Improving the value of the Portfolio and Transformation team in a European Automotive company


The portfolio and transformation team provides portfolio management, project management and business analyst services to a wide selection of business customers within this automotive group. The level of perceived quality and value-add varied extremely depending on the customer they were supporting. The team was generally not well regarded with many stakeholders across the wider organisation feeling the team were slow at responding, difficult to work with, had a lack of urgency in engagement especially when reviewing and prioritising new demand, were not agile or flexible enough to meet fast moving business requirements and lacked the processes, skills and capability to meet their needs.  


Project One was engaged to review and recommend improvements to the team’s structure, ways of working, processes, and culture. 


The first step was to understand the current challenges and issues within the portfolio and transformation team as perceived by the wider business stakeholders and teams. A vision and objectives were developed and confirmed with the CIO along with a supporting plan to deliver the review and provide recommendations and an implementation plan. 


The review focused on a number of areas including: 


  • Understanding the challenges and deriving key learnings. A series of interviews with 15 senior internal and external stakeholders were conducted. 
  • Key learnings from the interviews were grouped into consistent themes enabling prioritisation of desired improvements. 
  • A review of planning and reporting alignment across the organisation was also undertaken interviewing 18 representatives from across the wider business. This was further supported by a review of the various tools in use and the resulting tooling challenges in the effective and efficient production of group wide reporting. 
  • The effectiveness of the supply and demand process, management of the business roadmaps, and prioritisation of new projects. 
  • Changes needed to the team’s organisational structure to better meet business needs. 



The improvement themes were categorised and grouped into a set of improvement initiatives that spanned one or more themes. Working with the Transformation and Portfolio Director, these were ranked in priority and impact to both business outcomes, vision and objectives, and success of the team.  


Careful consideration was given to the structure of the team itself and a variety of organisation models were considered along with a review of supporting job descriptions so that they were aligned to the changes being proposed. A preferred option was agreed with the Transformation and Portfolio Director and the HR business Partner.  


The review of governance and reporting processes recommended changes to improve cross-business meeting alignment for a more effective flow of data and reporting. A number of improvements currently underway by the existing team were intercepted and reviewed against the new priorities. 


A report was produced for the CIO, and Transformation and Portfolio Director detailing the process, outcomes, and conclusions of the review. A prioritised list of improvement initiatives, with a supporting roadmap and plan was presented covering: 


  • Organisational design – A recommended new organisation model structure, approach and timeline to achieve along with proposals on job description improvements. 
  • Improving delivery quality – clear definitions, service levels and KPIs. 
  • Brand and culture. 
  • Reporting and data visibility. 
  • Governance and meeting cadence. 
  • Supply and Demand – improving portfolio management and prioritisation of new demand, establishing a robust supply and demand process. 


The team is now in the process of implementing the recommendations. 

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