So far, I’ve talked about the role of the EPMO, effective PMO communication, and how a PMO can drive innovation in an organization — all key points from Gartner’s recent PPM and Governance Summit. In this last post from this series, I’ll talk about the fourth and final point: how driving PMO maturity needs to be a reflection of — and a driver of — organizational maturity.
There are two elements to this. First, a PMO must constantly change to adapt to the growing maturity of the organization. But that’s just the passive aspect of this. In a more active role, the PMO needs to indeed drive organizational maturity.
So it’s a matter of assessing and then matching the current needs and maturity of the organization (something half of all PMOs fail to do according to Gartner), and then laying out a roadmap to help the organization think in terms of business capabilities and strategic execution.
This leads me to a subtle, but related, topic: the name of the PMO. I’ve consulted to some organizations where a simple name change better reflected the current role of the PMO and created the right mentality to align the organization. For instance, in one organization with multiple PMOs, I suggested the newly create “Enterprise PMO” be called a Project Support Office instead. First, it removed some of the stigma of “EPMO as methodology police” and better reflected the fledgling PMO’s goal to support and integrate the other existing (and more mature) PMOs. As a PMO matures, it might be called a Strategic Execution Office, or Business Capabilities Center, or something that reflects the growing scope and maturity of the PMO.
And mature it must. To make a difference in the organization, the PMO can’t just “document the battle” — they must lead the charge. This means driving toward best practices around business capabilities, optimizing projects and aligning resources based on business value, and leading to faster and more innovative initiatives though adaptive models.
Indeed, as Garner validates in their summit kickoff, rethinking the role of the EPMO; reshaping PMO communication; revitalizing the organization toward greater adaptability and innovation; and reclassifying the PMO as a reflection of — and driver of — organizational maturity, will reposition the PMO as a key and vital component of organizational success.