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Corporate Partner Case study – National Highways

What are the positive project outcomes that you can attribute to joining as a Corporate Partner? Can you share any metrics/KPIs that demonstrate the successes since becoming an APM Corporate Partner?

Having a partnership with APM has enabled the project profession in National Highways to develop a full career development programme; from starter to charter. This supports the people in our project community, at whatever stage of their careers, to look at their skills within our assessment tool. They can then make plans to develop the capability and competency they need for their current roles, or for progression to the next phase of their careers.

Mapping career paths to the professional qualifications, accreditation levels and chartership offered by APM, enables National Highways to give employees a great opportunity to develop their careers in a way that is aligned to professionally recognised standards.

National Highways has five core levels of development:

  1. New to Profession: accelerated learning and development programmes.
  2. Foundation Professional: working within project teams, develop skills and knowledge.
  3. Practising Professional: starting to lead in areas of project management and supporting within complex project delivery, taking ownership of outputs.
  4. Project Professional: leading projects, owning workstreams within complex delivery.
  5. Project Leader, Director: leading project delivery programmes, setting strategy.

Right from the beginning, we encourage our emerging talent and new starters to undertake our Foundation Certificate of Achievement that recognises the achievement of gaining their APM Project Fundamentals Qualification through the evidence they submit of putting their learning into practice within the projects we deliver.

“My transition to a new career was helped by having clear development support and tools linked to the APM. I found I was not starting at zero, I had leadership and teamwork competencies core to the role of project manager. I then needed to target technical skills, and understand project controls, value and benefits through the lifecycle of a project, to deliver success within our infrastructure programme.”

Nick Moczadlo, Graduate Project Manager, National Highways

Nick is an ex-teacher who came to National Highways through our graduate programme, looking for a career which would offer growth and a wider variety of challenges.

Moving on from the foundation level we offer a Practicing Certificate of Achievement which looks for evidence where individuals are starting to lead either on a delivery project or within a specialist discipline e.g. risk, cost management, planning. Our practicing certificate assessment is more challenging and looks for evidence at level three in the competence framework, this helps individuals understand the standard of experience and evidence they need to make their application for APM Full membership.

Finally, we encourage gaining the Chartered Project Professional standard (ChPP). From there we offer our professionals at project professional and project leader, director levels continuing support for their continued professional development through representing the company at industry forums within APM and with our partners.

Our numbers of ChPP and Full member employees have grown each year, improving our project delivery maturity and practice. We have increased from around 40 APM memberships in 2015 to nearly 200 (including more than 30 ChPPs, and with more than 750 individuals registered on the APM website.

How has APM helped your organisation and your project community since becoming a Corporate Partner?

A big impact of partnering with APM is the web resources and online content available to our project professionals; webinars, research, YouTube, virtual events and conferences bringing different perspectives and ways of looking at aspects of the profession. Networking with professionals from other sectors through the APM’s Specific Interest Groups (SIGs) and regional branch events enables the sharing of ideas and best practice to enhance our professional practice.

Why would you recommend that other organisations within your sector become Corporate Partners of APM?

Joining up with partners and project management organisations through the different forums and groups within APM highlights that we all have the same issues and challenges to work through. Having different corporate perspectives, and sharing knowledge and lessons, is invaluable to progress our project delivery practice and effectiveness.

What elements of Corporate Partnership do you find most useful?

Having links and access at all levels of career development through partnering with APM helps to develop our professionals and our corporate capability.

All our professionals, and new starters, at whatever stage of their career can continue and expand their professional development. With National Highways they have the resources to reach their full potential and access to APM.

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