One of your primary responsibilities is to establish a robust set of project and program management standards as well as a structured governance framework. This infrastructure is crucial in driving consistency and efficiency across multiple projects, ensuring the seamless delivery of program objectives.

Table of Contents

1. Establishing Program and Project Management Standards

The creation and implementation of program and project management standards enable the provision of a consistent approach to managing project tasks. These standards will help define common language and processes, reduce complexity and create predictable outcomes.

Industry Best Practices:

Best practices such as the guidelines provided by the Project Management Institute’s (PMI) Standard for Program Management or PRINCE2 offer a robust foundation to develop these standards. For instance, PMI’s standard encourages the usage of a benefits driven approach comprising of strategy alignment, stakeholder management, benefits realization, program governance and lifecycle management.

Organizational Standards:

Each organization will have unique nuances that need to be taken into account whilst developing the standards. This could include factors such as the industry that the organization operates in, the size of the organization, the organizational culture and the nature of the programs and projects handled.

2. Structuring Governance

Good governance lays the foundation for efficient project and program direction and controls. Clarity in governance ensures accountability, transparency and quality control.

Industry Best Practices:

A key industry best practice is to constitute a governance board, sometimes called a Program Steering Committee, which could comprise of senior managers and key stakeholders. This board will be responsible for making strategic decisions, monitoring performance, managing risks and resolving major issues.

Organizational Standards:

Organizational governance structures should be developed in line with the overall corporate governance guidelines and should be tailored to the size and complexity of the program.

3. Defining Tools, Finance, and Reporting


The usage of project and program management tools such as MS Project or tools like Trello for task management, Slack for communication, Jira for agile management can bring synergies into the planning and execution process.


Budgeting and financial management are pivotal to program success. Techniques like Earned Value Management (EVM) and Cost-Benefit Analysis can be effective ways to keep track of the financial aspects of a program.


Regular, transparent and concise reporting ensures that all stakeholders are kept updated on program progress. This includes status reporting, financial reporting, risk reporting etc.

4. Implementing The Framework

The approach to implementing the framework should include training program and project team members, conducting regular audits to ensure adherence and iteratively updating the framework as the organization evolves.

In conclusion, developing project and program management standards in accordance with industry best practices and organizational needs, coupled with a strong governance structure, can ensure a reliable framework for driving efficiency and consistency in delivering program objectives.

Passing the PgMP® exam will not just formalize your expertise in handling multiple complex projects and improving your program management skills, but also equip you to adapt and implement standards and structure that best suits your organization.

Practice Test

True or False: Program Management Standards focus on individual projects, not on a portfolio of projects.

  • True
  • False

Answer: False

Explanation: Program Management Standards are used to guide the coordinated management of multiple projects that are aligned towards achieving a common goal.

Governance in program and project management includes:

  • a) Setting objectives
  • b) Delivering benefits
  • c) Managing risks
  • d) All of the above

Answer: d) All of the above

Explanation: Governance in program and project management incorporates setting objectives, delivering benefits and managing risks.

The primary objective of program finance management is:

  • a) To identify cost savings
  • b) To ensure that program resources are used efficiently
  • c) To make profits
  • d) None of the above

Answer: b) To ensure that program resources are used efficiently

Explanation: Program finance management helps in efficient resource allocation to ensure program objectives are met in a cost-effective manner.

True or False: Reporting is not a significant aspect of program and project management.

  • True
  • False

Answer: False

Explanation: Reporting is a fundamental aspect of program and project management as it provides essential information about the program’s performance and progress in achieving the objectives.

The use of industry best practices in program management:

  • a) Increases the risk of program failure
  • b) Adds unnecessary complexity to program management
  • c) Helps ensure consistency and drive efficiency
  • d) All of the above

Answer: c) Helps ensure consistency and drive efficiency

Explanation: Industry best practices helps in program standardization, driving efficiency and consistency in program execution.

True or False: There is no need to customize program management standards and structures according to the specific needs of an organization.

