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Verto helps the Innovation Agency

Case Study

Verto helps the Innovation Agency deliver innovation programmes across the health economy

Using Verto Software
Innovation Agency - Academic Health Science Network

The Innovation Agency is the Academic Health Science Network (AHSN) for the North West Coast.  It is a catalyst for the spread of innovation across the health and social care economies, helping facilitate change to improve health, drive down the cost of care and stimulate economic growth.


NHS providers


Clinical Commissioning Groups



The Challenge for the Innovation Agency

The Innovation Agency needed a tool to help underpin a significant and rapid expansion, from 15 to 64 people in 18 months.  This required a more systemic approach and greater structure and governance to managing their projects and programmes.

They wanted to promote integration between their teams and move away from working across numerous spreadsheets and on shared drives which were not always suitable to the tasks required of them.

The teams also had to organise and report on the vast amount of information held on complex spreadsheets which were bulky and difficult to analyse.  Reporting was also a challenge.

Innovation Agency Chaos

With the rapid growth in staff numbers, the Innovation Agency knew that they needed a tool that would:

  • Be simple to learn, use and understand
  • Break the ‘cultural spell’ of spreadsheets
  • Enable the project delivery teams to work to a consistent process and collaborate effectively
  • Be able to easily and accurately monitor and report on project performance and outcomes
  • Put all their project information in one place without the need for version control and sharing large files
  • Be configurable to their working practice and governance

The PMO wanted to embrace ‘matrix working’ with real emphasis on collaboration.  They knew that this meant configuring a system that could be used by a wide variety of users with differing levels of project management maturity. They identified that they needed a system that could cope with the full spectrum of simple to complex project management elements and hybrid methodologies.

Our Solution

The Innovation Agency chose to roll out Verto as it was widely in use across the AHSN Network, especially the South West AHSN who were engaged in using the platform to support decision-making.

Kerrin Whaite, Innovation Agency Project Manager and Assurance Officer, is responsible for assurance and monitoring of projects and programmes for the spread and adoption of innovation, including planning and delivery of various initiatives and supporting communities of practice across the wide network of partners.

Innovation Agency Academic Health Science Network for the North West Coast Logo

“We chose Verto as we were particularly impressed with the flexibility of the system which allowed us to really build it the way we wanted it – it wasn’t a rigid system where you’re just stuck with the way it is. The ability to choose to show or hide functions is great as it means we can start simply and yet we know all the functionality is there as our project management capabilities grow”.

Kerrin Whaite, Innovation Agency Project Manager and Assurance Officer

The Innovation Agency decided to configure their system around their six business goals as this gave them a cross-team view of their programme activity and performance:

  • Goal 1: Support system transformation through the adoption of innovations that enhance quality and value.
  • Goal 2: Deliver an Innovation Exchange to accelerate innovation into practice and drive economic growth.
  • Goal 3: Develop and connect the digital health and care sector
  • Goal 4: Deliver the NHS Improvement Patient Safety Collaborative programme
  • Goal 5: Collaborate with the National AHSN Network
  • Goal 6: Support a culture for innovation

Twenty-five programmes were spread across these six business goals with between 70-80 projects and a mix of local and national programmes.

The benefits

Across the business Verto is being used to manage a varied set of projects for the AHSN Network’s national programmes, including PReCePT, ESCAPE-Pain, the Innovation Technology Payment (ITP) and the Innovation Technology Tariff (ITT), and the Innovation Agency’s local projects, including Connected Health Cities, Population Health and more, which cover the North West Coast footprint.

“Verto has been great in supporting the growth of our business. With lots of new team members and partners, Verto means we can very quickly and easily bring our stakeholders on board across the full range of projects they will be involved with.”

The system has provided a structured approach to creating a project from business case to tasks and milestones, risks and issues, costs and benefits – incorporating all the critical elements to support effective project delivery within a defined methodology.  This in turn feeds the business’ quarterly highlight report which provides a clear picture of programmes and performance across business goals.

Kerrin says: “We have built it so that it follows a simple flow that is intuitive and makes sense across the organisation and enables it to be used by team members who are not professional project managers.  The system is so simple to use and gives us visibility across the business – it’s easy to get a very clear picture of all our project information in one place.”

