McLaren Racing accelerates PMO efficiency and drives top-line growth with Smartsheet

To drive operational efficiency, McLaren Racing revved up its project management office (PMO) with Smartsheet—leading to financial savings and an upshift in its work culture, all while keeping pace with its hyper-growth trajectory.

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to deploy the new project management solution


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McLaren Racing faced the challenge of a disparate tech stack and lack of standardised project views.

In racing, execution is critical. With Smartsheet, McLaren was able to reduce its tech stack, accelerate process efficiencies, and move operations along with speed.

Ed Green from McLaren Headshot

"With Smartsheet, we've been able to standardise our project management practices and improve outcomes. We have reduced our tech stack, which has resulted in significant cost savings and reduced our risk."

Ed Green

Head of Commercial Technology at McLaren Racing

McLaren Racing, a stalwart in the world of motor racing, has a rich and successful history. The team has won an impressive 183 Formula One races, 12 Drivers' Championships and eight Constructors' Championships to date. Based in Woking, Surrey, this British racing team is the second oldest active Formula One constructor. McLaren Racing's purpose is simple yet formidable: to perform at its peak in every race series it enters. 

However, as Ed Green, Head of Commercial Technology at McLaren Racing, explains,"To perform our best in every race, we need technology solutions that are as agile as us."

To do this, his team used a number of tools for project tracking. Unfortunately, having multiple platforms was slowing them down. Green explains, "We were spending money on different tools and software that didn’t give us a standard view of work from project to project, nor a consistent way to benchmark budgets or timelines effectively." 

Photo Courtesy of McLaren


This lack of consistency and predictability led McLaren Racing to seek out a more efficient project management solution. As Scott Horan, Senior Manager, Project Management Office (PMO) at McLaren Racing, puts it, "With our organisation in hyper growth mode, we required technology to facilitate the expansion of our projects and programs in a consistent manner."

The game changer for PMO

Turning to Smartsheet, McLaren Racing kickstarted a pivotal shift towards operational efficiency. The Smartsheet Professional Services team conducted an extensive workshop to help the McLaren PMO team fully unlock Smartsheet’s potential. Horan recalls, "Smartsheet Professional Services team helped us deploy our new project management solution in just 58 days, combining and condensing all our different tools into one platform." 

The versatility of the solution became evident as it began running various applications. McLaren uses Smartsheet Control Center to run their Salesforce deployment. Smartsheet WorkApps offers a unified view into project performance across different tasks and functions, highlighting milestones and providing meaningful look-aheads. Calendar App gives an understanding of concurrent projects, enabling McLaren's management to allocate time and resources more effectively.

Photo Courtesy of McLaren

Success on the fast lane

"With Smartsheet, we've been able to standardise our project management practices and improve project outcomes," Green says. "We have reduced our tech stack, which reduces our risk because there are less chances of an app, software, or integration breaking." 

This streamlined approach enabled McLaren to grow its PMO team in number and capabilities. “We hired a PMO leader and grew our PMO team from one resource to a seven-person team,” Green shares. "We have also accelerated introducing efficiencies into the project management practices.”  

Horan likewise attests to Smartsheet’s benefits. “Now, our PMO is driving a culture of continuous improvement and helping us achieve our strategic goals,” he adds. Smartsheet has enabled the team to manage multiple projects at scale and enhance productivity across the entire organisation. Horan sums up,

"These changes have given us the confidence that we can grow our PMO team and project portfolio at scale in a standardised way."

Photo Courtesy of McLaren

A bright future with Smartsheet

McLaren’s PMO team, previously burdened with disparate tools and inconsistent project views, has seen a profound shift towards structure and clarity. In less than two months after the Smartsheet adoption, McLaren Racing could already see the ripple effects of the new streamlined PMO approach.

The impact has been empowering. The Smartsheet suite has equipped project managers with the tools they needed to manage accelerating growth. This not only streamlined processes but also led to significant financial benefits. According to Green, "Aside from the savings with our reduced tech stack, the process efficiencies we got from adopting Smartsheet resulted in top-line growth." In light of these quantitative results, McLaren Racing are sure they made the right choice with Smartsheet.

Looking ahead, McLaren envisions a future where its PMO team continues to scale and improve their practices. As the chequered flag waves on this phase of McLaren's journey, it's clear that Smartsheet has set the team on a trajectory towards efficiency and growth.

Photo Courtesy of McLaren