  • True
  • False

Answer: False

Explanation: While industry best practices provide a good starting point, it’s important to tailor program management standards and structures to best suit the specific needs and context of an organization.

Having a clear program governance structure:

  • a) Confuses the team members
  • b) Slows down decision making
  • c) Enhances accountability and decision-making
  • d) Is of no use

Answer: c) Enhances accountability and decision-making

Explanation: Clear program governance structures identify roles, responsibilities, and authorities, thereby supporting swift and effective decision-making.

True or False: Program and project management tools are beneficial even without adequate training in their usage.

  • True
  • False

Answer: False

Explanation: While these tools can greatly improve efficiency, their effectiveness is highly dependent on the team’s understanding and correct usage of them.

The Program Management Professional (PgMP) certification is granted by:

  • a) Project Management Institute (PMI)
  • b) International Institute of Business Analysis (IIBA)
  • c) Scrum Alliance
  • d) None of the above

Answer: a) Project Management Institute (PMI)

Explanation: PgMP certification is a globally recognized credential offered by PMI.

True or False: Industry best practices are rigid and cannot be adjusted to meet an organization’s unique needs.

  • True
  • False

Answer: False

Explanation: Industry best practices can, and should, be adjusted and customized to better align with an organization’s unique situation and needs.

Interview Questions

What is the key objective of a governance framework in program management?

A governance framework in program management provides strategic direction, ensures projects are aligned with the organization’s goals, provides a standard decision-making process, and maintains control over the program’s finances and resources to drive efficiency and consistency.

Which aspect of program management involves determining what resources are necessary for program activities and managing their allocation?

Managing program finance and resources is the aspect of program management that involves determining resource needs and managing their allocation.

What is a key benefit of using industry best practices in program management?

Using industry best practices in program management can lead to increased efficiency, consistent application of techniques and strategies, and improved program performance.

Name a commonly used tool in project and program management?

Gantt Charts is a common tool used for planning and scheduling in project and program management.

How does maintaining program and project management standards contribute to achieving program objectives?

Maintaining program and project management standards ensures a consistency in processes which reduces risks, increases efficiency, and helps to deliver program objectives more effectively.

What is the primary purpose of reporting in program management?

Reporting in program management provides stakeholders with information on the status of the program, including progress, issues, financial stats, risks, and future expectations.

In terms of program management, what does ‘governance’ mean?

In program management, ‘governance’ refers to the framework of rules, processes and practices that control how a program is managed and ensures alignment with organization’s objectives.

What is the role of a Program Management Office (PMO) in program governance?

A Program Management Office (PMO) typically has a role in setting standards, monitoring compliance, providing training and tools, and performing audits to ensure program governance is effective.

What does a risk management plan involves in program management?

A risk management plan in program management involves identifying potential risks, assessing their impact on the program, developing mitigation strategies, and monitoring and controlling the risks throughout the program.

What role do stakeholders play in program management governance?

Stakeholders play a key role in program management governance by providing strategic guidance, making decisions, approving changes, and playing an active role in program oversight.

How can communication management contribute to the effectiveness of program management?

Effective communication management ensures that all team members and stakeholders have the necessary information, fosters collaboration, reduces misunderstandings, and enhances decision-making process in program management.

Why is performance measurement important in program management?

Performance measurement is critical to determine how effectively and efficiently a program is achieving its objectives, identify areas for improvement, make informed decisions, and provide accountability.

How can consistent application of project management standards contribute to efficiency in program management?

Consistent application of project management standards can contribute to efficiency by providing a systematic approach, reducing variations, increasing predictability, and improving the quality of program deliverables.

How does the application of project and program management tools contribute to the success of a program?

The application of project and program management tools improves planning, coordination, communication, tracking and managing of resources which ultimately leads to increased productivity and successful implementation of the program.

Why it is crucial to align program and project management with organizational standards?

Aligning program management with organizational standards ensures that the program is coherent with the organization’s mission, vision, and strategic objectives, and allows for better resource allocation, risk management and strategic plans execution.

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