Critical Friend Service for Government Department

A Critical Friend is an individual or organisation that is trusted to speak difficult truths and see solutions that might otherwise be overlooked. The concept is especially useful where complexity is high, and where political or personal agendas, or workplace culture might be colouring how issues are viewed.

Neon Ring
Neon Blue Ring

Client stories

The Project

The UK’s exit from the EU required a Central Government department to deliver complex projects simultaneously across the breadth of sectors. This was an unprecedented challenge and required employees to operate outside their expertise.

project assurance

The Approach

We engaged with senior stakeholders at the department to help build an overview of the situation, and developed a Work Package to address the challenges. The main challenges were: a need to quickly increase the breadth and depth of PPM competencies, and to continuously improve project delivery capability. The proposed Work Package involved us standing up a team of Delivery Advisors (DAs) and Project Management Business Partners (BPs) to work alongside and advise department teams, communicating directly with senior directors and ministers including the Secretary of State. Through these interactions, Reed Professional Services would act as a Critical Friend to the Central Government department, able to speak difficult truths and to use our collective experience to seek simple and innovative solutions, identify and pull drifting projects back on track, and to act as a bridge to assure the right delivery at the right time.

benefits staff augmentation

The Outcome

Due to the breadth of sectors the DAs and BPs were required to work in, we deployed team members with a range of skills and experience including governance, assurance, reporting, risk, issue and dependency management, and planning, from across a wide range of sectors: Health, MOD, Finance, Public and Private Sector. Additionally, we ensured the team had experience in a range
of project management methodologies – including Prince2, Waterfall, and Agile – enabling them to select and implement, even modify the methodology best suited to each project.

Our project with the department lasted far longer than initially expected. We managed this with no changes to the line-up of DAs and BPs, ensuring continuity of trust, stakeholder relationships and delivery. Work was further complicated by the COVID-19 pandemic, and all of the RPS project team were retained in post due to their ability to remain effective through all manner of challenges, and our position as a Critical Friend.

IR35 worker

Overcoming Challenges With Reed PS

Protect your workplace culture when you choose Reed PS to support your project delivery. We can engage with staff and stakeholders to understand the situation and the challenges being presented. We can then work with you to develop a strategy.

By choosing Reed PS you can experience seamless company transitions with our bespoke project delivery services. Explore how we can empower your organizstion – Contact us today for tailored solutions and consultation.

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