Outsourcing all or part of a project can be a great way to achieve delivery at times when there is either no capacity or a skills gap in your team.
This article provides some top tips for outsourcing your projects.
First consider which of your vendors has the right expertise for the job. Use a vendor who is independent to oversee and manage your projects. If part of the project involves overseeing another vendor, try to make sure they are not competitors.
Write it down
It is important to document and share your requirements to find out if the vendor you have chosen can deliver the work for you. The features of your project should be documented in either a Business Requirements Document (BRD) or Statement of Work (SoW). If this is not your area of expertise, discuss the project with the potential vendor and ask them to provide a proposal which sets out the scope and fee. Make sure the proposal is clear and not vague. Agree the success criteria up front so it can be included in the proposal. This will be helpful later when you are paying the bill and validating that the vendor has completed the work required.
No contract, no project!
It is essential to have a contract that sets out all the deliverables and the terms. This is important, even if you know the vendor very well, perhaps more so. This helps to avoid a difference in either yours or your vendor’s expectations. It is important to set out what exactly is going to be delivered, the fees and when payment is due. Save any arguments later!
Depending on the size and nature of the project, you may need quality assurance. Quality assurance is a whole other subject and certainly one which Go Pensions can provide as part of or alongside the management of a project.
Milestones not millstones
Include key milestones and review check points in the plan, making sure payments are scheduled once each deliverable is signed off.
If the project has business critical deadlines, consider what might happen if it is not delivered on time and whether penalties can be included. Although, do be reasonable and recognise what aspects are within the vendor’s control.
Culture, touchpoints and stakeholders
The chosen Project Manager (PM) should be well versed in managing the day to day working group as well as reporting to your senior stakeholders on the steering board.
It will be worth immersing your PM in the organisation’s culture so that they know how best to meet expectations and impress your stakeholders.
It is important to include regular touchpoints between you and your PM so that there is an open dialogue to share business updates and foster a partnership approach. This is especially important if the PM is overseeing an internal project within your organisation. The PM may need your support and guidance with your key relationships.
Achieving strategic goals without the headcount
With the right project partner, you will have access to suitably experienced Project Management professionals who can make an immediate impact on projects that you are struggling to find the time for. Your projects will be proactively managed by experienced and dedicated resources who do not have day to day business distractions. You can remain focussed on your day to day business priorities.
And no associated employment costs or headcount for your organisation! What’s not to like?
Get in touch
If you wish to discuss outsourcing your projects and making use of our experienced pensions Project Managers, Susan will be delighted to discuss your project with you. Call Susan on 020 8213 5890.