Employed indirectly by the Department for Transport via project managers Mott McDonald, Quill Power provided communications support to the Intercity Express Programme for a 12-month period, from March 2006 until February 2007. A contentious and complex project, IEP affected a wide cross section of industry stakeholders at all levels and already had a growing number of detractors at the time of QPC's appointment, with, in the absence of a structured communications plan, some media choosing to plug the gap with damaging speculation.
To manage stakeholder/media perceptions of the project, Quill Power -working within the IEP project team — produced a suite of documents, providing comprehensive guidance concerning the management of communication during the OJEU process leading up to the appointment of a contractor. This included the following:
Communications strategy — A comprehensive plan outlining all project communications moving forward, including messaging, stakeholder management and a communications matrix, matching up communications activity to key project milestones;
Communications protocols, providing clear guidance for all associated with the project regarding communications activity and corporate discipline (including media management);
Core briefing document — A central briefing document used by all associated with the project to ensure a consistent approach;
Q and A briefing document — Produced for use by the Department for Transport press office, who held direct responsibility for media liaison.
All of the above were successfully incorporated during this particular stage of the programme.