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PMO Conference 2022 \\ The Award-Winning Client Services PMO – Ian Hammond

The PMO of the Year 2021 winner brings insights from their Client Services PMO – supporting over 600 customers and 750 projects – with a team of 45 PMO professionals.

They have been on a mission over the last few years to change the perception of the PMO:
“We’re not the spreadsheet creators, the random data requesters, the administrators or the get in the wayers.
We’re the organisers, the collaborators, the relentless fixers and the ones with the insights.”
In this session we will learn how they planned their transformation; understand what their vision was; how they defined their services and the roadmap they put in place.
We will also gain insights into how they measured their success and what value was delivered to their organisation, and of course, their clients.

Session Recording

Presentation Slidedeck

>>> Presentation Slidedeck

Session Notes

Overview of the Session

In this session, the mission was to change the perception of the PMO in a large organisation (British Telecom) from being seen as just a data collection operation to one that increases efficiency and creates value to the organisation through data analytics, project support and the establishment of order from a disparate array of project management operations.

This change was to be made without seriously disrupting the PMO’s 600 clients, 850 professional colleagues and 750 on-going projects.
Ian describes 4-steps for formulating how to enable this transformation:

  1. Planning the transformation and prioritisation.  Estimating the sequence of activities or functions that would generate the greatest value and in the shortest time.
  2. Defining the vision of the PMO.  What client services should be available, the strategies for delivering them, the cultural norms to be established, and the future format and structure of the PMO
  3. Defining the standards of services to be provided.  Tools and techniques, governance and quality assurance, business planning, specialist support to PMs, resource balancing,…..)
  4. The roadmap. Set the expectations and schedule, define ways to communicate progress, constantly developing the services catalogue, the methodologies and cultural engagement strategies.

So what actually happened?

They created a simple “sound bite” – Love your PMO – then set about asking customers what they should do.  Responding to this question was made as simple as possible, and eventually, as customers noticed the difference in what they were getting from the PMO, they started to trust it and make more use of its capabilities.

As a result of these reforms, there has been an estimated corporate saving of £4M so far through operational efficiencies and resource optimisation.
What were the key lessons?

  • Figure out how best to engage a large user community
  • Manage expectations and the roles taken on board
  • Carefully set the pace of transition to ensure the implementation is manageable and not too disruptive to the users
  • There is no end to the process – constant refinement and upgrading is endemic in transformation of this type

Many thanks to PMO Reporter on the day, Graham Gunn for this overview of the session.

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