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How Many Types of Programs Are There in Project Management?

In project management, programs correlate and manage resources, work, and budget by looking at the similarity in the projects. Basically, it helps you make better strategies to juggle between different projects or portfolios. In this article at a Girl’s Guide to Project Management, Elizabeth Harrin discusses 3 types of programs in project management.

Types of Programs in Project Management

Programs are typically a cluster of similar projects that have common goals to achieve. They can belong to a portfolio or act as a separate unit. Following are the 3 types of programs managers experience project management:

  1. Idea-based: This program is backed by an idea imagined by senior executives about the organization. This usually brings about a shift in work culture and ethics by rehauling and modifying the business principles. You usually have management support for this type of programs. Numerous projects help to make a strategy and help the idea become a reality. Since it is a top-down approach, everyone consents to work towards the idea in the end.
  2. Developing: This is the toughest of all the types of programs managers encounter. It does not start as a program initially but gradually develops into one. While working on similar projects, people realize that they are facing the same challenges or require similar skill sets. Moreover, there is a duplication of efforts for the same benefits these projects promised at the start. For better project management, these projects are brought under a centralized governance structure. This helps to manage resources, schedules, budgets, escalations, etc. better. Since new policies are in place for ongoing projects, you can face resistance from the project members. However, you must let them know the benefits of following the same practices.
  3. Compulsory: These programs are related to introducing new terms and conditions, processes, and policies in the organization, like GDPR. They are relatively easier to manage as you can apply them to all departments including HR, IT, marketing, customer services, etc. The project management of this programs does not help in launching new products. It is rather a project to keep the lights on by making sure the organization complies with new rules. This increases stakeholder buy-ins and brand credibility.

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