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

Case Study

Working with Peterborough City Council

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.

“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

VertoGrid – The new work collaboration platform for STP and ICS organisations

Verto is used today by numerous NHS CCGs, Trusts, AHSNs, Councils and LEPs across the country to collaborate, share information, monitor and manage their projects and programmes.

To support the aims of the 44 STP and ICS organisations across the country, TMI Systems recognised the challenges faced in achieving a secure platform for collaborative working across the multiple organisations that make up each footprint and worked in partnership with several STPs to understand their needs and develop a solution that allows them to work effectively together.  STPs aim to work in collaboration to achieve improved patient experience whilst striving for financial sustainability. TMI developed VertoGrid to proactively manage their transformation programmes, capture outputs and link them to their outcomes ensuring effective reporting of achievement.

Developed in partnership with STPs, VertoGrid supports collaborative working both locally and regionally across member organisations. Key benefits include:


Local programme management for each organisation

VertoGrid enables each STP or ICS member organisation to have their own instance of Verto to share documents and manage their projects and programmes. This can be specifically tailored to their needs, using their preferred approach and methodology.


Connects organisations and teams across the STP or ICS

VertoGrid connects each organisation across the STP or ICS region. Individual users can collaborate on shared projects, share documents, chat, message and report on programmes and projects across their region.


Local and STP wide reporting

Each organisation can record benefits and costs into a common set of fields and produce region-wide reports across their VertoGrid network.

Want to find out more?

Download our information sheet


Aylesbury Vale CCG cloud project management

Case Study

Working with
NHS Aylesbury Vale and Chiltern Clinical Commissioning Groups

Buckinghamshire CCG cloud project management

Verto- Supporting CCG cloud project management

NHS Aylesbury Vale Clinical Commissioning Group (AVCCG) is federated with NHS Chiltern Clinical Commissioning Group (CCCG). They are among the 207 CCGs across England responsible for the planning and commissioning of healthcare services for their local area. Each CCG must assess its local needs, decide on its priorities and buy appropriate services.

CCGs have to regularly report on their plans and progress to NHS England, to their local Health and Wellbeing Board and to the public in their area. Their success is measured on how much they improve outcomes.

Aylesbury Vale and Chiltern CCGs are made up of 52 member GP practices over seven localities. They serve a population of more than 530,000 and have an annual budget in excess of £670 million.

Together the CCGs seek to: “Improve the quality of services provided, the experience of patients when using those services and most importantly to improve the health outcomes for the people we serve.”

They are both part of the Buckinghamshire, Oxfordshire and Berkshire West Sustainability and Transformation Plan (STP), which involves 27 health and care organizations: seven NHS CCGs, six NHS trusts and 14 local authorities. In June 2017 Buckinghamshire was announced as one of eight national areas to develop integrated working, known as an Accountable Care System.

What Aylesbury Vale and Chiltern CCGs wanted to achieve

AVCCG and CCCG were using a manual process to manage their many projects and programmes, both within their own organization and for their work as part of the STP. This took up a lot of time and meant they had no way to see all the projects they were involved in or the progress and outcomes each project was making.

It was particularly time consuming for them to produce reports as they had to gather information from a number of places and that was often in different formats.

The CCGs wanted to make better use of their time and be able to more easily monitor and report on all their projects and programmes.

How were helping Aylesbury Vale and Chiltern CCGs Achieve their goals

We started working with AVCCG and CCCG in September 2016. After we’d set up Verto, we trained their project management office team (PMO) on how to use it and how to configure it suit their needs. The PMO then rolled the training out to staff across the CCGs. They went live with Verto in November 2016.

Because the PMO were able to configure Verto to meet their specific needs, AVCCG and CCCG now have a transparent system that allows them to see the lifecycle of all of their projects and programmes. They also have standard processes that all staff work to.

Buckinghamshire CCG cloud project management

“With Verto being intuitive and configuration very straightforward, it has enabled us to create a common structured framework that supports project managers in the day to day running of their projects. Verto has very quickly become our central hub for all project information and the reporting ability within the system gives instant real-time data with one version of the truth.”

Elaine Baldwin, Programme Manager, AVCCG & CCCG

The benefits

Verto has given AVCCG and CCCG the standard processes and visibility across projects and programmes they needed. This means they can easily monitor how each project and programme performs and measure the outcomes they achieve. They can also quickly and easily produce accurate reports, which they use to escalate and resolve issues with specific programmes as well as report on the financial savings they have delivered.

Prior to using Verto, AVCCG and CCCG had to use a number of different tools in different places to manage risk. Now they can use Verto to manage risk across all their projects, and on a corporate scale, as an integral part of their programme and project management work. This means staff only have to enter risks once, linked to their programmes or areas of work.

Now the PMO team produce a Verto update every week. This tells people what is going on with the current projects and programmes, has hints and tips to help users get the most from Verto and introduces new features, such as new reports that are available.

