Guide To Set Up a Project Management Office (PMO)

Checklist and Step By Step Approach to Set Up a Project Management Office


In the current challenging business environment and slowed economic revival, companies are moving toward business models and in turn delivery models that are predictable, consistent. Businesses are looking for project delivery model that will help them to cut down on cost rather deliver more value within a allocated budget. This is not expected for one or two projects but most projects running across organization. How would organizations be able to achieve this or implement such consistent and predictable project delivery mechanism? Though it is not any innovative solution as such, but companies have identified the responsibility of achieving such project delivery model with project management office (PMO) staff.

There are different types of PMO and organization culture differs from one to another, the change can be significant and would warrant lot of synergies and supports from organization itself. Let’s look at the steps by step guide to set up a project management office (PMO).

Should My Organization Implement PMO?

Guide to Set Up a Project Management Office (PMO)
Guide to Set Up a Project Management Office (PMO)

In the previous posts we looked at the reasons your organization can consider whether to implement project management office (PMO). In essence what PMO strives to do, is to have checks and balances for doing project management right. Not checking projects for right progress or not taking efficiency measures will give you a false impression that projects may be going fine, when in reality, they are not. And that’s what PMO will help your organization to improve success ration, bring in efficiency in the way projects are delivered and also translate into more number of projects delivered on time, lowered cost of managing projects, etc.

Difficulty in Executing Many Projects- Guide to Set up Project Management Office (PMO)
Difficulty in Executing Many Projects- Guide to Set up Project Management Office (PMO)

Let’s say you don’t have a formal PMO set up in your organization. In your organization if you have couple of projects at any point in time, you can plan and execute those, by having a skilled & experienced project manager. If you have handful of projects, and again few skilled & experienced project managers along with management support by referring to standard documents or processes, may be able to deliver projects successfully. However as the number of projects starts growing, as the complexity involved in managing projects increases, it becomes difficult for individual an organization to see if individual project managers are able to comply the organization standards for projects or if there is a consistency in project delivery or if project resources can be moved seamlessly. In short, your organization is most likely to fail from real benefits of implementing a common, consistent project management methodology.

In such cases, many business tries to address above problem by implementing a centralized project management office (PMO) or centralized project management organization. This PMO has the responsibility and ownership of establishing and implementing a common & consistent project management methodology/approach across organization. Let’s look at what does it involve in setting up a project management office (PMO).

Firstly let me list down the artifacts or documents your organization will need before implementing PMO.

Artifacts for PMO Implementation

  • Mission Statement, Objectives and Benefits
  • Outline Type of PMO That Suits Your Organization Short Term & Long Term Plan
  • Roles and Responsibilities of PMO personnel and Associated Resources
  • PMO Framework: Policies, Procedures, Standards, tools and Best Practices
  • PMO Organogram/ Organization Structure
  • PMO Implementation Plan
  • PMO KPIs and Evaluation Methodology for Success

Let’s look at the steps involved in setting up a project management office (PMO).

Steps In Setting Up a Project Management Office (PMO)?

  • Assess The Need of Having PMO For Your Organization
  • Assess The Maturity Level of Your Organization In Terms of Current State of PMO
  • Set a Target for Desired State or maturity level of PMO
  • Define a Roadmap and Implementation Plan of PMO
  • Implement/Execute PMO Plan
  • Review and Improve PMO Benefits, Practices Continuously

We will get into the details of step by step guide to set up a project management office (PMO) in next post.

Additional readings about project management, leadership

Your life can be become easier with the right project management system. ZilicusPM is the right PM tool for you and your team. Get started now.

About Zilicus

Zilicus offers All-In-One project management software ZilicusPM that provides complete project management control for project and portfolio managers; at the same time makes it really simple for project team members to stay on top of things. If you have been managing projects with conventional spreadsheet/ MS Excel templates or emails, it is the right time to start using online project portfolio management software. ZilicusPM is great platform for better project collaboration. Take a screenshot tour of project management software tour of ZilicusPM and Sign up for 30-days free trial of project management software ZilicusPM

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