Monday, January 2, 2017

Project Management in the US Federal Agencies ... it's the law (now)

EXCEPT FOR DoD (there's always an exception for DoD)
In the U.S. federal agencies, project management is now the law:

You can read a summary of the bill, Program Management Improvement Accountability Act at this link

(Sec. 2) This bill establishes as additional functions of the Deputy Director for Management of the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) requirements to:
  • adopt and oversee implementation of government-wide standards, policies, and guidelines for program and project management for executive agencies;
  • chair the Program Management Policy Council (established by this Act);
  • establish standards and policies for executive agencies consistent with widely accepted standards for program and project management planning and delivery;
  • engage with the private sector to identify best practices in program and project management that would improve federal program and project management;
  • conduct portfolio reviews to address programs identified as high risk by the Government Accountability Office (GAO);
  • conduct portfolio reviews of agency programs at least annually to assess the quality and effectiveness of program management; and
  • establish a five-year strategic plan for program and project management.

The head of each federal agency ..... shall designate a Program Management Improvement Officer to implement agency program management policies and develop a strategy for enhancing the role of program managers within the agency. .....

The Program Management Policy Council is established within OMB to act as the principal interagency forum for improving agency practices related to program and project management.
Of course, DoD has had formal project management practices for years. And, this is not unique to the United States; other countries have similar statutes on the books.

In the age of Agile, one always wonders if the "fix" is more regulation. We'll see if this goes the way of the "cost benefit analysis" that was introduced to much fanfare some years ago, but had only marginal effects in the political environment of the federal agencies

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