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Does Your PMO Provide A Valuable Service?

Paul Naybour Paul Naybour

Published: 20th March 2021

An efficient, well-run project management office (PMO) should provide a valuable service to a project manager and the team, particularly on long or complex projects and large organisations, but whether they do or not is a different matter. Some PMOs are mired in bureaucracy and are often perceived as just adding to a project’s workload; yet if they are flexible with their processes and appreciate that one size does not fit all they genuinely can add value, relieve some of the workload from a busy project manager and ensure projects are more successful.

The question is how can they do so?

One of the key factors in successful PMOs is that they deliver the benefits that matter most: satisfied customers and cost-reduction – mainly by streamlining processes – but all PMOs need to make sure that such benefits are actually delivered and that they are properly communicated to project teams and other departments as having done so. Otherwise it is all too easy for a PMO to become a cost rather than reducing costs or, at least, to be viewed that way.
The PMO is one of the few departments in a large organisation that will have a clear overview of which projects are being run well and which are not; which projects are efficient and which are not, which are staying within budget or on-schedule. They should, therefore, be able to make project processes more efficient.

So there is a contradiction here:

Good PMOs add value and contribute to the success of projects.

Bad PMOs are (or are perceived to be) a process and cost burden, and organisations with an ineffective PMO have a lower success rate for their projects.

So the inference is clear: get a good PMO and your projects will be more successful – provided, of course, that you follow sound project management practises. That doesn’t sound too hard but the reality indicates something different.
And just how can an organisation be sure whether their PMO is “good” or “bad”, adds value or adds to costs?

Much of the responsibility lies with the PMO itself making sure they can show what value they add because, in some organisations at least, they have struggled with a poor reputation as rigidly process-focused, inflexible and bureaucratic.

Just as defining success criteria for projects helps them to be more successful so defining how and where a PMO adds value, and agreeing on those metrics with other departments, will ensure that it does indeed add value.

Possible PMO Metrics for Adding Value

By establishing agreed metrics the PMO will be able to demonstrate their real value whilst, at the same time, improving project delivery. Examples of some possible success metrics include:

1. Improve on the estimated versus actual delivery times of projects
2. Improve on the estimated versus actual costs of projects
3. Increase the percentage of successful projects
4. Review completed projects for customer satisfaction levels
5. Review completed projects to ensure expected benefits were delivered
Clearly to measure improvements you would need to establish a baseline, which could be current or historical data and you would also need a mechanism to collect reliable data on future projects.

  1. Hi Parallel Project Training team! I recently read your blog post about the valuable services that a PMO can provide, and I found it to be very informative. As someone who is interested in project management, I appreciate the insights you shared about the importance of a PMO in an organization.

    Your post highlighted the various services that a PMO can offer, such as project governance, portfolio management, and resource management. I appreciated how you explained the benefits of each service and how they contribute to the success of a project.

    I particularly liked how you emphasized the importance of having a standardized project management process and how a PMO can help achieve this. Your post also provided valuable information on how a PMO can improve communication and collaboration among project stakeholders, which is critical for the success of any project.

    Overall, I want to commend you on a great blog post that provides valuable insights into the world of project management and PMO services. Your explanations are clear and concise, making it easy for readers to understand the benefits of a PMO in an organization. I’m sure that many readers will find your post to be a valuable resource. Thank you for sharing your expertise!

  2. I recently read your article about the value that a PMO (Project Management Office) can provide to an organization, and I found it very insightful. Your explanation of how a PMO can help standardize project management practices and improve project delivery efficiency was particularly compelling.

    One of the things I appreciated most about your article was the emphasis you placed on the role of a PMO in providing guidance and support to project managers. As you mentioned, project managers are often juggling multiple projects with competing priorities, and having a PMO that can provide guidance, tools, and resources can be incredibly valuable in helping them succeed.

    I also appreciated your point about the importance of customizing the services provided by a PMO to the unique needs and culture of the organization. Every organization is different, and a one-size-fits-all approach is unlikely to be effective. Instead, tailoring PMO services to the specific needs of an organization can help ensure that they are well-received and have maximum impact.

    Overall, your article provided an excellent overview of the value that a PMO can provide and the key elements to consider when establishing one. Thank you for sharing your insights on this important topic!

    • MS says:

      Glad you found the article interesting and, yes, absolutely necessary to tailor PMO services to the specific requirements of an organisation if it is to be a useful and successful team.

  3. Abdullapmp says:

    Hey there! I just finished reading your article on how PMOs (Project Management Offices) can provide a valuable service, and I have to say, it was a fantastic read! As someone who has worked in project management, I completely agree with your insights and observations. The role of a PMO is often underestimated, but you did an excellent job of highlighting its importance in ensuring project success.

    I particularly liked how you emphasized the PMO’s ability to streamline processes and establish consistent standards across projects. This is crucial in maintaining efficiency and avoiding unnecessary duplication of efforts. Your examples of establishing project templates, conducting regular project reviews, and providing training and mentoring support truly showcase the value that a well-structured PMO can bring to an organization.

    Furthermore, your mention of the PMO’s role in knowledge management resonated with me. In today’s fast-paced business environment, organizations often struggle with retaining and disseminating project knowledge. By actively capturing and sharing lessons learned, best practices, and project documentation, PMOs play a vital role in ensuring that valuable knowledge is not lost but rather utilized to enhance future projects.

    Overall, your article not only highlights the benefits of having a PMO but also serves as a great reminder for organizations to invest in building a robust PMO function. Thank you for sharing your insights and expertise. I look forward to reading more of your articles in the future! Keep up the excellent work, and best wishes on your PMO endeavors.

  4. Abdullapmp says:

    Hello there! 👋 I just finished reading your article on how PMOs (Project Management Offices) provide a valuable service, and I couldn’t resist leaving a comment. Your insights into the significance of PMOs and the unique value they bring to organizations are truly eye-opening.

    Your exploration of the roles and functions of PMOs in delivering consistent project management practices was spot on. The way you emphasized how PMOs can enhance project performance, communication, and alignment with strategic goals showcased their potential as crucial contributors to an organization’s success.

    I appreciated your real-world examples and case studies that illustrated the positive impact of PMOs. These stories not only validated your points but also provided tangible evidence of how PMOs can transform project outcomes and boost overall efficiency.

    The breakdown of the various services that PMOs provide, from standardizing processes to offering coaching and mentoring, was a standout point for me. Your article showcased how PMOs are not just administrative entities, but rather dynamic hubs that drive project excellence.

    Your writing style is engaging and your insights are well-structured and informative. Your article has highlighted the often-underestimated value of PMOs and left me with a newfound appreciation for their role in project management. Looking forward to more enlightening content from you in the future. Keep up the fantastic work! 🌈

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