What is the purpose and mission of a PMO?
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The PMO mission of AtekPC had been growing slowly since 2006, when it began. A year later, in spring, the purpose was still not clearly visible. This is because the documents highlighting these functions did not exist. The initial function was to have the office functional to prove its effectiveness. The purpose was determined by the benefits reaped on project practices. The benefits were not measurable but were viewed in terms of Information technology improvement performance, the efficiency of the projects, how the resources were utilized and managed, and the ability of the company to launch new products (Applegate, 2003). Steinberg, the Manager of Application Development, explains that the main mission or purpose of the PMO is cost reduction and the improvement of projects. The PMO was to ensure the team was agile and creative to promote the unveiling of new products. The PMO had two specific functions. The project focused duties involved mentorship and training, and Enterprise-oriented duties, which involves portfolio management, project improvement, standards, tools, and methods.
What are the main challenges and obstacles in implementing a PMO?
Strider, Chief Information Officer, encountered many challenges while trying to implement the PMO. AdtekPC suffered many technical challenges during its setup and implementation. This is because the company lacked proper organization from top management to low-level workers. The main obstacles faced were that AtekPC lacked support from stakeholders. The senior executives also had different opinions about the PMO since the concept was formulated at a lower level. The firm did not have a foreseeable future of the PMO the lacked the necessary visibility. This meant the organization did not have clear set goals or objectives that the PMO has to reach.
Different departments in the organization clashed and disagreed on implementation and functions, some of the department heads did not want to implement the PMO concept in their projects. This made it very difficult to implement the concept. The company also faced resistance to change; the workers were not ready to stop their old culture. AtekPC had a shortage of workforce to promote the PMO. They lacked expert resources. The staff was made up of a director and three contracted Managers. The professionals were not enough to help stabilize the PMO. AtekPC lacked a clear set of vision or purpose that were later implemented, gradually slowing down the process. Since the values of the PMO were not measurable, the IT departments decided to work on a slower strategy that enabled the project to prove it’s self through mentorship of a single project at a time (Applegate, 2003). The strategy did not work out since they could not address the challenges caused by cultural limitations.
What structures and governance mechanisms are critical to effective PMO implementation?
The executives have to outline a clear roadmap and time frame that the PMO is expected to mature. This is critical in the implementation of the PMO since it draws focus and attention to the projects in different departments. The company has a performance measuring strategy; this helps in measuring their advancement. The PMO was initiated to improve the company’s performance; therefore, measuring methods and tools have to be implemented to assist in gauging improvements across departments. Structures have to be set up to define the accountability of the project. Initially, no one knew who was responsible for the PMO. A permanent body and structure have to be setup to help implement an effective project. AtekPC had a temporary model. The Chief Information Officer has to offer more support to the implementation of the PMO if the project is to be effective. AtekPC CIO offered very little support to the implementation and structure of the project, causing challenges.
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How Much PM is enough PM? How much PMO support is Enough PMO support?
AtekPC did not have a measuring tool to gauge PM effectiveness; this led to failure and challenges in the implementation of the PMO. There is no definite measurable amount of PM that can satisfy effective implementation; for the PM to be considered enough, it should be able to actively improve all structure and project practices. Valuation of the practice is also essential in gauging its effectiveness. AtekPC has a mandate to value the progress or improvement of practices throughout its operations. Accountability of the PMO is essential in implementation; the case study states no one was specifically accountable or responsible for the PMO. To ensure there is enough PM practiced in the firm, clear authority lines have to be outlined to show the responsibilities of the different projects and who stands accountable. All-round support of projects is essential in implementing an effective PMO. Senior executives and stakeholders have to offer support for the PMO to be effective. AtekPC lacked support from senior executives, department heads, and stakeholders leading to several challenges and obstacles. To have enough support is to have all members of the firm on board and in agreement with the PMO. Cultural barriers resistance to change has to be addressed.
Applegate.,L. M., Austin., R. D., McFarlan., F., & Applegate., L. M. (2003). Corporate information strategy and management : text and cases / Lynda M. Applegate, Robert D. Austin, F. Warren McFarlan. Boston : McGraw-Hill Irwin, c2003.