Verto has helped reduce duplication.  Previously, stakeholders were doubling up on tasks through simple lack of communication and knowledge – now they have a bird’s eye view of all of the activity on projects and can allocate resources much more effectively.

The Innovation Agency has established a Business Operations Group to provide a project governance framework, evaluate proposed business cases and monitor project scope.    They have developed a process to use tasks and milestone data to record and collect data required for the Local Implementation Plan report, which is used to measure quarterly performance of national innovation programmes, saving time and duplication of effort and resources across the organisation.

The information and framework for this report has also been used to configure their quarterly highlight reports which are used in discussions with their partners to track interactions, working in harmony with their CRM system to create a full picture of collaborative projects.

Using Verto Easily

Kerrin says: “It’s been great to see our teams really using the system, really understanding its value – and that in turn is making their lives easier in the practical benefits of easier, faster reporting and an appreciation of what is happening across the business.”

Running a programme management office requires constant review of project management maturity and capabilities.  The Innovation Agency is planning a series of audits to enable them to see which elements of the powerful Verto functionality the organisation is ready to use next through the support of their own coaching academy and moddle software to enable their people and the system to develop together within a supported environment.

The information and framework for this report has also been used to configure their quarterly highlight reports which are used in discussions with their partners to track interactions, working in harmony with their CRM system to create a full picture of collaborative projects.

Kerrin says: “Our experience of the Verto client support team has been an example of excellent service. They have been fantastic, lightning fast responses to any queries we’ve raised and refreshingly proactive – we don’t have to chase – they’re on it!   I wish all of our business systems were supported like that.”

The Innovation agency are now one of eight AHSNs using Verto.  They have created their own Network Group and are exploring how the system will enable them to collaborate across projects, for example through the Verto Grid which is an innovative platform for clients to share and collaborate on projects with a centralised reporting framework.

“With Verto as a common system, we’re looking to give people the confidence – and the confidence of security – to break down barriers, collaborate and share information.”

Into the future

As the health sector continues to face growing challenges, the Innovation Agency will be at the forefront of the search and identification of new innovations and technologies with Verto at the heart of a maturing programme management approach.

Verto will also enable the Innovation Agency to undertake a rolling viability review of proposed future project business cases, supporting system transformation through the adoption of innovations that enhance quality and value.

The Innovation Agency will continue to embrace the culture change of migrating to the Verto programme management system and developing the value it brings.

With the lateral thinking that goes with working in a forward-looking environment, Kerrin was quick to observe: “Going forward it will be great to use Verto to showcase projects and innovations at the industry events and expos the Innovation Agency attends to show evidence of our programme and project outcomes and benefits. We hope that the evidence will be very persuasive to other organisations to adopt some of the initiatives and innovations that we have developed.  The smart use of Verto to collect powerful evidential data will be a great marketing tool for us.”

The Innovation Agency will continue to embrace the culture change of migrating to the Verto programme management system and developing the value it brings.

Innovation Agency Solution

To find out more about how Verto can help your organisation contact or call us on 0118 334 6200

Camden Clinical Commissioning Group

Working with Camden CCG

Case Study

Working with Camden Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG)

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Camden NHS logo | Verto

Camden CCG is a clinically led and member driven CCG with 35 GP practices across the London Borough of Camden.  With a population of approximately 254,000 and a predicted population increase of almost 23,000 in the next 10 years the CCG continues to experience growing pressure on local health and care services for which they must assess local needs, agree priorities and commission services.

Camden CCG is one of the five CCGs part of North Central London, with shared commissioning arrangements that aim to deliver the NHS Long Term Plan as it looks to move to an Integrated Care System.


Population to serve


Population increase over the next 10 years


GP practices

The Challenge for Camden CCG

Camden CCG identified that they needed a tool to help track and monitor their commissioning priorities, including their QIPP (Quality Innovation Productivity and Prevention) programme of quality improvement and efficiency savings.

