The Professional Development Unit was run during 2016-2017 through a partnership with ASC Training & Development to offer the nationally recognised training program, Diploma of Project Management, for Flinders University professional staff. Facilitated by Rob Weedon, the program ran for twelve months from June 2016 to May 2017, and was championed by Stuart Mossman, Director Projects, Corporate Services.
Ten participants graduated from the program in July 2017. The Diploma of Project Management Graduation Booklet provides an insight into the learning journeys of the staff who completed this program.
The Diploma of Project Management was a professional development program designed for staff who were involved in managing projects.
The Professional Development Unit had implemented four management programs at the Certificate IV and Diploma level for Flinders University staff in 2005/2006, 2009/2010 and 2011/2012. These programs have a beneficial impact on participants, their work areas, and the University as a whole, while providing nationally recognised training qualifications for participants.
Based on these successful outcomes, the Professional Development Unit offered a 12 month program in the Diploma of Project Management for professional staff at HEO6 and above levels. The program was designed to:
- Provide existing project management staff with a nationally recognised qualification;
- Enhance and systemise existing staff knowledge base in project management theory and practice;
- Create opportunities for staff career progression both within and without the University sector;
- Ensure up-to-date knowledge for existing project management staff; and
- Build networks across divisions and faculties of staff currently working in project management.
The Diploma of Project Management is a nationally accredited, practical qualification from the Business Services Training Package which aligns with the Australian Qualifications Framework Level 5 (AQF5).
Participants in the program were provided with the skills and tools required to manage more complex projects in the workplace. This included project scoping, work definitions and scheduling, resource and stakeholder management, costings and procurement, project implementation and closure.
This qualification provided a strategy for project leadership development, integrated with organisational strategic directions and goals. Important features of the qualification delivery were:
- Training focused on workplace learning;
- Assessment of competencies incorporating on-the-job activities, eg workplace projects;
- Nine full-day facilitated workshops provided on-campus at 4-5 week intervals; and
- Individual study between workshops of approximately 3 hours per week, or 10-15 hours per assessment activity.
Support from participants’ line managers and project sponsors was an integral component for successful completion of the program.
The Diploma of Project Management qualification required the completion of 12 units, consisting of 8 core units and 4 elective units. The Flinders University program offered the following units:
|BSBPMG511 – Manage project scope|
|This unit covers the performance outcomes, skills and knowledge required to determine and manage project scope. It involves obtaining project authorisation, developing a scope-management plan, and managing the application of project scope controls.|
|BSBPMG512 – Manage project time|
|This unit involves determining and implementing the project schedule, and assessing time-management outcomes.|
|BSBPMG513 – Manage project quality|
|This unit covers determining quality requirements, implementing quality control and assurance processes, and using review and evaluation to make quality improvements in current and future projects.|
|BSBPMG514 – Manage project cost|
|This unit covers the performance outcomes, skills and knowledge required to identify, analyse and refine project costs to produce a budget, and to use this budget as the principal mechanism to control project cost.|
|BSBPMG515 – Manage project human resources|
|This unit involves planning for human resources, implementing personnel training and development, and managing the project team.|
|BSBPMG516 – Manage project information and communication|
|This unit covers the performance outcomes, skills and knowledge required to link people, ideas and information at all stages in the project life cycle. Project communication management ensures the timely and appropriate generation, collection, dissemination, storage and disposal of project information through formal structures and processes.|
|BSBPMG517 – Manage project risk|
|This unit involves identifying, analysing, treating and monitoring project risks, and assessing risk-management outcomes.|
|BSBPMG521 – Manage project integration|
|This unit covers the performance outcomes, skills and knowledge required to integrate and balance the overall project management functions of scope, time, cost, quality, human resources, communications, risk and procurement across the project life cycle; and to align and track the project objectives to comply with organisational goals, strategies and objectives.|
|BSBPMG519 – Manage project stakeholder engagement|
|This unit involves ensuring the timely and appropriate involvement of key individuals, organisations and groups throughout the project.|
|BSBPMG520 – Manage project governance|
|This unit covers the performance outcomes, skills and knowledge required to establish and implement project governance. It involves identifying, applying, monitoring and reviewing project governance.|
|BSBPMG518 – Manage project procurement|
|This unit involves determining procurement requirements, establishing agreed procurement processes, conducting contracting and procurement activities, and managing finalisation processes.|
|BSBWOR502 – Lead and manage team effectiveness|
|This unit describes the skills and knowledge required to lead teams in the workplace and to actively engage with the management of the organisation.
It applies to individuals working at a managerial level who facilitate work teams and build a positive culture within their work teams. At this level, work will normally be carried out using complex and diverse methods and procedures requiring the exercise of considerable discretion and judgement, using a range of problem solving and decision making strategies.
Content for each unit of competency was integrated within and across each of the nine workshops.
The delivery of the Diploma program was tailored to the needs of Flinders University target group members.
A range of delivery methodologies and learning activities which assist the transfer and application of learning to the workplace were incorporated into the program:
- Facilitated workshops, 9.30am to 4.30pm;
- Work-based activities and projects, including one major project to be carried through from start to finish;
- Self-study using print-based learning materials;
- Mentoring and coaching by Flinders University staff acting as project sponsors;
- Individual development feedback and coaching, eg: discussions with participants and their supervisors;
- On- and off-the-job assessment activities; and
- Individual assessment feedback and coaching by facilitator, incorporating improvement opportunities to be applied in the workplace.
