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Topics: Communications Management, Government, PMO
Developing a PMO from the ground up
Network:79



Hello Everyone,
I am not sure if this situation is typical but I want to share anyway. I have been tasked with creating a PMO and project governance in an organization whose project management maturity is well almost nonexistent. There is so much to do I didn't know where to start, so I began with the deveopment of a decision brief for the Dirctor to determine which type of PMO the organization needed. The Director really didn't know what he wanted so we discussed what outcomes he would like to see with the project portfolio. I am drafting the various charters for the PMO, the Project change board and IV&V or the governance procedures. I am have trouble getting buy-in from staff and leadership is not as engaged as I would like. The team I am working with is of varying skills and I am the only PMP. Does anyone have any ideas on how to jumpstart this effort?
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Network:69



Hi Eric, how are you? As I see, you have a great challenge ahead. But, let´s overcome this challenge peace by peace. I will give you some tips, how to make it happen.

1) As soon as there isn´t a maturity of Project Management, in my opinion, you should start a PMO focused on create one Project Management Methodology, with Project Templates, One Framework tailor made to your Company according with the type of business you´re inserted and One project repository for your documents and lesson learned, for example.

2) One of the main rules of the PMO, is the PMO has the responsibility for educating the organization it serves about the benefits to have a PMO. You can create one presentation with the As Is (the present scenario in your company, showing the gaps in Project Management, the lack of maturity…) and the To Be (the future scenario in your company with the PMO implemented, the gaps filled by the PMO).

3) At last, try to involve all the stakeholders in this process. Share your ideas with the team. Try to work into the needs presented by the team. Engage them in your battle. Like this, for example, you said the team you´re working with has different members with different skills, try to organize them in a way to potentialize the unique skills, making their life easier.

Best Regards and Good Luck,
Daniel Carneiro da Silva, PMP
...
1 reply by Eric Jones PMP, MBA
Apr 09, 2018 9:50 AM
Eric Jones PMP, MBA
...
Hello Daniel,

Thank you for that insight. There are so many things to address but one of the first things is to understand why we are doing what we are doing. I recently read the Blog by Laura Barnard,"4 questions to ask when starting a PMO". Your posting echoed her ideas on understanding the organizations challenges with project management and developing a strategy to create a PMO to solve those challenges. I am developing the framework and scheduling a few meetings with stakeholders to understand thier needs and expectations of this PMO.
Network:15



Hi Eric,

I have faced similar situations like the one you describe. I typically do the following:

1. Question why the organization wants a PMO? What does the organization expect the PMO to do that it doesn't do currently? This typically gives an indication about the PMO type the organization is aiming for and will also serve as broad level performance indicators that can be further defined to evaluate the performance of this PMO.
2. Identify the current functions that are being performed by the organization that can be consolidated in a PMO. (Point 1 will serve as a guideline in identifying the services that can be consolidated)
3. Assess the gap between Point 1. and Point 2 and identify the stages / steps that would take it to the desired PMO level. These stages / steps can also serve as low hanging fruit (quick wins) that can be highlighted while presenting PMO performance
4. Prepare a plan to reach the desired PMO level with milestones (including quick wins). This is essential to retain management interest in continuing with a PMO while presenting its progress and performance
5. Identify success factors (this is where the point of stakeholder ownership can be put forth thus solving the issue of buy-in) that will help the organization reach the desired PMO level from its current stage
6. Define charter and get sign-off from the identified stakeholders

The above steps are just an outline but serves as a good starting point to put things in perspective.

Hope this helps.

All the best.
...
2 replies by Eric Jones PMP, MBA and Jessica Spector
Apr 09, 2018 9:56 AM
Eric Jones PMP, MBA
...
Shrinath,
Performing a gap analysis is a great idea to demonstrate the need as well as provide short-term and mid-term targets for the implementation team. Thank you for responding, your post is very helpful.

Eric
May 03, 2018 7:59 PM
Jessica Spector
...
Hi there. Can you give me an example of a service outside the PMO that can be consolidated to the PMO?
Network:79



Apr 09, 2018 8:51 AM
Replying to Daniel Silva
...
Hi Eric, how are you? As I see, you have a great challenge ahead. But, let´s overcome this challenge peace by peace. I will give you some tips, how to make it happen.

1) As soon as there isn´t a maturity of Project Management, in my opinion, you should start a PMO focused on create one Project Management Methodology, with Project Templates, One Framework tailor made to your Company according with the type of business you´re inserted and One project repository for your documents and lesson learned, for example.

2) One of the main rules of the PMO, is the PMO has the responsibility for educating the organization it serves about the benefits to have a PMO. You can create one presentation with the As Is (the present scenario in your company, showing the gaps in Project Management, the lack of maturity…) and the To Be (the future scenario in your company with the PMO implemented, the gaps filled by the PMO).

3) At last, try to involve all the stakeholders in this process. Share your ideas with the team. Try to work into the needs presented by the team. Engage them in your battle. Like this, for example, you said the team you´re working with has different members with different skills, try to organize them in a way to potentialize the unique skills, making their life easier.

