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PMO – Program Management Office Functions
By Cora Systems

The inclusion of a program management office in line with their project management software tool has become a popular choice amongst organizations and project managers in recent years. The decision to implement a PMO is often taken when the number of projects being undertaken by an organization has grown to the point where the costs involved in delivering them and the risk of failure to the business is so great that centralized control and standardized processes are a necessity.

A program management office is a structure that organizations design to provide them with assistance and assurance around change management and delivery of projects and programs. A program management office or as it’s more commonly known, a PMO, can support a basic single project or program through to an organization’s entire program of work.

When a new program of work is launched within an organization a PMO is given the tasks of managing it. All aspects around the management of the program from organizing to controlling are all handled by the PMO.

The life cycle of the program; initiation, planning, execution and closure are all taken on board by the PMO. As there are strict guidelines in place through the project lifecycle and the PMO expertise, the overall success rate of projects is improved.

Program management office functions:

  1. Prioritization of new projects: Organizations have limits and do not have finance or resources in place to run every project that comes along. Therefore guidelines and processes need to be in place to ensure that the organization only takes on board projects that best fit their strategic objectives. The PMO puts a criteria in place to evaluate potential projects and give the projects with the greatest benefit the priority to move forward.
  2. Standardisation: A PMO puts a standard project management methodology in place to ensure that there is a consistent approach taken to ensure successful project results.

  3. Reviewing: A PMO is consistently reviewing ongoing projects to ensure they are meeting any baselines or standards set against it. By reviewing the ongoing projects the PMO can highlight any problems areas that would otherwise go unnoticed.

  4. Reporting: The PMO will generate consolidated program progress and status reports with information sourced from the projects that make up the program. These reports are distributed to senior management and as well as status and progress will often include on costs and benefits.

  5. Learn from mistakes: A PMO can hold “lessons learned” from previous projects so project managers can learn from past failures and also successes, and apply this knowledge to future projects.

  6. Resource and time allocation: A PMO monitors both resource demand and allocation to ensure that the right people are allocated to the right project and also that a sufficient amount of time is assigned to the project.

Overall having a PMO in an organization will provide a clear and consist process for all projects and programs to follow through standard practice, methodology and keeping in line with the organization’s goals.

Established in 1999, with over 12 years of experience in Project Management Software, Cora Systems have developed a highly functional, web-based system. Our skills and knowledge have enabled us to become a world leader in Project, Portfolio and Performance Management Software. We value our extensive client base and provide a comprehensive range of services to ensure our customers gains the full value and benefits from using ProjectVision.

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