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Topics: Agile, PMO, Scrum
What's the difference between a traditional PMO and an Agile PMO?
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There is a lot of talk about becoming Agile, at different organisational levels.
Many organisations start with adding the prefix Agile to existing roles and teams: Agile PM, Agile BA, Agile Tester, Agile QA etc.
One of the re-branded teams/units is the PMO with more and more organisations having an Agile PMO. There are guidelines in the latest PMBoK/Agile Guide.

How is an Agile PMO different than a PMO in real life?
Does the Agile PMO provide governance for Scrum Masters and/or Agile Coaches?
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An Agile PMO is an organization that has adopted Agile frameworks throughout. More specifically, the PMO supports projects and project personnel using Agile frameworks. It should just be called the PMO. We don't call the HR department an Agile HR, or the Finance department an Agile Finance Department.
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Stelian -

I'd actually take a different view on this. An agile PMO is one which works closely with its customers (whoever those are, based on its mandate), embraces lean governance and reporting, and is on the cutting edge of change for the business rather than being a laggard.

The specific delivery approaches used by project teams and whether agile roles report into the PMO is immaterial.

Kiron
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1 reply by Stelian ROMAN
Oct 12, 2018 5:01 PM
Stelian ROMAN
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What stops a ;traditional' PMO to work "closely with its customers (whoever those are, based on its mandate), embraces lean governance and reporting, and is on the cutting edge of change for the business rather than being a laggard."?

I am sure that such PMO existed before 2001
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Sante, do you know a PMO that uses Scrum instead PMBoK or PRINCE2?
IMHO Agile is an attribute not a methodology ora framework, as they say 'a minset' but according to the State of Agile reports Scrum is by far the most used Agile Framework with only 14% using hybrid frameworks.
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1 reply by Sante Vergini
Oct 13, 2018 11:13 PM
Sante Vergini
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Stelian, the reality is most Agile projects are hybrid, of which yes Scrum is the dominant partner.
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If you look at the definition of a PMO, is there anything that requires a specific project management approach - predictive or iterative? The PMO, if chartered with enough authority, can choose to enforce a specific approach. Depending upon the level of authority of the PMO, it is more likely that the PMO will range from providing guidance on potential approaches to measuring the effectiveness/performance of the project.

Agile and Waterfall are irrelevant to the definition of a PMO, but the PMO needs to have the information and/or tools needed to provide guidance for/report on which ever approaches are used on projects within the organization.
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1 reply by Stelian ROMAN
Oct 12, 2018 10:11 AM
Stelian ROMAN
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@Aaron I agree. That's why I am confuse when I hear the term Agile PMO or for that matter Agile PM. A PM is managing a project, using the framework implemented by the PMO.
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Oct 12, 2018 9:49 AM
Replying to Aaron Porter
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If you look at the definition of a PMO, is there anything that requires a specific project management approach - predictive or iterative? The PMO, if chartered with enough authority, can choose to enforce a specific approach. Depending upon the level of authority of the PMO, it is more likely that the PMO will range from providing guidance on potential approaches to measuring the effectiveness/performance of the project.

Agile and Waterfall are irrelevant to the definition of a PMO, but the PMO needs to have the information and/or tools needed to provide guidance for/report on which ever approaches are used on projects within the organization.
@Aaron I agree. That's why I am confuse when I hear the term Agile PMO or for that matter Agile PM. A PM is managing a project, using the framework implemented by the PMO.
Network:616



Oct 12, 2018 7:36 AM
Replying to Kiron Bondale
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Stelian -

I'd actually take a different view on this. An agile PMO is one which works closely with its customers (whoever those are, based on its mandate), embraces lean governance and reporting, and is on the cutting edge of change for the business rather than being a laggard.

The specific delivery approaches used by project teams and whether agile roles report into the PMO is immaterial.

Kiron
What stops a ;traditional' PMO to work "closely with its customers (whoever those are, based on its mandate), embraces lean governance and reporting, and is on the cutting edge of change for the business rather than being a laggard."?

I am sure that such PMO existed before 2001
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1 reply by Kiron Bondale
Oct 12, 2018 5:50 PM
Kiron Bondale
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Of course they did. And those were agile PMOs...

Agile wasn't an immaculate conception in 2001 - its been around for decades...

Kiron
Network:1150



Oct 12, 2018 5:01 PM
Replying to Stelian ROMAN
...
What stops a ;traditional' PMO to work "closely with its customers (whoever those are, based on its mandate), embraces lean governance and reporting, and is on the cutting edge of change for the business rather than being a laggard."?

I am sure that such PMO existed before 2001
Of course they did. And those were agile PMOs...

Agile wasn't an immaculate conception in 2001 - its been around for decades...

Kiron
Network:14702



Oct 12, 2018 7:39 AM
Replying to Stelian ROMAN
...
Sante, do you know a PMO that uses Scrum instead PMBoK or PRINCE2?
IMHO Agile is an attribute not a methodology ora framework, as they say 'a minset' but according to the State of Agile reports Scrum is by far the most used Agile Framework with only 14% using hybrid frameworks.
Stelian, the reality is most Agile projects are hybrid, of which yes Scrum is the dominant partner.
Network:1680



People inside an Agile PMO can run faster then their stakeholders when things go wrong....With all my due respect, I think we need to stop talking things Agile something. That contributes to the general confusion and jeopardizes the work of lot of people but mainly the intentions of lot of people to get a job.
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1 reply by Stelian ROMAN
Oct 14, 2018 6:17 PM
Stelian ROMAN
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Nice parallel with sport :). I agree that only sticking the prefix 'Agile' doesn't change much.
Network:616



Oct 14, 2018 6:19 AM
Replying to Sergio Luis Conte
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People inside an Agile PMO can run faster then their stakeholders when things go wrong....With all my due respect, I think we need to stop talking things Agile something. That contributes to the general confusion and jeopardizes the work of lot of people but mainly the intentions of lot of people to get a job.
Nice parallel with sport :). I agree that only sticking the prefix 'Agile' doesn't change much.
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