5 Myths About Integrated Program Management

Posted by Megan Cacioppo on October 5, 2016

5 Myths About IPM Blog  Header Image

A lot of contractors and agencies don’t embrace integrated program management (IPM) because of what they believe to be true – it’s expensive and difficult, it’s only for large projects or it will add stress to an already busy day.

But IPM is an excellent approach for just about any organization whose existence revolves around landing and completing projects. IPM exists to plan, analyze and monitor projects or programs through an integrated system, rather than some haphazard, seat-of-the-pants approach.

For today’s post, we decided to take a closer look at the top five myths surrounding IPM, and debunk them once and for all.

  1. IPM is Expensive and Difficult. Yes, there’s an upfront cost to effectively implement IPM and integrate all project management tools into a closed-loop system. But consider that cost similar to buying project insurance. Do this correctly, and IPM gives you visibility and control into your projects, programs, and portfolio. Implemented in a constructive manner, IPM will easily pay back the initial investment in dollars, time, and accuracy in project visibility.
  2. IPM Is Only for Large, Mature Projects. You may think that only the largest and most mature projects and organizations can successfully implement integrated program management. In fact, IPM is a great idea for projects of all sizes, contract types, and maturity. IPM involves project planning and execution, using multiple tools for tracking and predictive information, all in an integrated system. In reality, IPM is a methodology for managing any project or program, regardless of maturity or size.
  3. IPM Will Remove the Risk from Your Project. No, IPM doesn’t prevent risk. What it does is help you and all players to anticipate and understand risk, and effectively plan for it. You know what might happen, understand how to recognize the early warning signs, and have a plan in place so that you can act quickly once you spot the warnings.
  4. Clients Really Just Want the Project Done Well. All’s well that ends well, right? If you can deliver a good project or outcome at the end, you’re a winner. Well, maybe for some clients. But in today’s world of cutthroat competition, most clients will be wowed by the up-to-date knowledge, visibility, and solid program insight you gain through IPM — not just at the end of the project but every day along the way. That makes it all the more likely you’ll land the next project.
  5. IPM Will Add Stress to an Already Busy Day. Ask experts on workplace stress and they can rattle off lots of causes. One of the biggest triggers is workload. So won’t it just add stress if your organization goes to the trouble of adopting IPM? Think again. Also on the workplace stressor list is lack of control, and IPM goes a long, long way toward alleviating that particular source of stress. Another often-listed source of stress? Poor communication. IPM is all about easing stress through greater communication of details, data, problems, and solutions.

What did you – or do you still – believe to be true about integrated program management?

I encourage you to learn more about how IPM can help you take program management to the next level by providing structure and a common language for the entire team in our eBook, Integrated Program Management for Dummies™.