We talk a lot about setting up a PMO and running the PMO. Have we ever realized that the expectation of a Project Office is vary from organization to organization?
Some Organization try to depend on PMO for all the responsibilities of Project Management while some other organizations expect PMO to operate as a reporting center.
When you are not clear with the expectations of PMO of your organization, what happens is that after some time, you will face lots of problems and its very frustrating. Before you star the project office, understand the organization culture, management and find out why your Organization needs a Project Office.
Is it only because other companies have project offices and you don’t have it? or do you have clear expectations out of a Project office?
If you need the management buy-in to initiate a PMO , 1st what you should do is , you got to study the day to day project issues of your organization., You got to analyze the Project failures. How many projects had cost overruns and Schedule overruns? How many p[projects were neglected due to lack of management interests? Analyze the capabilities of your Project Managers. Do you have qualified PMs? or one techie in the team mange your projects ?
Once you gather all these information, Build a case, present it to the management. And explain what’s the PMO concept is and how you could overcome the current problems and improve PM activities through PMO and how that affects the “Bottom line” of your organization. Talking about numbers( Even I hate it ..:-)) is very important as you need a so called “Sponsor” for your PMO
List down all the PMO expectations and align them with your organization goals. Create your Mission Statement and the objectives list., Define roles of your PMO and define responsibilities. You can start a “big” Project Management Office at once which handles all the project activities or you can start small. See how many PMs you need to meet the expectations. Do you have them internally or do you have to recruit them? How to improve their knowledge.?. Plan it and Cost it. Its ok to go through text books to get some guidelines to form a PMO ., But be practical. You need to get that knowledge, But apply your common sense.. That’s the key.