What does levelling up mean for the project profession?
The levelling up agenda offers a huge opportunity for the project profession as well as a challenge. Levelling up projects will each be unique – with varying budgets, risks, and timelines.
In response to the announcement of the Levelling Up White Paper in February, APM’s Head of Public Affairs, Andrew Baldwin, stated that delivering levelling up requires “a strong vision, a clear delivery roadmap and a project-centric approach.”
Speaking to APM in February 2022, Valentina Lorenzon, an Independent Project Manager agreed that levelling up is a great opportunity for project professionals to take a central role in delivering change, but that much more is needed, saying: “It requires clear goals and, even more importantly, a strong delivery plan which takes into account the different nature, size and all the other variables of a project.”
“Implementation is key and there is a risk of ending up with a lot of strategies and processes but a lack of actionable plans for an efficient and beneficial delivery. We could have multiple disjointed or fragmented projects lacking an overarching strategy, co-ordination and a consistent, goal-oriented approach.”
Lorenzon added that project professionals could become the “bridge” between different stakeholder groups to improve the chance of effective projects being delivered. “As a profession, we have the opportunity to gain buy-in and engagement. We can be in the middle between government and other stakeholders, like transport organisations.” She has called on project professionals to create a cross-sector approach across regions, sharing knowledge and collaborating to ensure projects succeed.