Thursday, November 11, 2010

A practical 3 step approach to kicking off programs in different Business Units (BUs)

Okay, your company has committed to a PMO and has agreed formally or informally to the overhead. Having implemented in a BU, senior leadership is finding it useful and wants to rapidly expand the matrix organization.

Programs are kicked in different BUs and PMO is asked to sync them up and run them up to a common process. While the tactics may vary  from organization to organization (As there are different types of PMOs) , my experience is that it is possible to classify actions into just 3 broad steps

1. Setup Governance
2. Establish Teaming
3. Sign-off on portfolio/program scope [Not the project scope which is usually part of the Project itself]

What do I mean by this?
1. Setup governance - Getting the sponsor and resource managers to agree about project objectives and agree to review the same (together is important). Setting up a chair to resolve conflict if there is disagreement and agree on time commitments/schedules for reviews

2. Establish Teaming - Getting atleast the PM nominated (who will then estimate and track resources)

3. Sign-off on program scope - especially important as there will be a lot which will not be covered in the first pilot . Important to say what will not be in the new process

While there is a lot of verbose documentation on how to setup programs and follow a standard process, I feel that this is a kind of jumpstart guide (3 steps) to PMO nirvana rather than stall and run in circles in a large organization. Communicating this to executive management and getting their buy in is also easier.(Most of it is their intervention in these tasks)

References of some links on PMO setup (Talks of a parts but not quite the steps)

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