Participants were released from work tasks for workshop times. An additional 2-3 hours per week were required to enable them to complete self-study and assessment tasks, including some study in their own time. Access to a computer and the internet was essential.
A total of 9 workshops were held 4-5 weeks apart.
|Information session for participants and their supervisors
A one-hour session, providing a detailed outline of the program, together with expectations
for participants, supervisors, and project sponsors.
|2 May 2016|
|Introduction to project management and project scope definition
In this first session we take an overview of projects and project management including
definitions, project lifecycles and methodologies and Project Governance. We also practise
the tools of the initiation phase of projects. You will prepare a draft definition document for
your own project.
|6 June 2016|
|Managing time within a project
In Session 2 we go further into the process of scoping a project, describing the work of the
project through the use of a Work Breakdown Structure. Based on this detailed description
of the activities necessary to achieve project objectives we will prepare a project schedule.
|18 July 2016|
|Managing quality and costs
In Session 3 we look at the nature of cost and quality, the challenges associated with
managing them and then practise preparing quality and costing plans for projects. We also
examine the role of the project manager in procurement within a project.
|29 August 2016|
In this session we will take time to review and assess progress on our project plans in terms
of scope, time, cost and quality. We will also explore some of the more complex aspects of
costing and scheduling and look at some techniques for managing quality in the Execution
phase of a project.
|31 October 2016|
|Managing human resources
Gantt charts and cost management tools don’t achieve project objectives, people do.
Leading and managing people in a project is a vital set of skills for any project manager. In
this session we explore some basic techniques and tools for managing the human resource
and leading the people in a project.
|28 November 2016|
|Managing information, communication, and engaging stakeholders
This session takes us from the basics of good communication to the more specific topics
of managing change and variation and staying in touch with the needs and concerns of key
stakeholders. We will also look at various Project Management Information Systems.
|23 January 2017|
|Managing project risk & leading and managing effective teams
The first part of this session offers a step by step approach to the management of risk in
all its forms, safety, financial, status, reputation, environmental. A simple case study will
be used to demonstrate techniques which you will then apply to risks from your own work
The second part of this session builds on the work on Leadership begun in Session 5, with
a particular emphasis on Team Leadership. We look at ways of involving teams in planning,
decision making and problem solving and how leaders can provide powerful role models for
|20 February 2017|
In this session we look at the importance of monitoring, controlling and correcting in the
implementation phase of the project, based on case studies and your own experience we will
examine the various ways in which project managers steer projects to success.
|20 March 2017|
An opportunity to review and share lessons learned over the duration of the course and the
projects. We will also look at the important closing phase of a project and the key role played
by the Project Manager.
|3 April 2017|
The Diploma of Project Management program was a significant investment for the University both in time and money. It was important that the most appropriate participants were selected. The following criteria helped identify suitable candidates.
Ideally, participants were at HEO6 and above levels, and had involvement in managing projects. This included project managers, project officers and project sponsors, as well as those managing programs which involve projects.
Current project and sponsor
Participants gained the most benefit from the program if they have a current project on which they can focus their learning. A project sponsor was required to provide support, coaching, and mentoring for each participant.
Willingness to be involved
Participants needed to be interested in developing their project leadership and management skills. The program involved significant work and participants needed to be self-motivated to complete the required work, projects and assessment activities.
Commit to full program
The program ran over 12 months (June 2016 to May 2017) and included attending 9 full days of training, completing work related projects, and completing assessments in a timely manner. Participants were required to be able to commit to this time period as a minimum and preferably beyond to enable benefits to be appreciated. Therefore, participants needed to be employed by Flinders until at least December 2017.
Recruitment into the program was by nomination through the (then) relevant Faculty Executive Dean or Faculty General Manager, Deputy Vice-Chancellor, Pro Vice-Chancellor, Division Director, or Vice-President. Nomination was through an Expression of Interest form, endorsed by the supervisor and relevant Executive, and submitted to the Manager, Professional Development Unit, with the applicant’s current resume.
There were twelve fully funded places in the Diploma of Project Management 2016-2017 program available for professional staff. Applications were assessed by the reference group, with preference given to staff who:
Had involvement in managing projects, including project managers, project officers and project sponsors, as well as staff managing programs which involve projects;
Did not have any tertiary qualifications, including Certificate or Diploma level; and
Had not previously completed an accredited Project Management training program.
Since there were more eligible applications than fully funded places available, additional participants were accepted into the program at a cost of $3,000 per person. Applicants were asked to indicate on the Expression of Interest form whether they would be interested in a paid place in the program, and how the cost will be funded.
The Diploma of Project Management reference group made the final selection, with successful applicants advised in late April 2016.
Electronic submission of the Expression of Interest form is preferred via email to:
Naomi Madsen, Manager, Professional Development Unit
The course brochure was provided by our training partners, ASC Training & Development, and provides a more detailed outline of the program.
If you have questions or enquiries regarding the program, please contact Naomi Madsen, Manager, Professional Development unit via email or on Ext 12564.