They wanted to work in a standardised way and be able to view, monitor and report on their portfolio of projects across the organisation.  Prior to Verto, reporting requirements were very intensive and laborious.  Information came from multiple diverse sources in varying formats, mainly spreadsheets, documents and emails which required manual and time-consuming co-ordination.   Segments of the organisation held data in siloed parts of the CCG’s intranet system but there was no single place where the whole programme picture was visible.  The CCG also wanted to be able to view and report on information ‘through different lenses’ to be able to produce meaningful information up and down the organisation.

Camden CCG knew that different project leads had varying levels of project experience, so the tool chosen had to:

  • be quick and easy to learn and use
  • enable the project delivery team to work to consistent processes
  • be able to easily and accurately monitor and report on project performance and outcomes
  • provide a birds-eye view of project implementation
  • reflect their working practices and governance

Our Solution

Camden CCG chose Verto’s cloud-based programme and project management solution to manage their portfolio of projects and QIPP monitoring and reporting.   Verto was chosen as it was extremely configurable and gave the CCG maximum flexibility and usability.

“The transition to Verto took place with very little disruption.  Verto was configured to reflect our project management structure and processes and then we blended that with good practice recommendations that the Verto team suggested based on their experience to get the best possible system”.

Stephanie King, QIPP Business Manager, Camden CCG

Stephanie’s role involves encouraging project leads to provide project updates with Verto now used across a number of different programmes of work including:

  • Primary care
  • Community care
  • Unplanned care
  • Planned care
  • Mental Health
  • Children’s and Young People
  • Quality and Clinical Effectiveness
  • Continuing Healthcare

Reporting is now done automatically using configured reports to inform the CCG and NCL Governance Framework.  Verto is used to assess and manage project risks and issues to ensure timely intervention.

The system also provides a substantial document repository which provides organised traceability and project provenance.

The benefits

With Verto, the CCG’s updates on their transformation and QIPP projects are held in one place.  This meant that they can quickly run reports at various levels from sponsor highlight reports to detailed management reports knowing that the information was ‘live’, accurate and able to be analysed at different levels and from different perspectives.

“The way that Verto provides a single version of the truth across all of our projects is fantastic.  At any time, you know that the information you are looking at represents the most up to date view of what’s going on.  The information we get from Verto enables us to swiftly pinpoint projects that need time and attention”.

Stephanie King, QIPP Business Manager, Camden CCG

Verto has now been in use at Camden for over two years now.  Plenty of time to really test the mettle of the system and cement the relationship between the Verto team and the CCG.

Verto gives the QIPP planning and monitoring team reliable and current updates at the touch of a button.  This means they can now measure progress, project future outcomes, track benefits and plan with more confidence.

Camden CCG have embraced the wider significance of the system delivers around business continuity.   Because Verto holds a comprehensive historical record within its change history function, new staff or people covering leave can very quickly see the life-story of a project and are not bogged down chasing an understanding of what has gone on before.

“It’s been so great to hear so many of our users say, ‘that’s really easy isn’t it?’.  They like the look and feel of the system and the fact that it helps make the process of keeping on top of their projects just really, really easy.”

Stephanie King, QIPP Business Manager, Camden CCG

We continue to support Camden CCG within North Central London as partners plan to move towards an Integrated Care System.  The CCG is also developing a borough-based partnership to delivery early integration priorities for 2019/20 which will involve new programmes of work, collaboration and project delivery.

To find out more about how Verto can help your organisation contact or call us on 0118 334 6200

How to get new project sponsors on board

person stands on stage out of focus. People in foreground with their hands up in supportGetting the right sponsor on board is a key ingredient in the success of any project.  Ideally, the sponsor is not just a figurehead or nominal stakeholder, but also an active and involved member of the project management process. The sponsor can help ensure that the project goals are aligned with the organisation’s overall aims and strategy,  build support from other executives and senior stakeholders, and deal with any resistance.  The sponsor plays a vital role. Unlike the project manager, who is dealing with day-to-day tactics and execution, the sponsor takes a more strategic position, overseeing the project rather than managing it, but is just as essential to creating conditions for project success.  It is therefore vital to attract high-quality project sponsors, which is never an easy task.  

