There are fundamental differences between a project and a program. Program management manages several related projects, often intending to improve an organization’s performance in the same direction.
Program Management is an organizational function that oversees a group of individual projects linked together through a shared organizational goal or common thread of related initiatives. There is an additional layer that requires a strategic management approach to executing and controlling multiple related projects. Program management office aims to drive benefits to the entire program by sharing resources, costs, and other project activities.
Project vs. Program Management
Suppose one was to manage as a project vs. a program, the synergies would be buried. The major difference between program management and project management is that the scope of a program is much broader and more adjustable, while its deliverables define a project. Managing related projects simultaneously creates an opportunity for synergies that would be elusive if one was to manage each project separately.
Programs are created from a high-level business view, while projects are much more specific. Programs are meant to achieve the strategic goals and business objectives of organizations. They have flexible deadlines and seek long-term benefits. On the contrary, projects have strict deadlines and seek quality control, timeliness, and cost-effectiveness to produce deliverables. Regardless of the initiative of a project or a program, it will still require some form of project management approach. Emmerging Solutions is ready to employ the proper approach for the demand.
Waterfall, Agile or Hybrid Approach
Organization, process, and digital technology require some form of methodology. We have experts that are highly effective listeners, communicators, and change agents. Specifically experienced in helping companies adapt to the project or program needs. We are equipped to support a waterfall, agile or mixed, also known as a Hybrid approach. The best approach will support the drive for better efficiency and effectiveness. Overall, we will leverage best practice processes, benchmarking, and analysis to achieve key business objectives.
The waterfall model is a classical model used in the system development life cycle to create a system with a linear and sequential approach. It is termed a waterfall because the model develops systematically from one phase to another in a downward fashion. The waterfall is a project management approach where a project is completed in distinct stages and moved step by step toward ultimate release to consumers. You make a big plan upfront and then execute linearly, hoping there won’t be any changes in the plan.
The Agile methodology has gained traction in recent years. In software development, agile practices involve discovering requirements and developing solutions by self-organizing with cross-functional teams and their customers/end-user. Agile is a project management approach that is incremental and iterative. Agile looks best where there is a higher chance of frequent requirement change. Agile is very flexible and allows to make changes in any phase. The working mechanisms with the agile methodology dictate less than traditional meetings, tracking, and demos.
It is becoming more common than not for a project or program to operate in a cross-functional capacity with both waterfall and agile practices. This type of methodology also is with a proven track record to exceed the management need. Another essential difference between agile and waterfall is a direct impact on team involvement. Test teams in the agile approach can take part in requirements change; test teams in Waterfall do not get involved in requirements change. Therefore, with the Hybrid approach, the team involvement is mapped out to have some involvement but with very defined rules.