Ultimate Guide To Setting Up a PMO In Your Business

When a business is handling numerous projects at the same time, it is important to be able to balance them as needed so that they don’t fail. Successful projects are the goal of every business and organization, as failures can cause a lot of costly setbacks. On the other hand, successfully carried through projects can result in significant growth.

Setbacks in productivity can damage the success and growth of your business, which is why setting up a Project Management Office (PMO) to help handle and oversee various projects at once is a great way to avoid these issues.

What Exactly is a PMO?

A Project Management Office (PMO) is another department within an organization, similar to HR or Finance. The PMO’s responsibilities include setting the bar for how projects are managed as well as monitoring their progress to ensure everything goes smoothly. Setting up a PMO ensures that projects follow specific guidelines and that they are being implemented properly. Other responsibilities of a PMO include:

  • Project approval
  • Improve overall standard and success rate of projects
  • Provide training based on the various projects
  • Create documentation and templates relevant to projects

These responsibilities help keep the team organized and help them to focus more on what needs to be done to ensure optimal growth. PMOs typically have staff that collect data relevant to projects such as progress reports and other management variables to overview the team’s progress and continue ensuring that high-quality standards are being met. Setting up a PMO can help with many different components of a business. 

Why Having a PMO Is Crucial

Setting up a PMO can help with many different aspects. For one, they help improve the overall project success rate. They also set the standards in which the business operates, which is key for any top-level professional organization, as standards are what set any business apart from its competitors.

A PMO can define the standard for each individual department as well. They also ensure that there is compliance with the business’s strategies, goals, and values. Every good business constantly has new projects being developed to innovate new products and services, and building a project management office makes sure that things don’t get out of hand or go off track. The close level of surveillance ensures that every department is working efficiently towards success.

Different Types Of PMOs

When it comes to setting up a PMO, there are three basic types. They vary in terms of influence, control, and hands-on effort. It is important to determine which type of PMO best suits your organization’s needs and goals.

Directive PMO

The directive PMO guides and directs the project to monitor progress. They provide the necessary project management experience to see that the project is successful. This can make your projects much more professional and ensure that you continuously reach the necessary standard since each project manager was selected by the PMO. This guarantees high standards and consistency. This is most effective in larger businesses that can benefit from hands-on assistance and direct takeover. Establishing a PMO of this sort can be very beneficial for a company that needs more direct guidance.

Supportive PMO

The supportive PMO is typically available for support on any issues, such as providing needed expertise, best practices, and templates. Compared to the directive PMO, a supportive PMO is mostly there when the business needs them, rather than taking over the projects. This is efficient in an environment where projects are successfully completed in a loosely controlled environment where additional control is not required. If these variables apply, then going with a supportive PMO might be the best choice for the business.

Controlling PMO

In an organization seeking more closely-knit connections between the procedures in each project, a controlling PMO is an ideal fit. The controlling PMO might require that certain templates and forms are followed in order to provide support. They provide support in additional situations such as compliance disputes or misunderstandings that may be difficult for others to manage. 

How to Set up a PMO

Building a project management office is not a quick and easy process, as it takes time and dedication. In the long run, establishing a PMO is well worth the time and effort, and is a useful tool for any business when looking to take on multiple projects at once with high quality. The steps to establishing a PMO include:

  • Defining the goals
  • Hiring a team
  • Defining the metrics and setting the standards
  • Training the organization

First, clarifying the purpose of the PMO is important as this will help the team select the right kind of PMO. The goal will help shape the PMO and dictate what sort of standards are set, and if templates and other metrics are fully required. Hiring a designated team is also an important investment to tackle project management. The team should be composed of a director, program managers, and project operators. 

It is important to define the metrics and set the right standards so that projects can be completed promptly and with high quality. It is important to consider the project budget, size and impact. Choosing the right metrics will prevent failure and increase success chance percentages for the project. Once all these ground rules are laid out, it is important to train everyone to get them on the same page. 

WorkOtter Can Get You Started

At WorkOtter, we are passionate developers who are excited to help you with your project, resource, and management needs. We have vast experience in helping you set up your PMO so that you can begin achieving your goals at a whole new level. WorkOtter is ideal for IT, new product development, as well as engineering PMOs for organizations that are ready to reach their full potential. We do the work so you don’t have to.


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