The development, design, build, finance, long-term operation and maintenance of public infrastructure is complex, time-consuming, often requires very specific skills, and involves many stakeholders with competing interests. Increasingly, public sector organizations are looking for ways to more effectively launch and manage infrastructure assets for their complete useful life.
Most public sector organizations recognize they struggle to solve today’s complex problems. Many of these organizations have trouble solving big complex problems because these organizations have been organized into collections of narrowly focused vertical silos. The long-term management of an infrastructure asset not only requires internal collaboration between departments within a public sector organization, but also normally requires participation from other stakeholders external to the public sector entity. By adopting a “decision-making” team approach (known as the Project Team), it addresses the silo-effect by accelerating decision-making processes, communication flow, and strategy implementation. This team approach may also mitigate the potential for bias by public sector entities to adopt inappropriate solutions for projects, and it also creates the framework through which accountability can be established between all stakeholders.
To ensure these Project Teams keep moving forward, a dedicated champion (the Asset Champion) guides and manages the activities of the Project Team. Asset Champions must be very experienced with all aspects of infrastructure assets and remain independent and unbiased. The Asset Champion ensures timely management of all activities directly connected to the infrastructure asset plan at all stages of its useful life. One of the primary responsibilities of the Asset Champion is to manage communication flow and project flow for the infrastructure plan. For the champion to be most effective, its interests must ideally remain neutral and align with the interests of the public sector organization. All other secrets require both Secrets 1 and 2 to be in place to be most effective.
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