Ontario Ministry of Northern Development and Mines

Business Transformation Program Management

The SITUATION

Ontario Budget 2009 stated the government will introduce changes to the Mining Act to promote balanced development to benefit all Ontarians while supporting a vibrant Ontario minerals industry. The proposed legislative changes would also establish a framework to make significant strides in Aboriginal consultation and a budget of $40 million over three years for imitates to support Mining Act development and implementation. The new Mining Act was passed into legislation October 2009.
Significant changes were committed to in the Act involving transformational change to majority of the Mining Division of the Ministry of Northern Development, Mining and Forestry (MNDMF now MNDM) and a large program was imitated titled Mining Act Modernization (MAM).
In response to the RFP issued, our consulting team was selected to provide Program/ Project Management advisory and specialized services to the MAM Program.

The CHALLENGE

The MAM program would involve extensive work in the areas of business process mapping, stakeholder consultation, regulations development, new business process development and I&IT systems planning, acquisition, or development. Five working groups were in place comprised of 80+ individuals almost all assigned to the project on a part-time basis.
  • There was very limited project/program management knowledge and experts within the teams
  • A governance structure was in place with an Executive Committee and Steering Committee but formal governance processes had not yet been established
  • There were a large number of external stakeholders impacted by the changes envisioned through MAM. Expectations and diverse interests of industry, aboriginal peoples, environmental groups, municipalities and surface rights holders would need to be managed effectively to make the program successful
  • There was virtually no integration of the scope of work and it was viewed as unique and independent to each working group
  • No planning actives had yet been undertaken
Key responsibilities of the assignment were to:
  • Provide a right-sized project management framework for leadership and teams to use
  • Lead the effort to organize and plan the scope of work
  • Provide coaching and advisory services to ensure project management principles and discipline were followed consistently throughout the project
  • Develop and manage the process/tools/templates for execution, monitoring tracking and control including project performance reporting with the Executive and Steering committees as well as external stakeholders as required
  • Assist with development of program components through guided facilitation of workshops

The APPROACH

A team of two consultants were assigned to the program. The following principles were applied for this assignment

  • Right-sizing of methodology
  • Disciplined, integrated approach
  • Value-added contribution
Through leadership interviews, the project management maturity of the team was assessed against the needs of the MAM program to create a right-sized methodology. Our team initiated and assisted the working groups in project charter development planning sessions were held to develop of detailed work breakdown structures and individual schedules. Project management coaching was provided to working group leads throughout the duration of the assignment to ensure consistency and discipline in maintaining and tracking to plans.
There was a gap in the overall integration of the program work and interdependencies between working groups – this was addressed by:
  • Identifying interdependencies between teams
  • Creating a full master schedule for the entire program (1500+ tasks and actives)
  • Creating and maintaining a program risk management process and tracking system
  • Creating a working group leads forum to resolve program level issues, risks, decisions and performance
Program status reporting processes were designed and implemented considering availability and familiarity with project management tools within the organization without compromising quality or discipline required. A dashboard was developed to report the performance of the individual working groups as well as the overall program. A monthly formalized project reporting process was developed and led by our team throughout the assignment.

The RESULT

The project management discipline introduced was appropriate for the needs of the MAM program. The effectiveness and transparency of the outcomes was very well received and our team’s work on MAM was stated to be the ‘gold standard’ by which other programs in the Ministry were being evaluated.
Transfer of knowledge is an important component of all our assignments. Specific Project control responsibilities were transferred to individuals within the Ministry by preparing and walking through a step by step project management binder. Coaching and practice time were provided throughout the assignment to ensure a smooth handover and ongoing capacity within the Ministry to manage the program management function.
At the end of the assignment, two phases out of three were complete and planning completed for Phase three. A very high level of satisfaction was expressed by the sponsors and program teams.

Why Watershed CI?

As experts in the field of Change Integration™, we recognize that one size does not fit all. Each client comes with distinctive needs, culture, level of maturity and tolerance for complexity. We weigh these factors when selecting the appropriate solution – this ensures the suite of deliverables achieve high-quality, customized results.
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