The BBC realised the value of their senior project staff achieving the APM Chartership as it is a clear recognition of their proven project capability and professionalism – an important aspect to a publicly funded organisation that needs to clearly demonstrate efficiency and a high standard of ethics.
The BBC spoke to the APM with regard to having a cohort of staff that they would like to put forward for Chartership. The APM suggested support from one of their approved suppliers and, after discussion with Provek and their ChPP Senior Consultant, the BBC decided to go ahead with the route to Chartership, supported by Provek.
Over 30 staff expressed an interest in the scheme and Provek were chosen to run the ChPP support package initial cohort.
Candidates were selected for the scheme, using Provek’s Readiness Assessment Checker, together with their agreement and that of their line managers, to a set of commitments, including time to study and prepare their applications, funding for the application fees through training budgets and their endorsement of the candidates.
Nineteen candidates were accepted onto the scheme under the APM’s Route 3, for those who did not have a professional qualification but met the experience eligibility criteria.
Two application preparation workshops were held in Oct 19, led by Provek’s ChPP Senior Consultant Neil Mooney, each with approx. 10 candidates, who selected up to 4 complex projects, programmes or a portfolio, for which they documented their responsibilities and 2 competences, each against the professional practice assessment criteria.
Over the following weeks, Neil provided each applicant with feedback and supporting materials. Christine Murphy and Mark Smith from BBC, with the support of the APM, also provided continuing professional development opportunities, to help candidates reach the minimum 35 hours CPD requirement.
The first 15 candidates submitted their applications and in early 2020, ten of these were approved for the following interview stage. Neil then held an interview preparation workshop, giving the candidates the opportunity to practice answering questions on technical knowledge, professional practice, and ethics, for their 2-hour interview.
The interviews started in February with two APM assessors meeting with the candidates in London, but after lockdown restrictions were introduced, as a result of the coronavirus epidemic, these continued online.
The first successful candidates were notified at the end of March and a second batch in May 2020. These candidates represent all areas of the BBC, from Design and Engineering, TV and Radio Content, News, Finance and Operations.
The success of these candidates will help the BBC with the delivery of critical programmes, protecting their benefits, saving costs, and strengthening their negotiating position with suppliers and reputation with the external auditors.
It is also expected that these candidates will help in the development, mentoring and retention of other project managers, to deliver future project capability for the BBC.
It is an important part of a wider development approach for project and change management that also sees the BBC investing in all levels of career development and includes recent success also with level 4 project management apprenticeships.