Introduction to ClientMAP

The ICE ClientMAP is a self-assessment questionnaire developed to help users challenge their own thinking and guide activities within the project to maximise their effectiveness.

Whilst it is based entirely around best practice guidance found in the ICE Guide, tools of this type do not replace the personal experience necessary to deliver major projects and nor are they a substitute for seeking sound advice from professionals.

Nevertheless, a Client-MAP assessment will compliment these activities by providing a consistent and structured appraisal of capabilities, and these can be monitored over time and between projects contributing to increased Client effectiveness and ultimately to more certainty about project success.

Ultimately self-assessments are simply a means to help structure your thinking by organising data and information. They do not seek to replace your own expert judgement. Questions should be answered with candour and based on a rational review of the situation. After all, there is only oneself to mislead!..

Users will be aware that self-assessments tend to introduce a degree of optimism and bias. To overcome this tendency users should prepare themselves and plan time to give the assessment due care and attention, as follows:

  • Plan the assessment by providing yourself with dedicated time to work through the questions. The assessment can be completed on your own, in small groups and even in workshops to involve a wider range of views and build consensus.
  • Read through the Client best-practice Guide to familiarise yourself with the context of the individual questions in the assessment.
  • Consider one question at a time and think about specific situations within the project that the question relates to. Consider evidence available to you and if necessary go and collect more information to clarify the situation.
  • You may need to assess the potential of future capabilities because you are at the start of a project or are answering questions that relate to future activities recuring over the life of the project. In these cases clearly you must make a judgement on how likely it is that the capability will be effectively developed. To do this you should consider available evidence in terms of:
    • Relevant past performance.
    • The presence of enablers such as preparitory activities and plans.
    • The strength of future intentions such as commitments.
  • Having reviewed all the information reasonably available to you, form a view on the extent to which the capability in question is present or planned to be present in the project. Follow the scoring guidelines below as strictly as possible. Be opinionated and do not default to 'average' scores. Remember the old adage: rubbish in, rubbish out.
  • If the assessment has been completed on an individual basis, it may be useful to share the results with others before pressing the 'FINISHED' key to help improve its accuracy.

Consider that independent assessments from competent providers who know the Guide may be an option to use from time to time to provide a balanced, third party view and address the risk of internal bias.

It is assumed that the user has followed the guidance set out above in preparing for the assessment. This means that they understand the context of the question and have all the information reasonably available to them as evidence to answer the question.

Scoring involves assessing the extent to which the evidence indicates that the capability expressed in the question is materially present and effective in the project.

For each question, consider the Scoring Guidance shown below. Be fair but critical. If evidence is missing do not give the subject the benefit of the doubt as this does not assist to improve the situation, merely to mask the reality and potentially miss an opportunity.

Systematically review each of the 'aspects to consider' as set out in the question. Include additional aspects that you consider relevant. Notionally tick the aspects that are present and effective to build up your assessment.

Note that the '% effectiveness of the capability' is shown below to guide your thinking during scoring; it is not a score that appears in the final assessment report.

Scoring Guidance

Scoring categories % effectiveness of the capability Scoring guidance: Rate the extent to which the client capabilities in question are present in the project. Consider specific examples and review tangible evidence.
Effectively absent 0% Little evidence that the capability is present or effective.
To a limited extent 25% Evidence that the capability is effective to about one quarter of the potential when considering all relevant areas and activities.
To a moderate extent 50% Evidence that the capability is effective to about one half of the potential when considering all relevant areas and activities.
To a considerable extent 75% Evidence that the capability is effective to about three quarters of the potential when considering all relevant areas and activities.
Fully 100% Evidence that the capability is effective to its full potential when considering all relevant areas and activities. Effectively best-practice.