© Crown copyright 2019
This publication is licensed under the terms of the Open Government Licence v3.0 except where otherwise stated. To view this licence, visit nationalarchives.gov.uk/doc/open-government-licence/version/3 or write to the Information Policy Team, The National Archives, Kew, London TW9 4DU, or email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Where we have identified any third party copyright information you will need to obtain permission from the copyright holders concerned.
This publication is available at https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/delivery-manager-skills-they-need/delivery-manager-skills-they-need
This content is part of the Digital, Data and Technology (DDaT) Capability Framework which describes the DDaT roles in government and the skills needed to do them.
1. What a delivery manager does
A delivery manager is accountable for the performance of the team.
- build and maintain teams, ensuring they are motivated, collaborating and working well
- identify obstacles and help the team to overcome them
- focus the team on what is most important to the delivery of products and services
- encourage and facilitate continuous improvement of the delivery team
- coach and mentor both team members and others to apply the most appropriate agile and lean tools and techniques
The complexity or breadth of products or teams will vary in this role, depending on the context.
2. What skills they need
A delivery manager needs specific technical skills.
All roles have essential skills, and some have desirable skills.
Each skill has one of 4 skill levels associated with it:
2.1 Essential skills
|Skill||Description of the skill||Skill level||What the skill level means|
|Agile and Lean practices||Has a deep knowledge of and leads on a range of Agile and Lean tools and techniques, with an ability to coach within and outside of their team. Able to represent and be an advocate for these tools and techniques, be innovative and ensure they keep up to date with the latest trends. Able to establish the feedback loop for teams and has responsibility for the translation and measurement of value (what you put in and what you will get out) and how this relates to practical government objectives and the user needs. Able to ensure the team has a situational awareness of what each other is working on. Ensures that working practices are iterated to achieve effective delivery.||Practitioner||Able to identify and compare the best processes or delivery methods to use. Able to recognise when something does not work and encourages a mindset of experimentation. Can adapt and reflect, is resilient and has the ability to see outside of the process. Able to use a blended approach depending on the context. Able to measure and evaluate outcomes. Able to help teams to manage and visualise outcomes.|
|Communicating between the technical and non-technical||Able to communicate effectively across organisational, technical and political boundaries, understanding the context. Able to advocate and communicate what a team does to create trust and authenticity. Can successfully react and respond to challenge.||Practitioner||Able to listen to the needs of the technical and business stakeholders and interpret between them. Able to manage stakeholders’ expectations and be flexible, is capable of proactive and reactive communication. Facilitates difficult discussions within the team or with diverse senior stakeholders.|
|Maintaining delivery momentum||Able to solve issues and unblock problems. Drives teams and sets the pace, ensuring teams are working towards delivery commitments. Able to engage in elements of risk management such as effectively managing and tracking the mitigation of risks. Able to manage various dependencies across teams, departments and government as a whole.||Practitioner||Able to facilitate the delivery flow of a team, managing the pace and tempo. Able to actively address internal and external risks, issues and dependencies including where ownership exists outside the team.|
|Making the process work||Focuses on the outcome. Able to challenge and improve disproportionate organisational processes where it impacts the pace of the team. Able to identify what works best for the team and when to utilise certain processes. Understands that all steps in a process must add value. Able to influence and make positive changes to the organisation.||Expert||Able to identify and challenge organisational processes of increasing complexity and those processes that are unnecessarily complicated. Able to add value and can coach the organisation to inspect and adapt processes. Guides teams through the implementation of a new process.|
|Planning||Able to take a continuous approach to planning, forecasting, estimating, managing uncertainty, metrics and measurements, contingency planning and roadmapping. Able to communicate the plan, planning assumptions and progress to a range of stakeholders. Maintains the cadence of delivery and manages the relationships between different people within and across teams.||Practitioner||Understands the environment and is able to prioritise the most important or highest value tasks. Able to use data to inform planning. Able to manage complex internal and external dependencies. Able to provide delivery confidence. Able to remove blockers or impediments that affect the plan and is able to develop a plan for difficult situations. Ensures teams plan appropriately for their own capacity.|
|Team dynamics and collaboration||Able to build successful delivery teams and understand team styles and how people work together. Able to maintain, influence and motivate a team. Able to give and receive feedback, facilitating the feedback loop. Ensures the health of the team and can facilitate conflict resolution, accelerating team performance. Able to ensure the team is transparent and that the work is understood externally. Able to create an open and collaborative environment to work in, be flexible, adaptable and have a willingness to learn. Able to recognise how people best work together, facilitating the best team makeup depending on the situation. Able to help teams maintain a focus on delivery whilst being aware of the importance of professional development.||Working||Able to bring people together to form a motivated team. Able to empower delivery teams. Able to help create the right environment for a team to work in. Recognises and deals with issues. Able to facilitate the best team makeup depending on the situation.|
2.2 Desirable skills
|Skill||Description of the skill||Skill level||What the skill level means|
|Commercial management||Able to support effective budget management within the constraints of the project. Retains a continued awareness of the budget against actual cost incurred.||Working||Able to act as the point of contact for contracted suppliers. Understands appropriate internal contacts and processes within a government department. Understands how and when third parties should be brought into DDaT projects.|
|Financial management||Able to support effective budget management within the constraints of the project. Retains a continued awareness of the budget against actual cost incurred.||Working||Able to balance cost versus value. Able to consider the impact of user needs. Able to report on financial delivery. Able to monitor cost and budget and escalate issues.|
|Lifecycle perspective||Understands the different phases of product delivery and is able to contribute to, plan or run these. Able to maintain a product or process through the delivery phases, through to live and into retirement. Able to lead a team through the different phases of the delivery lifecycle. Can maintain and iterate a product over time to continuously meet user needs. Understands and is aware of incident management and service support so that products are built effectively.||Working||Recognises when to move from one stage of a product lifecycle to another. Ensures the team is working towards the appropriate service standards for the relevant phase. Able to manage the delivery products or services at different phases.|
3. Civil Service Success Profiles Framework
The Civil Service uses The Success Profiles Framework to assess candidates during recruitment.
It is a flexible framework, used to assess a range of experiences, abilities, strengths, behaviours and technical/professional skills required for different roles.
Find out more about Success Profiles.
4. Other roles in delivery management
There are 3 other role levels in delivery management: