What is Project Management Office?
PMO (Project Management Office) is a group of people who own the project management process of an organization as defined by PMP.
- They have the right to change anything in the project management process.
- They train the project managers and handhold to them the process of implementation.
- They are the people who ensure that project managers are following the process, for which they perform audit from time to time.
- They are supposed to report directly to the executive board members of an organization and tell them how well the projects are being executed.
Officially, a PMO head is the person, to whom both program and project managers finally report. He is not the one who creates some presentations, goes to different project managers, gets their project plans and creates a PPT out of it, or an excel presentation or report out of it. PMOs are not the ones, who are responsible for making sure that the vendors’ invoices are being paid and their organization’s invoices are being sent to the customers in time; nor are they the people who look into whether the tickets are done for the resources in the project that they are doing. Those are not the tasks of Project Management Office. Those are project admin station activities that have nothing to do with PMO as per PMI.
Definition of PMO
It is an organizational body or entity, assigned with various responsibilities related to the centralized and coordinated management of those projects that are in its domain.
The projects supported or managed may not be related, other than being managed together. Project Management Office can exist in all the three levels. There can be a Project Management Office that takes care of the Project Management part of it; there can be a Program Management Office, which will do the same thing, but at a higher level, i.e., at the program level; and there can also be Portfolio Management Office, which manages portfolios or is the owner of the Portfolio Management process at a higher level. Now, it can be a single organization playing all the three roles.
The primary function of PMO is to support the project managers in a variety of ways, which may include, but is not limited to:
- Managing shared resources across the projects administered
- Identifying and developing project management methodology, best practices and standards
- Coaching, mentoring, training, and oversight
- Monitoring compliance with PM standards, policies, procedures and templates
- Developing and managing project policies, procedures, templates and other shared documentation
- Coordinating communication across projects