoven) with new workflow
- New Website for SAGA Services and new CMS (SiteCore) with new workflow
- Newly architected back end services, adopting an agile approach to deliver changes on shorter releases cycles.
- Implementation of Target Operating Models (TOM) for each line of business
- Upgraded conventional analytics and incorporated new ‘session replay’ capability
- Social media integration with user generated content
- Mobile apps and mobile optimised websites: Read more >
- Web-chat deployment: Configuration and integration within business teams / call centres
- Acquisition and deployment of digital A/B testing and MVT tools and methods: Read more >
- Design/build of a self-service portal providing single sign-on customer access to products and services
- Performance, capacity and resilience improvements to infrastructure/architecture and application tier including IaaS / SaaS hosting arrangement
New websites were anchor points for the multi channel eCommerce programme
Two new websites were designed to improve the way products were promoted through new self-service channels and user experience. Financial services and products included motor insurance, home insurance, personal investments, roadside assistance. Retail products included books, magazines and package and cruise holidays. One of the websites required a complete new content management system and the other site required a new version of the existing CMS with additional workflow to enable greater control over the content by the business.
The business case for two new eCommerce websites relied on incorporating the redesign projects into a Group level programme and spreading the costs, expertise and benefits across the multiple brands.
I led both website redesign projects through full life-cycles, from initial ideation, business case/feasibility, to requirements capture. I managed the supplier selection, and continued to programme manage both initiatives through the discovery phases, design iterations, build and integration, test and successful and timely public launches.
This was my first exposure to multi-channel multi-brand eCommerce programme management, which has since become more mainstream in particular with well-known brands now providing online market-place solutions.
Footnote – Conclusion.
Group level multi channel eCommerce programmes deliver substantial returns on investment for large businesses comprising multiple brands and P&Ls. Incremental EBIT benefits can be achieved by leveraging group-level purchasing powers and by standardising methods, skills and technology across multiple lines of business. Having the right controls and group-level governance in place is critical to success.