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Project Management System - Raising the Bar

This is a rather unassuming title for such a seismic shift in the way the Hill Robinson project management team will be operating in the future, a bit like the Albert Einstein’s catching title, ‘theory of general relativity`! The Hill Robinson Project Management System (PMS) is designed to standardise the way the process of project management will operate in a new efficient and accountable fashion, raising the bar in the superyacht business space for new build and refit project management and establishing a new industry benchmark.

To get a clearer overview of the new HR PMS client offering, Karl Hartmann and Hill Robinson Senior Project Manager, Kevin Laverty explain: “To start with, I would like to be clear that the initiative to develop this fresh iteration of a PMS tool was the result of close teamwork by all the Hill Robinson project managers. Our work is mainly out in the field so we took the opportunity when all of us got together on various occasions and at the Monaco Yacht Show last year to agree on what project management should mean and how HR PMS would coalesce miriad structures, practices, processes and international standards, into a fully integrated operating system. Finally at the Hill Robinson global seminar in December last year we were able to further detail to the final version, ready to go roll out later this year.

The question is why this newly optimised operating system was developed at this point in time? Kevin continues, ‘One simple fact is that yachts are now much larger and more complex and in parallel, yacht owners are generally more aware of the process of yacht ownership and quite rightly expect industry leading management.

Historically, and perhaps traditionally, the smaller yachts, undergoing refits for instance, often had ad hoc freelance project managers supporting the owner, or the work was simply overseen by the captain. This is fine, but we felt that a much better process was needed to guarantee the deliverables on time, within budget and to the quality required for the owners of larger yachts. However, like many good methodologies, our system is scalable so we can perform well for smaller yachts and refits as well as the larger vessels. To drive this programme forward we have a core of in house employed project managers, plus a network of qualified resources that can be added into the capacity mix.

In developing the HR PMS the team has taken guidance from international industry standards and bodies such as the Association of Project Management (APM) and the Project Management Institute (PMI). At the operational level the system is based around a ‘toolbox’ of software tools allowing individual project managers to scale the implementation to the demands of his or her project, whilst maintaining a consistent project management offering”.

By way of a summary, what are the customer benefits of this fresh Hill Robinson initiative? We are stepping up to engage with the new reality in how to deal with the demands of informed yacht owners who are pushing the boundaries in the development of refit and new build yachts of ever more complex, sophisticated undertakings. The new reality in yachting is that we are dealing with large, multidisciplinary capital projects. Our system means we can work a lot more consistently with our clients. But there is more when we can add into this mix the in-house Hill Robinson financial and legal infrastructure teams and procurement team. Importantly we are adding to our core team by trailing talented specialists in-house to meet the growing demands in this market space.

What do we deliver with this Hill Robinson platform? We can define exactly what the HR Project Management offering is, specify the deliverables and actions, ensure that the correct service and quality assurance is in place, deliver she optimum quality and importantly meet customer expectations in all areas, including the age old project objectives of time, cost and quality”.

Written by: Roy Roberts