Overcome the barriers

Busy, high-level executives can be understandably reluctant to take on the role of project sponsor. This is exacerbated by the fact that many senior executives are not sure how much time it will absorb or what the degree of commitment required will be.  They want confidence in the availability and quality of information that will be available to them when going into bat.   Even those who understand the strategic nature of the role may be concerned about getting involved in the management side of the project. This is where having the right project management software in place can have a big impact.  

Generate information impact

Verto project management software helps project managers demonstrate to potential sponsors exactly how their projects are run. This can help get project sponsors on board, by showing them how the project will operate, with clear data, effective task management, easy updates, and well-defined areas of responsibility. A potential sponsor can see for themselves how the project management process can be centralised, with integrated dashboards, clear visual reporting, and effective risk management.   As regular users know, Verto software has many benefits. It allows for one-touch reporting, instant communication, less time spent in meetings, and automatic version control of all project files. Depending on the project, it can effectively eliminate the need for most one-on-one communication, and integrate all necessary information into shared, easily accessible dashboards that everyone involved can check at any time.  

Don't waste their time (and yours)

A single work management system is going to be a highly attractive way of working to most potential sponsors. They are not looking to add more meetings, phone calls, emails, reporting procedures and paperwork to their schedule. They are looking for a way to make an impact on the organisation by guiding a project to completion through involvement at a strategic and supervisory level. Verto can demonstrate to them exactly how that is not only possible but also easy to implement, with all necessary channels already in place, to aid them in their role.  Verto project management software helps project managers to attract high-quality project sponsors easily. The software clearly demonstrates exactly how the project management process will work, and proves to potential sponsors that they will have all the tools needed to fulfil their duties efficiently and effectively. To find out more, contact us at register for our 30 day free trial! 

Working With Peterborough City Council

Working with Peterborough City Council

Case Study

Working with Peterborough City Council

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Peterborough City Council Logo

Implementing a cloud-based approach for project and programme management

After achieving £3.2 million of annual savings, Peterborough City Council had a further £20.8 million of cumulative savings to deliver. With over 70 individual projects the council introduced rigorous performance monitoring and clear project ownership responsibilities to ensure delivery of anticipated financial benefits from new, more efficient operational practices.


Savings to deliver


Population to serve



The challenge

As the transformation programme grew and gained pace, it became impractical to manage project ownership and performance using spread-sheets and emails.

Failure to achieve project deadlines could damage performance in connected operations, and jeopardise the delivery of strategic objectives and financial targets.

There was a need for one central place where project teams, stakeholders and senior management could get a clear overview of the whole business transformation programme.


Our Solution

Peterborough City Council engaged TMI Systems Ltd to develop a Cloud-based application for programme and project management, reporting and work collaboration.

A joint team was established to develop the solution made up of project managers, programme office teams and developers.

The council’s PPM methodology, governance and risk management were all incorporated into the new service.

The system - Verto


  • Allows real-time sharing of information with project teams, stakeholders and senior management.
  • Enables management and monitoring of all projects from initial ideas to completion.
  • Provides a robust system for tracking project deadlines and key delivery dates.
  • Gives visibility of end-to-end savings and other non-financial benefits.

Peterborough City Council Logo

“The new benefits realisation methodology provides the high level overview required by senior management alongside the detailed project plans and benefits data required for effective benefits realisation. It has supported the delivery of significant benefits over the last year.”

Heather Darwin, Business Transformation Manager.

The 10 benefits Peterborough City Council is seeing

  1. Verto embedded the councils PPM methodology in a simple to use system
  2. Greatly improved control and governance with all project workflow and approvals online
  3. Clear assessment of risks and dependencies across the programme
  4. Alignment of project outputs with performance outcomes
  5. Simplified online reporting
  6. Removal of data gathering and duplication in PMO
  7. Medium-term financial strategy targets achieved £23.1 million cumulative savings over three years
  8. Staff savings of 25% in the programme office due to an automation of reporting process, data capture and removal of duplicate administration activities
  9. A 50% saving on software licence costs
  10. A 30% improvement in resource utilisation through the identification of poorly performing projects leading to remedial action or closure