APM Conference speaker announced: Susie Palmer-Trew

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Posted by James Driver on 21st Feb 2018

Universities and colleges in the UK are facing unprecedented change and need to rethink their approach if they are to flourish in testing times ahead.

Competition, policy, market changes, academic freedom, government reviews and decisions mean they have to not only manage and deliver change but also embrace the concept and embed it into future strategy, according to Susie Palmer-Trew.

“Higher education institutions (HEIs) need to change when everything is changing. We need to be able to rock the boat and stay in it,” she said.

A portfolio management office (PMO) is essential to a collaborative and partnered approach to improving project and change capability. It should be regarded as a beneficial, strategic partner and not simply a support function, explained Susie, who is head of the award-winning PMO at the Open University.

“PMOs can make a valuable contribution towards the successful delivery of strategy, the realisation of benefits and to future sustainability.”

The Open University is undertaking the largest scale of change ever seen in its 50-year history. Susie led the university’s PMO as it transitioned from project support to strategic partner, winning APM’s PMO of the Year 2017 Award.

She has worked within or for HEIs for 12 years, predominantly in project, change and strategy environments. She sees her role as a catalyst and game changer, striving to achieve potential in both business and people.

Like many other HEIs, the Open University offers APM accredited academic project management learning to students, but was the first in the sector to achieve APM accreditation for its in-house professional training and development programme for its own project staff, practicing what it teaches.

At the APM Project Management Conference, Future Proofsponsored by Hyde Park Solutions Ltd, in London on 25 April, Susie will share experiences and lessons learned as the PMO focuses on driving up impact and value to the university, its staff and students. She believes that the OU’s PMO experiences can be as helpful to other sectors as they are to HEIs.

“While higher education has a unique requirement for project and change management, it also has to tackles the same issues and projects as other sectors and organisations.”

Susie joins a world class panel of speakers at this year's APM Project Management Conference 2018. Book your place today

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