A partnership approach to project management drives lasting success

project management

Working with large government programs in the Defence or Rail sectors requires a number of industry-specific factors. You may have an excellent product or service, with industry-leading expertise, and a strong history of successful client delivery. But to ensure you can contribute to a Defence or Rail supply chain, you need to obtain or seek out the right project management skills.

Delivering successful government projects is often a combination of several factors such as the right strategy adopted, the people and partnerships formed, the innovation-led solution that an organisation delivers, as well as preparing compliant and technically accurate documentation. 

As a consulting firm that provides solutions to clients across a number of sectors, Systematiq’s focus has always been on building meaningful partnerships where they can add value, implement a strong project management strategy, and utilise skills that complement their clients’ capabilities. 

Brydon Johnson, Systematiq’s director of Business Development has worked extensively with both SMEs and larger primes to deliver large Defence projects and provide specialist support where needed the most. 

“Defence projects are becoming increasingly complex and time consuming. A project management approach offers specialist technical support and management, as well as surge capability and mutual benefits in a partnership arrangement,” Johnson said. 

Partnership arrangements reduce risk 

Most organisations don’t have the people needed to sufficiently resource a large government project. They often need to recruit or ramp up capacity in a short timeframe. They also may not be familiar with Defence terminology or process. 

Providing the ability to develop a partnership approach reduces a company’s risk to ensure they deliver to established project milestones. It also frees up internal resources for delivering internal needs and focusing on core business capabilities. 

For example, if your business are experts at fabricating specialist components, focus on that aspect of the project as efficiently as possible. Working with a project management company will ensure that the various elements of planning, scheduling, documentation, and logistics can be managed by specialist practitioners. 

When Chemring Australia won a contract to supply and deliver an electronic surveillance system to Defence under Project Land 500 they turned to Systematiq to provide the Project Management Services required to successfully compete the project on time. 

Steve Dartnell, GM Force Protection with Chemring Australia reflected on the benefit of partnering with Systematiq for project management support. 

“Chemring Australia’s core business is advanced manufacturing and Land 500 was our first major capital acquisition project win. We didn’t have the expertise in-house to guide us through the process of delivering a complex ASDEFCON project for Defence so we looked for a partner to provide us with that capability,” Dartnell said.

“Systematiq was an ideal fit, providing us with access to a range personnel with a deep understanding of Defence’s acquisition process – not just the ‘how’ but also the ‘why’. That we were able to deliver our system successfully, along with the range of engineering and support CDRLs required as part of the contract – on time and on budget, was due in the main to the excellent professional support we received from the Systematiq team.” 

Long term partnerships provide continuity 

Most successful larger engineering and manufacturing organisations have expertise that makes them market leaders and innovators. However, delivering to Defence brings a new set of challenges unique to this sector: most of the work is project based and requires a different approach to managing delivery over a long period of time. 

Systematiq is ideally placed to support larger businesses manage Defence projects, through their in-depth understanding of the Defence environment. This allows larger organisations to continue to focus their efforts on R&D, business development and growth, while outsourcing the day-to-day delivery and management of key milestones on long term projects. 

Paul Gibbs, program director with Systematiq shares some of the benefits of implementing a project management framework: “Project Management support allows team members to stay task focused and thereby gain valuable extra time to deliver the best results. 

“Systematiq’s broadly experienced consultants keep projects on time and on target ensuring that all deliverables are kept to the correct standards required to satisfy requirements and reduce the stress of project delivery.” 

An example of such a partnership is the work that Systematiq is providing Electro Optic Systems (EOS) with delivery of their remote weapon system for the T2000 Turret, on the Land 400 program. EOS and Systematiq have been working together for three years, with the project team scaling up and down their services as required, while the technology and systems are developed and tested. 

Brydon Johnson, Systematiq’s business development director commented on the benefit of early engagement and partnership:  “During the initial work with EOS on LAND 400 phase 2, Systematiq helped to develop the ILS aspects of the RFT response, ensuring that EOS were positioned to deliver a robust and compliant support system.

“Through early engagement, Systematiq was able to help define the support system with EOS and ensure that this was then articulated in the RFT response. As a result, Systematiq was ideally placed to help with delivering the ILS artefacts required under the contract, which have been worked on as a part of jointly delivering the project together.” 

Grant Sanderson, CEO Defence – EOS talks about the value of the partnership: “Systematiq have been integral to the development and delivery of our remote weapon system for Land 400 Phase 2,” he said. “They have provided their expertise across the PMO life cycle and assisted our Project Manager to deliver the work streams in what is a complex and long term ASDEFCON project. Their work is of an extremely high standard and their ability to seamlessly embed into our environment is an asset to the organisation.” 

Rail project management requires a similar methodology 

Most organisations underestimate how complex and time consuming government project delivery can be. While Systematiq can provide surge capacity at short notice, it finds greater benefits and efficiencies are realised for their customers earlier on in project planning. 

Systematiq has extensive experience in project procurement support, as well as delivery. This end-to-end solution means that they can offer insight and accuracy in quoting and business case development, then in resourcing and planning the stages of project delivery. 

It’s vital to incorporate a project management methodology that adheres to industry standards, which utilises risk management principles. This therefore ensures Systematiq achieves the best outcomes for our clients. 

Their management team are fully trained in industry-best practice methodologies including PRINCE2 and PMBoK and are therefore able to deliver to their clients’ preferences. Their robust ERP and quality system enable them to effectively utilise both approaches. 

Rail projects often benefit from the rigour and best practice that is used in delivering Defence projects, as Systematiq’s director of Service Delivery, Richard De Nardi explains. 

“Our strong history and proven capability in both Defence and Rail project delivery demonstrates our attention to detail, rigour and best practice when delivering projects for our clients,” Nardi said.  

This was demonstrated when delivering a project management plan and competency guidelines to Yarra Trams. Systematiq’s relationship management and pragmatic problem-solving enabled its team to meet Yarra Trams’ requests and expectations within a short timeframe. Engaging Systematiq also helped Yarra Trams in future-proofing the asset owner by providing the appropriate governance for further project management. 

“Through this project, Systematiq and Yarra Trams developed a working relationship built on mutual understanding and flexibility,” Nardi said. “Our team responded to a complex environment with methodical and logical solutions that added value to Yarra Trams’ project management framework.” 

Strength in building capability and collaboration 

By taking a joint approach with their clients, Systematiq is able to bring their extensive knowledge of our governments’ procurement systems to help position a client prior to the release of an RFT and make sure that the government authority has an understanding of the value proposition of their client. They then transfer this knowledge to the client and guide them through the process so they build their capability for future work. 

“Teaming early helps both the client and Systematiq to work on a value proposition and socialise this with the end client to ensure they are expecting our response and that our response addresses their pain points,” Johnson said. “This also positions Systematiq to develop the response as a joint venture, with the reward being both companies delivering the project together.”

Systematiq have been building relationships and delivering successful projects directly for state and federal governments, as well as with Primes, SMEs and partners, for over 11 years. Their strength is in building pro-active relationships with their clients so they create long-term partnerships. 

They like to put into practice their core values of being Adult, Reliable, Responsive and Trustworthy – this drives the way they work internally and with clients, especially in our ongoing COVID-related work environment that has led to flexible, innovative project delivery. Systematiq staff embrace this culture as they help their clients move forward. 

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