Independent Program Audit
Business-critical programs don’t come around very often; maybe every 3 years or so. That’s why few companies have the deep savvy needed to make well-informed judgements on how to tackle them.
Business-critical programs flounder, again and again, for the same handful of reasons.
At one extreme, vague objectives; fantasy plans; dreadful supplier performance and hopeless control systems. At the other – truant sponsorship; karaoke program management and under-resourced teams. The patterns are identical in every company.
Your business is not different. But each program setting is unique.
By using our deep knowledge and insights, we have worked out these failure patterns and figured out how to break their vice-like grip.
But – first things first. The time for opinion is over.
What are the facts? What is the state of the program?
Mentor’s health check is a rapid assessment of a business-critical program’s or program portfolio’s condition.
Mostly done “in-flight”, by seasoned program executives, it scales the problem, highlights areas for change and proposes answers. Its aim is to kick-start transition plans to shift an off-track program into calmer waters. A successful health check is based on hard evidence.
Facts destroy groundless – and often prejudiced opinion
They flush out major glitches and gaps in the program; spells out major exposures – resources, interdependencies, target dates, budgets – and smartens up weak governance systems with more effective controls.
Structured meetings with program directors, sponsors and critical resource owners, over a few intensive weeks, cover:
- Practicality of plans and metrics
- Program organisation structure
- Control systems and decision-making processes
- Accuracy and relevance of reporting
- Critical dependencies and contingency plans
But a health check is not a cure. It is crucial to understand this.
It scales the problem, highlights areas for acceleration and change and proposes answers.
Making the actual changes is tough, time consuming and expensive. There is no genie in the bottle, no matter how magically companies might want to patch up the destruction.
We look for qualitative evidence first and then test our impressions with fact-based material.
Oddly enough, the language people use to describe a program is often more revealing than any document.
Explicit plans are developed with senior executives to reset financial projections, with absolute confidence – and get the program back on track.
Naturally, these reflect the status of the program, its objectives, the company’s capabilities and the major gaps and risks.
If you have a “feeling” that a business-critical program is off-track, don’t cross your fingers and hope for the best.
A rapid health check is a must. We can give you hundreds of ideas, principles and tips that will quickly make a difference. If you crave no-nonsense advice, we can make your life a lot easier. You’ll have instant access to execution wisdom that has taken us over 25 years to hone. Let us know if you would like us to explain more.