Redesigning the PMO

Many organizations are struggling to get the max out of their Project Management Office (PMO). Gartner presented their seven Best Practices for an Effective PMO (see here for abstract). They address the issues we see with the ‘traditional’ PMO which is so often too administrative, too bureaucratic and focused mainly on reporting status. The PMO can be so much more effective. But it has to adjust to support digital change which is rolled out across enterprises faster than ever, with continuously changing delivery models due to cloud services and an approach which demands more flexibility (agile, Bimodal IT). It is interesting that this PMO ‘function’ which is all about managing change, is struggling to change itself in. Note that Gartner is not challenging the concept and the need for a PMO, it’s challenging its role and its objective. At Baseline7 we were excited to see that Gartner’s best practices for changing the PMO, line up with with our guiding principles of change:

 

Invest

Invest in the right people with the right skills but even more importantly the right collaborative character (#1 on Gartner’s list). Then invest in defining how to align with the strategic enterprise objectives vs being an administrative function (#4 on Gartner’s list0

Focus

Identify High-Impact, High-Visibility initiatives that really make a difference to show what a PMO can really do (#2 in Gartner’s list) and highlight the achievements (#6 on Gartner’s list).

Engage

Work with stakeholders to understand what it takes to facilitate Bimodal IT and support the fast growing digital business initiatives (#7 on Gartner’s list).

Measure

Report on what the stakeholders really care about (#3 on Gartner’s list) and in a structure which is simple and unambiguous (#5 on Gartner’s list).

 

As with many change initiatives, transitioning a PMO to get ready for a next phase of it’s maturity is not going to be without struggles. As such, Baseline7 recommends that it should be managed as a change initiative itself and make sure that all 8 steps of change will be followed. And it all starts with the eagerness and sense of urgency that has to exist within the organization to make the PMO once again effective and efficient. Eager to change? Reach out to us to see how we can help your organization be successful with change.

 

Baseline7 is a digital change agency that helps stakeholders implement their vision.