Introduction to Public Sector Project Management

This one-day workshop is designed to introduce public sector managers to the need for project management, the benefits of it to agencies, a project management framework applicable to the public sector, and the challenges of applying good project management in their organizations.

This workshop is compliant with the project management methods established by the Project Management Institute (PMI®), the world's largest and most respected association of project managers. It complies with the Project Management Body of Knowledge (the PMBOK® Guide, Fourth Edition) and the Government Extension to the PMBOK® Guide, Third Edition, which is also a PMI® publication.

Public-sector projects can be more difficult than many private-sector projects because they:

  • Operate in an environment of often-conflicting goals and outcomes

  • Involve many layers of stakeholders with varied interests

  • Must placate political interests and operate under media scrutiny

  • Are allowed little tolerance for failure

  • Operate in organizations that often have a difficult time identifying outcome measures and missions

  • Are required to be performed under constraints imposed by administrative rules and often-cumbersome policies and processes

  • Require the cooperation and performance of agencies outside the project team for purchasing, hiring, and other functions

  • Must make do with existing staff resources more often than private-sector projects

  • Are performed in organizations that may not be comfortable or used to directed action and project success

Course Outline

Module 1: Introduction to the workshop

  • In this module, we will detail the course objectives and schedule and identify participant interests and concerns

Module 2: The changing public-sector workplace and the role of project management

  • In this module, we'll examine how the public sector has changed and why project management is an organizational imperative. We'll examine the competing values model of the organization to gain insights into the demands on public agencies and the tools that they might apply to meet those increasing demands.

Module 3: The project management framework

  • In this module, we'll examine the project management framework defined by the PMBOK® Guide, Third Edition and the Government Extension to the PMBOK® Guide, Third Edition. We'll define key terms and identify critical organizational success factors for projects and the necessary skills for public-sector project managers.

Module 4: Three essential methods for successfully managing public-sector projects

  • In this module, we'll examine three tools that are essential to public-sector project management: the project charter, the work breakdown structure, and risk management. We'll provide an opportunity for participants to apply these tools to their projects..

Module 5: Workshop wrap-up

  • In this module, we'll wrap-up the workshop, make concluding comments, address remaining questions, and evaluate the workshop


This workshop is targeted to public-sector managers who see the need for improved productivity and greater success in achieving designated public outcomes. No experience in project management is required.