A strong vision, a clear delivery roadmap and a project-centric approach are needed to deliver the changes required to 'level up' the UK, Association for Project Management (APM) has stated.
Commenting on the details contained in the newly published government white paper, Levelling Up the United Kingdom, APM's head of public affairs Andrew Baldwin recently said:
While the headlines will focus on the 12 levelling up missions detailed in this paper, the Government has also referred to this initiative as a decade-long project. Whether or not new funding is available, the people charged with delivering these missions must use a project-centric approach, ensuring there is a strong vision for the benefits they intend to deliver and a clear roadmap for realisation of those benefits.
As the chartered body for the project profession, APM believes that projects are the means for delivering positive, long-term, sustainable change. It is imperative that a long-term initiative such as this decade long project establishes clear goals and specific plans to achieve them.
We need to see more detail on the proposed shift in power from Whitehall to local leaders, but there is an opportunity to re-evaluate how communities plan and deliver levelling up activity. More leaders are acknowledging the value of applying project-led approaches more broadly. Understanding of what constitutes a project is also changing. Work - whether at local government level or in a particular industry or sector - is being seen in terms of projects rather than 'tasks', with outputs, outcomes or benefits being delivered through planned change, balancing the constraints of time, cost and quality.