It can be difficult to ask people to adopt a new system and news ways of working. However, AVCCG and CCCG have found it easy to introduce Verto. They have worked directly with staff and have created a local user group so they can receive feedback and continue to develop their use of the system. Though Elaine Baldwin did stress that, “The support invested by our senior management team has been critical and instrumental in making Verto such a success.”

We continue to support AVCCG and CCCG. Together we are working towards having their version of Verto available to all the organizations involved in the Buckinghamshire Accountable Care System and eventually to the whole Buckinghamshire, Oxfordshire
and Berkshire West STP. This will give them a standard management and reporting tool. To date, Buckinghamshire County Council and Buckinghamshire Healthcare NHS Trust are using it.

Try our 30 day free trial

See how Verto can support your organisation

Free trial

West of England Academic Health Science Network

Case Study

Working with
West of England Academic Health Science Network

West of England Academic Health Science Network Logo

Verto- Supporting West of England Academic Health Science Network

The West of England Academic Health Science Network (AHSN) is one of 15 AHSNs set up by NHS England to deliver significant change in the way the health and care sector identifies, develops and adopts innovation.

The West of England AHSN says of its purpose: ‘We are catalysts, creating the right conditions to facilitate change across whole health and social care communities, with a clear focus on improving outcomes for citizens.’

To meet this purpose they provide a range of support to the region’s health and social care sector. They help develop the very best care and experience for patients and the provision of best value services. Their priority has always been to involve their whole network, which includes all the NHS commissioners and providers and the universities of Bath, Bristol and the West of England.

The improvement West of England AHSN wants to make to its programme and project management

In March 2018, NHS England will renew it licenses for AHSNs. As part of this renewal process, the West of England AHSN wants to improve how it manages its projects.

The AHSN currently uses a paper-based system. And both their staff team and the projects they deliver are diverse. As a result, their projects are managed and reported on in different ways.

To improve this, the AHSN, in response to requests from its staff, is setting up a programme management office (PMO). The PMO team will develop consistent project management practices and support staff across the AHSN in delivering them.

As part of this change, the West of England AHSN knew they wanted to move to a cloud-based project management software system. They also wanted to be able to tailor the software to suit their specific needs and preferences. Having talked to other AHSNs and clinical commissioning groups about the software they use and their experiences with it, they chose Verto.

How were helping West of England AHSN deliver this improvement

We’re still in the early stages of working with West of England AHSN. Initially, we ran training with the new PMO team to show them how to configure Verto in line with their needs. They were then able to transfer their offline project data onto the new platform.

Once this build was nearly complete, we ran further training with the PMO so they can roll the system out to their wider staff team before it goes live in March 2018.

West of England Academic Health Science Network Logo

“It’s been challenging trying to build an online project management system that works for such a dynamic and varied organization such as ours. The Verto team has been a great support in our goal to introduce a system which gives a repository of information, supports our approach to reporting, and ultimately helps create the right culture to flourish in our delivery of some really ambitious projects across the West of England and further afield.”

Kevin Hunter, Patient Safety Programme Manager, West of England AHSN

The benefits West of England AHSN is expecting Verto to bring

The AHSN is expecting to see a number of benefits from their move to Verto.

Having one clear structure and a consistent approach to how they manage their projects will help them realize efficiencies and work smarter.

One of the ways they intend to work smarter is by using Verto’s instant messaging tool to cut down on the number of emails people in the project teams receive. Where appropriate, using messaging in place of email will make communication more timely and prevent threads getting lost in over-full inboxes.

Linked to this, Verto’s document store will allow the AHSN’s team to store all their project documents in one place. This will make it quick and easy for them to share information and find what they need. And Verto’s inbuilt document control tool means they will always be looking at the most up-to-date version of any file.

Moving to cloud project management

The AHSN have configured Verto to measure what they need. So with Verto’s clever reporting tools they can produce reports from the information they choose at the touch of a button. This is key as they need to report both internally and externally to NHS England.

Verto will give West of England AHSN a very clear and detailed view of all their projects. They intend to use this to hold people to account across the organization and improve governance at all levels. They also intend to use this robust data to give them an accurate understanding of what each project, and the different elements of each project, costs to deliver.

The West of England AHSN works in partnership with a number of organizations. Many of these organizations also use Verto. The AHSN is hoping that by using the same platform, partner organizations will be better able to report to each other, share best practice and further collaborate. This is something we are working closely on with a number of organizations nationally to help make happen.

Ultimately, West of England AHSN is expecting Verto to give them clear evidence and a historic record of the change they have delivered. They will use this to demonstrate their achievements, write case studies so they can share best practice and gain national recognition, in part by entering awards. This will help their work have a wider reach and greater impact.

Try our 30 day free trial

See how Verto can support your organisation

Free trial