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The Toronto 2015 Pan and Parapan American Games Experience

3. The Project Team

From the Project’s inception through to its closure, close to 450 people made contributions to ECCC’s project to ensure the success of the delivery of services to the TO2015 client. A small expert team representing monitoring, prediction and services, science, and information technology was initially formed to craft, negotiate and document ECCC’s contributions to the Games in the Treasury Board Submission. Once funding was received in 2012, the Steering Committee, Project Board and three different Working Groups (Monitoring, Prediction and Services, Science) were formed. A Project Lead was identified within ECCC, and a Project Office Manager and Project Assurer chosen to lead and coordinate the work prior to, during and after the Games. An Information Management/Information Technology Working Group was created in 2013. Lastly, as the Project moved towards implementation and final preparations for the Games, the Implementation Team was assembled in 2014.

3.1 Steering Committee

A Steering Committee was formed in 2012 to provide oversight management of the Project at an executive level. Although the membership of this Committee changed over the years, the overall executive leadership of the Project remained with one Director General and one Director for the sake of consistency and continuity. Some members retired or moved to other functions within the Department, and because of the functional reporting of the Working Groups, the selection of the Steering Committee members had to include executive members of the core services and operations of the organization in order to mobilize staff to work on the project.

Steering Committee members realized, understood and appreciated the high profile of the project relating to the safety and security requirements of the Games and the interactions necessary with other federal colleagues. Furthermore, they planned for this multi-disciplinary team to continue working on their component parts across as many as five fiscal years.

3.2 Project Board

In early 2013, ECCC adopted a more rigorous standard as the number of players and tasks grew. The project management “industry” subscribes to many methodologies, and ECCC had selected the PRINCE2® methodology to be the internal industry-standard used. The Project Office for the Games adopted a “PRINCE2®-lite” approach in order to help formalize and run a much more structured project. The team was able to isolate the management aspects of project work from the specialist contributions, such as design and construction. The specialist aspects of the Project were easily integrated with this method to provide an overall framework for the Project. The technique is generic and based on proven principles, so that organizations that adopt the method substantially improve their organizational capability and maturity across various areas such as business change, construction, IT, and research and product development.

The Project Board was formed to be accountable to corporate or program management for the success of the project and had the authority to direct the project as documented in the project mandate. The Project Board was also responsible for the communications between the project management team and stakeholders external to that team.

3.4 Project Working Groups

The Project Office began by developing a plan based on the approved Treasury Board submission and identifying a number of functional leads for working group teams that had to be assembled in order to accomplish the Project’s mission. The Working Groups became supporting pillars to the Project overall and used human resources with specific skills from many parts of the organization. The Project Lead and Project Office team were members of all of the Working Groups, ensuring the coordination and integration of work between the different groups.

Monitoring Working Group

The purpose of the Monitoring Working Group, formed in 2012, was to make decisions with regard to network design, data collection, data acquisition, data storage and data transmission related to the atmospheric monitoring effort in support of the Games. This included the data that was collected for real-time forecast operations, scientific studies and validation of research initiatives. The Monitoring Working Group had the authority to approve the design of the Games monitoring effort within the scope defined by the Games business plan, which flowed from the Treasury Board approval.

Prediction and Services Working Group

The purpose of the Prediction and Services Working Group, formed in 2012, was to coordinate and manage the services and products (weather and environmental alerts and forecasts) that were provided by ECCC in support of the Games. This included defining the users/clients, both internal and external, and working with them to ensure that their requirements were met. There were many types of potential bulletins, clients and perspectives involved with this process. It was very important that all systems and personnel be in place well ahead of time for proper testing before the Games began. The group made recommendations regarding the best projects to pursue, taking into account the resources available and the clients’ needs.

Science Working Group

The purpose of the Science Working Group, formed in 2012, was to provide leadership for all of the scientific and showcase projects that scientists contributed in their support to the Games. The group managed the user requirements from a science perspective and determined what could be showcased during the Games. The science team noted opportunities and leveraged resources to develop high-resolution forecast models, extend the Mesonet for high-resolution and current numerical weather prediction model validation, and produce new and emerging nowcasting and forecast dissemination tools.

Information Management/Information Technology Working Group

The purpose of the Information Management and Information Technology (IM/IT) Working Group, formed in 2014, was to record, track and oversee the delivery of IM/IT servicesin support of the Games. Over the course of the planning and implementation period, it recorded and tracked requests for any Games-related IM/IT services, planned tasks and performed oversight. This Working Group also coordinated communications between all Working Groups to maintain cohesion with the work being done for the end-to-end functionality of systems from monitoring through to dissemination.

Implementation Team

As the Project moved from initial planning stages to implementation, an Implementation Team was formed in 2014 with representation from Ontario monitoring, prediction, services, IT and science management. These managers had roles in each of the larger Working Groups to help plan tasks that their resources would execute. This committee was the implementation arm of the overarching plans created by the Working Groups to produce the products and services required by the client.

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