Which role within an Agile delivery model carries out the following activities?

  • Managing budget
    • Forecasting and tracking actuals and variance
  • Managing stakeholders for things not relating directly to scope
  • Managing relationship with third parties
  • Tracking and managing internal & external dependencies
  • Managing business readiness activities including internal & external communications/ training needs analysis and implementation/ operational process design & implementation etc etc
  • Board level reporting
  • Understanding and aiding in ‘political’ discussions and decision-making (you all know what we mean!)

If we take a Scrum methodology as an example, there are three main roles within this way of working;

  1. Product Owner
  2. Scrum Master
  3. The Team

Which of these roles is responsible for the activities described above?

Still think there is not a need for (Agile) Project Managers?

That said, we should all be very open to redefining ‘project’ roles to create a better delivery model in an ever-changing world. However, the skill set of a Project Manager is so often underestimated, and very often seen as something anyone could do. This is understandable as the most valuable skills of a good PM are their ‘soft’ skills that often go unnoticed, but which can have huge influence on the successful delivery of projects. These skills are developed over time and through experience of managing (and making and learning from mistakes) a number of projects and should not be taken lightly.

Clearly projects can deliver without a Project Manager, and it is not hard to find companies that use a Scrum methodology without a PM. However, given everything we’ve just discussed, could the quality, efficiency and ease of those projects be improved and the amount of post project ‘fixing’ (both technical and operational) be reduced if a PM were involved?

Looking into the future of project delivery, it does not seem unfeasible to envision new methodologies and ways of working that redefine all roles. For example, imagine a world where a problem or opportunity was identified and input into a piece of software that then automatically calculated all the possible customer experience/ journey and technical solutions within that companies current systems and processes. This would effectively be carrying out the initial impact assessment and the whole of the design at the touch of a button therefore saving all the cost and time associated with a project team completing these activities. Add on to that fully automated testing for the whole solution and we are now getting into the realms of  absolute minimum resource, significantly reduced timescales and huge cost savings. It would also give the ability to deliver many, many more projects and realise all that extra benefit much sooner. And on a bigger scale, ultimately give the company the ability to improve and grow at a much accelerated pace. This would however, mean a complete re-think of the majority of project roles!

Sounds too good to be true right? Projectily are working on just such a solution as we speak so if you want to stay informed about its development why don’t you leave us your email address and we will ensure that you will be the first to be informed of how it progresses.