Best Regards and Good Luck,
Daniel Carneiro da Silva, PMP
Hello Daniel,

Thank you for that insight. There are so many things to address but one of the first things is to understand why we are doing what we are doing. I recently read the Blog by Laura Barnard,"4 questions to ask when starting a PMO". Your posting echoed her ideas on understanding the organizations challenges with project management and developing a strategy to create a PMO to solve those challenges. I am developing the framework and scheduling a few meetings with stakeholders to understand thier needs and expectations of this PMO.
Network:79



Apr 09, 2018 9:10 AM
Replying to Shrinath Iyengar
...
Hi Eric,

I have faced similar situations like the one you describe. I typically do the following:

1. Question why the organization wants a PMO? What does the organization expect the PMO to do that it doesn't do currently? This typically gives an indication about the PMO type the organization is aiming for and will also serve as broad level performance indicators that can be further defined to evaluate the performance of this PMO.
2. Identify the current functions that are being performed by the organization that can be consolidated in a PMO. (Point 1 will serve as a guideline in identifying the services that can be consolidated)
3. Assess the gap between Point 1. and Point 2 and identify the stages / steps that would take it to the desired PMO level. These stages / steps can also serve as low hanging fruit (quick wins) that can be highlighted while presenting PMO performance
4. Prepare a plan to reach the desired PMO level with milestones (including quick wins). This is essential to retain management interest in continuing with a PMO while presenting its progress and performance
5. Identify success factors (this is where the point of stakeholder ownership can be put forth thus solving the issue of buy-in) that will help the organization reach the desired PMO level from its current stage
6. Define charter and get sign-off from the identified stakeholders

The above steps are just an outline but serves as a good starting point to put things in perspective.

Hope this helps.

All the best.
Shrinath,
Performing a gap analysis is a great idea to demonstrate the need as well as provide short-term and mid-term targets for the implementation team. Thank you for responding, your post is very helpful.

Eric
Network:1669



PMO, as other physical business units, must be created because the strategic decision about project/program/portfolio management process must be located into a physical unit. So, the first thing to do, is to understand that the use of those process will solve a business problem. Then, first thing to do, is to detect the problem to create the solution (PMO). Remember that by definition problem is the gap between reality as perceived and reality as desired reality so you can work on the perception, you can work on the desire or you can work on the gap to solve the problem. Here comes the link to one article I wrote time ago and was published by the IIBA and the PMI as "best practice" and talked about how to create the right solution. Hope it helps: https://www.projectmanagement.com/blog-pos...-right-solution
Network:14395



Many good points here already Eric. Did you try Laura Barnard's blog on this site?

https://www.projectmanagement.com/blogs/36...en-I-was-you---
...
1 reply by Eric Jones PMP, MBA
Apr 10, 2018 8:32 AM
Eric Jones PMP, MBA
...
Yes I did and ithas helped me to shape my strategy going forward. I also found a few very helpful webinars as well. I can't locate the names right now but when I do I will post the names. Thank you!!
Network:2578



I am a similar position. We are working to set up our first ever PMO. We knew many of our "Pain Points" already. Projects came to the team from all directions. Everyone thought theirs was the most important. No processes in place. Teams were being over extended. Projects were completed but never used. Managers were confused about what documentation was required. Managers felt they had no time to follow any process and do any documentation.
The first step was to get buy in from everyone, business partners, managers, etc. My boss did a "road show" to these people.
Next was to setup some templates and processes to get the team started. We are working with the managers to help them complete and understand the documents required for each project.
Meanwhile, we are setting up a dashboard to show what the PMO is accomplishing. This will be transparent.
We are still in the process of obtaining a budget for the PMO.
And that is as far was we got as of now. I am following the lead of my division chief and learning more and more every day.
I know there will be more great experiences as we continue and can't wait.
Good luck with your PMO!
...
1 reply by Eric Jones PMP, MBA
Apr 10, 2018 8:25 AM
Eric Jones PMP, MBA
...
Thank you for your insight Dinah.
Network:38



Eric,

You and I are in a similar situation. Our organization needs a PMO to set standard practices, so I started the process about two months ago. The buy-in is your greatest hurdle, so I suggest starting out with a steering committee of key organization decision makers first. Structure your PMO with understanding the audience - not everyone in your organization is a project genius like yourself. Sell it to the Steering Committee, and utilize them as your organizational PMO ambassadors.
Network:79



Apr 09, 2018 12:06 PM
Replying to Dinah Young
...
I am a similar position. We are working to set up our first ever PMO. We knew many of our "Pain Points" already. Projects came to the team from all directions. Everyone thought theirs was the most important. No processes in place. Teams were being over extended. Projects were completed but never used. Managers were confused about what documentation was required. Managers felt they had no time to follow any process and do any documentation.
The first step was to get buy in from everyone, business partners, managers, etc. My boss did a "road show" to these people.
Next was to setup some templates and processes to get the team started. We are working with the managers to help them complete and understand the documents required for each project.
Meanwhile, we are setting up a dashboard to show what the PMO is accomplishing. This will be transparent.
We are still in the process of obtaining a budget for the PMO.
And that is as far was we got as of now. I am following the lead of my division chief and learning more and more every day.
I know there will be more great experiences as we continue and can't wait.
Good luck with your PMO!
Thank you for your insight Dinah.
Network:79



Apr 09, 2018 11:01 AM
Replying to Sante Vergini
...
Many good points here already Eric. Did you try Laura Barnard's blog on this site?

https://www.projectmanagement.com/blogs/36...en-I-was-you---
Yes I did and ithas helped me to shape my strategy going forward. I also found a few very helpful webinars as well. I can't locate the names right now but when I do I will post the names. Thank you!!
...
4 replies by Eric Jones PMP, MBA and Jessica Spector
May 03, 2018 8:10 PM
Jessica Spector
...
I’d love to see those webinars if you can post them please
May 05, 2018 5:18 PM
Eric Jones PMP, MBA
...
I finally found the Webinar after the PDU got posted to my PMI Dashboard:

https://www.projectmanagement.com/videos/2...ject-Management

This webinar really got me thinking at the stakeholder level. I was able to develop a campaign plan to get the information I needed from the organization to begin the process of building a PMO.
May 05, 2018 5:18 PM
Eric Jones PMP, MBA
May 07, 2018 11:42 AM
Jessica Spector
...
It says product not found. can you give me the name of the webinar and I will search for it?
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