Do we really need a PMO!?

Is your company trying to keep up or catch up in the world where major business transformation is the norm to maintain a competitive advantage?  Does the path to success seem unclear and leave you unsure where to look for clear direction?  You are definitely not alone.  Many companies are running so fast to get the critical projects started, they don’t take the time to create a PMO or forget a PMO is a key ingredient to successful transformation.

Transformation is difficult and is not accomplished by implementing a single project.  There are always multiple projects with varied stakeholders who believe their specific project is the most important.  The projects are normally shared and delivered by IT and business teams and often have cross-project responsibilities.  All of these conflicting priorities lead to team confusion, timeline delays and project cost overruns.

Let’s face it, not all Executive Leaders who drive strategic corporate direction have led a project to a successful delivery.  Therefore, they may not appreciate the need to establish a strong foundation where all transformation projects can flourish and succeed.  You may need to help them understand the value of building out your PMO by implementing the following:

  1. Aligning a cross-functional leadership team representing IT and Business functions
  2. Establishing the Program Mission & Charter that aligns with Executive Leadership vision and spells out program success criteria
  3. Creating a strong understanding of accountability and business ownership across the program and avoiding too heavy reliance on 3rd party vendors
  4. Defining clear roles and responsibilities for every team member and setting expectations for how the teams work together successfully by staying in their own lanes
  5. Establishing a crystal-clear program/project communication plan that provides guidelines for typical status communications and a means to “escalate” issues when appropriate
  6. Providing standard project management tools and processes for use across the program
  7. Implementing critical change and risk/issue management process
  8. Outlining expectations for monitoring, measuring, reporting status against the plan

Trying to drive a transformation program without a PMO is like building a house without a General Contractor.  How would the sub-contractors know when to schedule their work?  Who would ensure the work performed meets requirements, was high-quality and delivered to code?  How would you manage issues and avoid finger-pointing when something goes wrong, and it will?  Would it be possible to stay in budget, have the house delivered on-time all while meeting the home owner’s expectations?

Start your project strong and give your team the foundation and structure for the absolute best chance to succeed by building out a PMO staffed with resources experienced in delivering complex programs. If you believe your company could benefit from establishing a PMO and would like to learn more, please contact us at info@notchaboveconsulting.com.  We will be able to help you layout the ground work for a successful project structure.

Furthermore, if your project and PMO is already underway and struggling, you may benefit from a Program Delivery Assessment.  The Assessment is performed over a 4-8 week period with an experienced Program Manager working closely with you and leveraging our proven program assessment framework.

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