What Should the Role of PMO Be?

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The role of the Project Management Office (PMO) varies considerably from a single business to the next. A few PMO’s merely give a pool of IT project managers to manage projects. At another end of the spectrum, PMOs may be the part of the business with supreme duty to outline, authorize and check projects. The duty to define and enforce project management processes can also be common to PMO’s.

PMO Purpose

In order to have a variety of thoughts and observations, the concern “What is a PMO?” was submitted to a open public web site which in turn generated lots of replies. This section summarizes these reactions.

Obtain the work in (Proposals), offer Project Managers to guide through finalization.
Act as an interface in between Program/Project Boards along with the Project delivery teams.
Display projects for business value
Supply the very first degree of escalation regarding project groups and customers
Ensure the management strategy suits the project variety
Establish and impose processes that influence industry guidelines such as PMBOK and Prince2
Oversee supply to make sure conformity with guidelines and operations, incident administration, modify management, tactical evaluations, operation reviews, punctually distribution of the projects in quantifiable manner.

Drive project delivery performance and exposure through the introduction of project management standards
Tasks and IT providers have a life-cycle from Inception through Implementation and Advantages Realization. The PMO is in an ideal position to organize across the life-cycle
PMO must be organized around perfecting people
Assess the technology, difficulty, originality and pace necessary for the project
One of many respondents cited Crawford, J.K., et al. (2008). Seven Steps to Strategy Execution which in turn recognizes the following PMO responsibilities:

Integrate lessons learned straight into Techniques, Standards and Methodologies
Produce and deploy professional task supervisors to manage projects
Make progress role regarding instruction and growth of job managers and team members in the project management processes, culture, and positions
Supply Project Assistance to assist with estimating, budgeting, preparing, scheduling, status reporting and issue monitoring.
Create and maintain project-related Software Tools by identifying, integrating, maintaining, and overseeing performance of the tools.
Mentoring and Coaching departments who wish to handle projects on their own.
Presume Portfolio Management responsibility to act as a clearinghouse for task information and also to make sure decision makers have the best information.


The subsequent problems had been recognized during the conversation:

“The cobbler’s children have no shoes”. IT spends nearly all of their time constructing administration options for the business. They neglect to carry out procedures and equipment for effectively handling IT. PMO’s need to mix information from various disconnected resources devote extended hours attempting to overcome and assess improvement.

A task starts with Inception in which potential projects/ideas tend to be recognized, prioritized, and authorized. Most PMO’s are part of the IT business and IT’s focus could be the distribution of tasks. As an effect the PMO doesn’t sign on right up until a formal task continues to be authorized. PMO involvement usually ends when the project is done and no one is accountable for verifying the specified advantages were realized.


An analysis of the reactions yielded the subsequent findings:

There exists a wide variety of opinions concerning the role of a PMO along with a lack of consensus. Most of the responses referred to an advisory, instruction, staffing, or even a supporting role with the PMO together with restricted authority.

The suggestions were mostly IT-centric with minimal discussion of economic issues and only one comment concerning the role of your PMO with respect to Portfolio Management.

Lots of the suggestions suggested a typical theme which is the detection and minimization of risks but it was never specifically stated.

There was no conversation concerning the role from the company sponsors and stakeholders along with the PMO’s participation in identifying and controlling these roles.

There seemed to be no discussion from the role of a PMO with regards to Application Support.


Depending on this analysis, seems like the advantages to the business could be significantly elevated by adding the following duties in to the role of a PMO:

Provide control and direction throughout all periods of a project from Inception to Benefits Realization. This includes the detection and verification of the benefit proposition.

Assume the duties for Portfolio Management to identify, organize, and focus on projects. This also needs to include a direct function in aligning specifications and managing issues across business limitations.

Take a lead role in task danger checks, risk mitigation, and continuing project efficiency monitoring. Job teams may become therefore focused on fixing focused job issues they lose sight of the big image and the general objectives. This type of oversight might help a PMO determine problems early on and assist in preventing problems.

Include support oversight within the scope of the PMO since it is specifically impacted by projects

Implement monitoring and evaluation capabilities to aid these recommendations.