A primary imperative of a PMO is to raise a project's visibility. A clear and direct line from the project manager to a high-level manager and emphasis on project success greatly increase the chance for actual success. Although responsibility for a project rests with the project manager, in the PMO structure, senior level management shares that responsibility and can positively influence a project.

When a senior manager assumes an important role in project management, many ancillary, unproductive issues that normally arise can be eliminated. People are less willing to raise objections and more likely to avoid conflicts if they know senior management may be involved.

Is a PMO the ultimate IT project management panacea? The answer, of course, is no. No matter what approach is used, managing IT projects successfully involves hard work and risk. However, a properly funded and supported PMO can bring improvement to the process of managing IT projects. Specifically, a PMO can reduce the levels of project tension and risk. There is also an opportunity to begin to set a course for the continued improvement of project management.

When a PMO successfully delivers its first project, customer attitude about IT will begin to change. As people in the IT department, the business units, and at the senior management level begin to understand that higher levels of IT project performance are attainable, support for the PMO and in turn for the IT effort grows. Moving to those higher levels takes time, patience, and persistence, but doing so is worth the effort.

It can be argued that a PMO adds expense to the project. That argument is correct; a PMO is not going to be free. The costs associated with the PMO are going to reach beyond that of dollars. The stress of using new approaches, the effort required to sell, install, and implement the PMO, and the tension associated with the cultural changes brought about by the PMO all have to considered as costs. However, the benefit to be found in the effective use of a PMO quickly negates any concerns about unnecessary additional expense. A PMO is an effective tool to improve the delivery of IT projects. Organizations that adequately fund and support PMOs find they have made the right choice.

Project Management Made Easy

Project Management Made Easy

What you need to know about… Project Management Made Easy! Project management consists of more than just a large building project and can encompass small projects as well. No matter what the size of your project, you need to have some sort of project management. How you manage your project has everything to do with its outcome.

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