The Comprehensive Spending Review announced by the government 24 hours earlier should be considered an opportunity. This was the overwhelming message coming from the APM Project Management Conference on the 21st October.
The Conference – which carried the subtitle ‘Building the Future in Partnership’ was chaired by Professor Darren Dalcher of the National Centre for Project Management and featured keynote addresses from Stephen Carver, Sir Peter Gershon and Michael Cavanagh.
A reduced tolerance of project failure and a greater emphasis on governance and benefits will bring the skills of project professionals to the fore. This was a great opportunity, said Stephen Carver, who opened the conference by looking what we can learn from history about working in partnership.
Sir Peter Gershon, reflecting on his work within the Efficiency & Reform Group, challenged APM by saying; “The association’s time has come, and the only question then is, can it, and will it, rise to the occasion?”.
This challenge was responded to at the APM Project Management Awards in the evening when Chairman Mike Nichols announced that the association’s new professional standard; APM Registered Project Professional would be open for applications from the 1st March 2011.
The new standard, which is set at the same level as the proposed Chartered Project Professional Standard, will be awarded to professionals who can demonstrate the capabilities of a responsible leader, have the ability to manage a complex project and use appropriate project management tools, processes and techniques.
Addressing the audience of nearly 400 professionals, Mike Nichols said “The need for our skills will grow, but so will the expectations of our clients and the wider community. We are needed, more than ever, on the front line of project delivery and also in the board room to make decisions about the projects that will deliver the greatest benefit.”