Inconsistencies in managing projects cause inefficiencies for a company with several projects or programmes on simultaneously. This goes without saying, and one key reason why is because of the paperwork not being standardised. Individual and different project reporting causes confusion and may lead to wrong decisions which can cost time, money and one’s well-being. After all, if one person uses a particular kind of reporting and another stakeholder uses a completely different style of reporting, it can become difficult to document and stay organised. Project control becomes more difficult and attention goes to the wrong project and like a domino effect, one challenge after another reveals itself. Before long, big issues begin to surface and the project goes into panic mode. Now the full attention of the management is required and instead of preventing issues, everyone goes into fire-fighting mode. In this special project period, usually the most money is spent to rescue the project. Ad-hoc management and inconsistent reporting causes additional work for the management and the project managers; and let’s be honest, there is already enough on their plate without the added miseries!
Standardising project planning, project execution, monitoring and
control via one overall PMO will reduce the management effort and increase efficiency for execution and reporting.
The PMO is introducing Enterprise Project Management with processes and templates standardised for each business field project or programme. A PMO’s responsibility is to overlook all projects and support the projects based on their current issues and risks. In other words, the projects must have the proper issue and risk management under the PMO governance.
The following chart is a typical organisation interface visual and is part of our particular process description. It introduces a matrix organisation between a PMO and the Specific Business Fields in an organisation.
In most PMOs, strategic leadership is required to deliver the necessary values and benefits from the projects to the organisation. Researching or forming some of your own PMO best practises will only help you in the long term: a little time and effort now can yield huge results in the future. Spend some time researching and standardising your PMO.
To simplify the PMO administration, a set of procedures and templates are required from the beginning. A PMO Charter will define the PMO Mission and Vision and how the procedures shall be applied. In short, a PMO works well if it is done right from the very beginning.
Implementing the PMO
For effective PMO implementation, nominate a person in charge who has the necessary management support. The best would be to have an all-in-one template package that will keep you neat and organised regardless of the size of the project you are working on. Forget about going online and downloading the free or cheap pre-made templates. Invest in proper templates even if it costs a little money. Ideally, ISO9001 standardised templates would be worth paying for. Using these processes and templates reduces your PMO implementation by several months. And as you know, time is money. Assuming that the implementation is only 6 months instead of 12 months, it can save you 50% of the implementation costs. Again, do it right the first time: spend a little time and money now to save and reap huge rewards later.
The follow reporting example is a Monthly PMO Dashboard from our own project templates suite.
Besides the executive summary, a commercial summary is also available to have an immediate view on the cash flow and pending payment milestones. A Milestone Trend Analysis (MTA) gives an immediate sight on each project completion date or delays while a more detailed line-by-line view provides the key information and health status with the traffic light system.
Depending on the management requirements, a Project Management Analysis and the potential measures is included to show the improvements towards PMO maturity. In short, organising something in your business and PMO will support you in keeping cleaned, organised and knowing exactly where your project is on the timeline. Take the time to do it now to avoid upsets, time costs and lost finances in the future!