Enterprise Project Management (EPM) and Earned Value Management (EVM) are sometimes consigned to the trash can of “good in theory, shame it didn’t work here.” After the hard work of implementation, lack of executive sponsorship, lack of training, failure to gain buy-in and poor processes all contribute to reducing the sustainability of EPM and EVM initiatives. Even if there was sufficient training, team members often struggle when they attempt to map what they learned on their generic course to your EVM or EPM environment when they leave the classroom.
The benefits of integrated EVM and EPM training
At Ten Six we work on EPM and EVM implementations all the time – and we know how to avoid these difficulties. Our main piece of advice is to provide contextual training. That is, role based training on the tools that supports and reinforces your processes.
Integrated training blends roles, the process and the tools and gives your team a far better chance of making sense of the product suite in which you have invested. Back this up with a coaching plan and you have further increased the likelihood of success.
What does this look like in practice? This is what we recommend:
- Make the tools training as close to real life as possible. Use your actual EVM or EPM processes in the classroom. Show the project managers how to use the tools to meet the requirements for monthly reporting cycles, for example.
- Use worked examples and real data. Keep the materials consistent with what the team will actually face back in the workplace, including templates and jargon.
- Produce a training strategy. Work out who needs what training and ensure that the courses covering tools and processes will support everyone.
- Produce a communications plan to ‘sell’ the benefits of the new software and to explain how the company will gain from the new ways of working.
- Create a support system for when the team has finished formal training. Consider an online help system, a coaching program, and support from the Project Management Office or anything else that people can use if they get stuck.
Getting started with contextual training
While integrated, contextual training is important for EVM and EPM success, you don’t have to write all the training material yourself. That’s expensive and time consuming – and we’ve already done it for you, based on our experience of working with best-in-class processes.
The team at Ten Six has been delivering integrated, contextual training for many years. We have developed training materials that bridge the gap between enterprise tools and the main Enterprise Project Management and Earned Value Management processes. These enterprise tools include Primavera P6, Deltek Cobra, Deltek wInsight and Microsoft Project all blended with process. Our course material can be tailored to fit you and the roles in the team.
Training courses cover a lot of content and it can be difficult for delegates to take it all in. Structured coaching after the course can help people retain information and apply it effectively, as well as cover new areas and reinforcing the material.
Ten Six’s highly experienced coaches can work alongside your team post-implementation. They will ensure that project management deliverables are produced in an environment that supports the processes that underpin organizational objectives. Using role-based coaching and a structured curriculum ensures that the right people get the right support at a suitable time – and that your EVM or EPM implementation has the best possible chance at not being consigned to that bin of “good in theory.”
An experienced Ten Six consultant is available to look at your implementation plan and provide guidance on how contextual training and coaching will support the deployment of your tools.
If you’ve already implemented your tools and are struggling with poor levels of adoption, we’ll look at where you are now and assess how a training and structured coaching program could get you where you want to be.
Give us a call and talk to someone today about integrated process and tool training.