Management on a small scale

Sometimes the federal government can find models outside Washington, D.C.

Delaware found that making many small improvements in information technology project management has made a difference overall, said Thomas Jarrett, secretary and chief information officer of the Delaware Department of Technology and Information (DTI).

Here are some steps the department typically takes.

  • Assigns a nationally certified program or project manager to each new project.

  • Assigns a certified organizational change management team to support the project management team.

  • Ensures that all major IT projects have executive sponsors, including high-level managers from relevant state agencies, key DTI executives and representatives from the state’s Office of Management and Budget. The executive sponsors monitor the project’s progress and, when difficult project decisions arise, have the authority to keep the project moving or halt it.

  • Keeps in contact with elected state representatives and the governor, so they are aware of the complexities and progress of major IT projects.

“Providing information upfront, even when it may be painful, is far better than saving unpleasant surprises for year-end budget sessions,” Jarrett said. “Bad news doesn’t age well.”

About the Author

Mary Mosquera is a reporter for Federal Computer Week.

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