Mark Mullaly is president of Interthink Consulting Incorporated, an organizational development and change firm specializing in the creation of effective organizational project management solutions. Since 1990, it has worked with companies throughout North America to develop, enhance and implement effective project management tools, processes, structures and capabilities. Mark was most recently co-lead investigator of the Value of Project Management research project sponsored by PMI. You can read more of his writing at markmullaly.com.
Maturity models and assessments may help an organization peg its current project management capabilities, but the information is only of use if executive management supports a course of action to go from where the company is to where it wants to be, step by step.
This article continues a series that explores how increased maturity can influence better project results. The series is based upon results from the Organizational Project Management Baseline Study, a worldwide benchmarking effort to understand current capabilities, trends and best practices in the realm of organizational project management.
Maturity models provide a strong appeal in helping to communicate current capabilities, and helping to make the case for improving project management effectiveness. Their primary advantage is in distilling the complexities associated with how an organization manages its projects into a simplified model that typically expresses maturity in levels, most often using a 5-level framework. A Level 1 organization is one that is completely ad hoc, lacking processes and relying upon the expertise and persistence of its project team for success. At Level 3, there is a consistent process defined within the organization that is consistently applied for all of its projects. Level 5 speaks to a mature, rigorous process discipline that defines how the organization is managed and