MSP Managing Successful Programmes

5-day MSP Foundation and Practitioner Course Outline Public schedule available for individuals Available as an in-house course for organisations Includes examinations during the course Available as a residential course Self-study e-Learning option available Course Dates

MSP® Foundation and Practitioner Course


Officially launched in 1999, “Managing Successful Programmes” (MSP®) is a guide that provides and maintains a strategic view over the set of projects, aligning and co-ordinating them within a programme of business change in support of specific business strategies.

Who is the course designed for?

Any organisation or individual seeing the need for a controlled approach to managing its programmes. The event is suitable for programme managers, experienced project managers, programme support team members and senior managers from any discipline.

The OGC Managing Successful Programmes method is flexible and adaptable for any type and size of programme where a business "vision" is the required outcome.

What are the course objectives?

The key objectives of this course are:

  • Provide Delegates with an understanding of the benefits and principles underlying a structured approach to programme management.
  • Apply the principles of MSP® to programmes within a work environment.
  • Operate effectively with colleagues and managers within a structured programme and project management environment.
  • Enable delegates to understand the MSP® framework to be prepared to sit the APM Group/OGC MSP™ Foundation & Practitioner examinations.

What is the course approach?

The course is a mixture of input and practical sessions, delivered by an APM Group approved trainer with practical experience of programme management.

The pre-course material includes SPOCE's highly acclaimed event preparation CD, accompanied with a pre-course reading guide. Delegates should spend approximately 10 hours studying this pre-course material in order to be well prepared for the course.

Due to the intense nature of this course, delegates should plan to commit approximately 1 hour each evening during the course for study and review.


What examinations are taken on the course?

Foundation: 1-hour, closed book exam consisting of 75 multiple-choice questions.

Practitioner: 2 hour, 30 minute, open book (MSP® manual only) consisting of 8 scenario based objective test questions

What does the course cover?

This four-day course covers the MSP Foundation syllabus, including the following topics:

MSP® Introduction and Overview - What is a programme? What is programme management? Terminology? Structure of MSP®

MSP® Framework and Concepts - Principles, governance themes, transformational flow, management strategies and plans.

Vision - What is a ‘vision’? What makes a good Vision Statement?Identifying a Programme; Programme Mandate. Linking to Policy and Strategy. Preparing a Programme Brief. Planning to Define the Programme.

Blueprint Design and Delivery - What is a Blueprint, and what does it contain? Developing a Blueprint from the Vision Statement.

Defining a Programme - Creating a Programme Definition Document (including the Project Dossier, the Programme Plan and the Programme Business Case).

Planning and Control - What is a Programme Plan and how is it developed? The Project Dossier. Resourcing and scheduling.

Benefits Realisation Management - The key driver for the programme.  How benefits realisation links to achieving strategic objectives. Outcome relationship models and Benefit Maps. Planning for benefits realisation.

Organisation and the Programme Office - Organisation and leadership. Organisational structure, the key roles and their responsibilities; What is a Programme Office and what service does it provide.

The Business Case - Developing, managing and reviewing the programme’s Business Case.

Leadership and Stakeholder Engagement - Leadership as opposed to management. How ‘leaders’ actively engage stakeholders. Analysing and engaging with stakeholders. Stakeholder maps and matrices.

Managing the Tranches - Implementing governance arrangements. Establishing tranches. Managing risks and issues.

Delivering the Capability and Realising the Benefits - Co-ordinating and managing projects on the Project Dossier. Starting and closing projects. Maintaining alignment with the programme; Ensuring that project outputs are fit for purpose and can be integrated into operations, so that benefits can be realised. Pre-transition, transition and post-transition activities.

Quality Management - Critical Success Factors.  The scope of programme quality management. Quality processes. Configuration Management. Quality Management Strategy and Plan. Information Management Strategy and Plan.

Risk Management and Issue Resolution - Principles, approach and strategy for managing risks and resolving issues; Managing and controlling changes in programmes.

Closing a Programme - Formal confirmation of completion. Finalising programme information.   Confirming closure.

Practical Work - A specially written scenario runs throughout the course from start to finish. A comprehensive set of tasks help provide a practical application. There are also sample exam Foundation and Practitioner papers for delegates to practice with.

What course materials are included?

Event Preparation CD

SPOCE's highly acclaimed event preparation CD is available to everyone attending this event. Delegates should spend approximately 10 hours studying this pre-course material in order to be well prepared for the course.

MSP ® Manual

The official MSP® Guidance, sent with the pre-course materials.

Course Handouts

  • MSP Pre-Course Reading Guide - This provides clear direction to delegates on what to read and do prior to attending the course. This is sent with your pre-course materials.
  • MSP Foundation Handout - Provided during the course, this handout includes the tasks used in the course, a copy of the slides used by the trainer, and the APMG sample foundation exam paper.
  • MSP Examinations Assistant - Provided during the course, this handout includes the APMG sample Practitioner exam paper.

Foundation Exam

The 1-hour APMG Foundation Exam is held on day three at 4pm. Results will be available within 30 minutes of the end of the exam.

Practitioner Exam

The 2 hour, 30 minute APMG Practitioner Exam is held on the final day at 9am. Exam papers are marked by APMG and results are usually available within 3-4 weeks.

Event Preparation CD

MSP Materials



All courses include refreshments, Complementary lunch provided on courses outside London. Onsite accommodation is available at additional cost (except London) on a dinner, bed and breakfast basis. Optional accommodation can be added when making a booking.

Delegate Feedback

The following is a list of feedback comments from customers attending recent SPOCE courses.


"Julia was fantastic and went over configuration management again and again until I finally got it!! So thank you ever so much. This will really help me in my daily working life" Rachel Cough

"Excellent Trainer/Course/Hotel Facilities - Great Knowledge and presentation skills of the trainer - very Enjoyable Course" Leanne Preuss

"Richard is a fantastic trainer and I would recommend him to anyone. Thanks!" Res Sembi

"Trainer was faultless, enthusiastic, knowledgeable, thorough etc. I would recommend collagues to attend the course with this trainer in particular" Andrew Willis

"Enjoyed the way the course was delivered with respect to interaction of delegates" Jason Bennett

"Mike was excellent. I think i'd have been worn out by about 10am on Monday if I were him" Sally Ragret

"Richard made a complex subject clear and got us up to speed in 3 days!" Paul Curtis

"The course surpassed my expectations. I'll totally recomend it to my colleagues" Marjuh Hernandez

"The trainer was outstanding, imformative, helpful, well prepared, able to tailor the course to particular requirements, and had a sense of humour!" Saminia Khan


Project, Programme and Risk Management Best Practice– Video Bytes | SPOCE

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