Leading an Enterprise PMO Deployment That Aligns with Strategic Vision

  • Strategy Goals, Objectives, Deliverables, Expectations
  • PMO Leader Role in Strategy Development
  • Right Sized PMO Deployment Based on Strategy
  • Creating Value in PMO Deployment
  • Leading an Enterprise-Level PMO that Aligns to the Strategic Vision is the Key to Deploying an Effective Program Management Infrastructure.

    Identifying and Developing Project Management Methodology, Best Practices and Standards for the PMO Requires the Proper Level of Direction Based on the Strategic Vision of the Organization. Having a Consistent and Disciplined PMO Infrastructure Aligned to Strategic Objectives at the Enterprise Level Can Make the Difference Between Success and Failure of an Organization if it is Deployed Correctly and Appropriately. PMO Leaders Must Understand the Overall Business Goals and Breakthrough Objectives so that the PMO Adds Value with a “Right-Sized” Solution to Successfully DELIVER RESULTS. PMO Leaders Collaborate with Other Executives and Leaders to Align the Enterprise-Level PMO with the Strategic Priorities and Objectives of the Organization Using Industry Best Practices for Strategy Development. Enterprise-Level PMO Deployment Best Practices can be Applied at the Portfolio, Program, Individual Project Level.

    Alignment to Strategy

    PMO deployment aligned to goals and objectives.

    Alignment to Strategy

    PMO is a Means to an End – Deliverables are Not the PMO Artifacts. The Purpose of the PMO is to “Enable” the Success of the Organization. Knowing and Aligning to the Strategic Vision Will Help demonstrate the “value” of the PMO, help the PMO team understand what success looks like and ensure that the PMO DELIVERS RESULTS tied to the goals and objectives of the organization

    The PMO Leader Must Know the Business and a Significant Part is Knowing and Understanding the Strategic Vision of the Organization

    The PMO Must Drive Results and Improved Performance

    Strategy According to PMBOK

    Projects and Strategic Planning
    • Projects are often utilized as a means of achieving an organization’s

    strategic plan

    • Organizations manage portfolios based on their strategic plan

    • Those components contributing the least to the portfolio’s strategic objectives may be excluded

    • A PMO may be delegated the authority
    Develop Project Charter

    The key benefits of this process are that it provides a direct link between the project and the strategic objectives of the organization…

    Developing the Strategic Plan

    PMO Leaders role in the organization’s strategics vision.

    •The PMO leader(s) Should be Part of the Overall Executive or Leadership Team •One of the Primary Roles of the Executive Leadership Team in Any Organization is to Develop the Strategy Including the High-Level Goals, Objectives and Targets •In Larger Organizations, There May be Several Layers of the Strategy Development •The PMO Leader Should be High in This Hierarchy and May Be on Numerous 2nd Tier Organization Strategy Development Teams •PMO Leader is a Critical Voice in the Organization’s Strategy Development •Typically, the PMO Leader Has Extensive Overall Business Experience and Insight Into What it takes in Achieving the High-Level Goals and Objectives

    •One of the Best Practices From Lean Manufacturing that can be Applied in Strategy Development is the X-Matrix •A Management Process that Aligns with an Organization’s Functions and Activities with its Strategic Objectives •A Specific Plan (Typically Annually) is Developed with Precise Goals, Actions, Timelines, Responsibilities and Measures. Lean Enterprise Institute, Inc. – 2014 •The Process of Creating the X-matrix can be used to Develop the Strategy Itself •Most Leaders Have a Good Idea of What the Breakthrough Goals Ought to be, but the Process of Filling in the Other Sections of the Tool can be Very Revealing •To be Effective, the Completion of the X-matrix Requires the Involvement of Multiple Stakeholders, Giving Different Perspectives and the Opportunity to Help Determine How the Team will Navigate Toward True North


    •Finding the Right Balance in Prioritization Based on the Strategy •Relationship Between Constraints •Triple Constraint – Pick Two •Organization Must Decide Which Constraints Have the Most and Least Flexibility

    Breakthrough Objective:  •Get To Market Faster Than the Competition •Schedule or “Time” is the Priority •May be Some Flexibility on Content or Budget •PMO Cannot Add Time to the Project with Unnecessary Process •If Schedule is at Risk for Slipping •PM May Need to Work with Leadership to Add More Funding to the Budget •PM May Work With the Technical Leaders to Evaluate any Features or Content that Could be Removed from Scope to Remove Tasks From the Schedule

    •Breakthrough Objective:  •Lowest Price Compared to Competition •Budget or “Cost” is the Priority •May be Some Flexibility on Content or Schedule •PMO Cannot Add Cost to the Project with Additional Process •Time is Money •If at Risk for Going Over Budget •PM May Need to Work with Leadership to Add More Time to Reduce Overtime Pay, Expedite Fees, etc. •PM May Work with the Technical Leader to Evaluate Any Features or Content that Could be Removed from Scope to Reduce the cost

    Breakthrough Objective: 

    Offer Highest Quality with Most Features and Capability

    Content or “Scope” is the Priority

    May be Some Flexibility on Schedule or Budget

    PMO May Have a Less Critical Role in this Environment

    Schedule Slips May be Acceptable to Get “More”

    Going over Budget May be Acceptable to get “More”

    PM May be Reporting to Leadership with Limited Effort to Make Corrections

    Good PM Discipline is Still Important with Appropriate Tailoring

    Right-Sized PMO

    •Identifying and developing project management methodology, best practices and standards for the PMO requires the appropriate level of direction based on the specific strategy of the organization •Too much oversight or rigor can constrain progress and add non-valuable time and overhead to the effort •Conversely, not enough discipline can cause a lack of control and may defeat the purpose of having the PMO

    •Program/Project Managers and the PMO Leadership can focus too much on the PMO “deliverables” •They see the project management process and artifacts as the deliverables. •More Time on the PMO requirements than on actual product development or the “work” that the PMO is managing. •This can be a value-add proposition •Execution “work” was reduced and more efficient as a result of the project management discipline

    •Developing The Enterprise-Level PMO •Appropriate Level •Based on Strategy

    Project Management Methodology

    Best Practices

    Standards, Processes and Procedures

    Key Performance Indicators

    Risk Management

    There Must be a Solid ROI for Having a PMO •The PMO and Discipline That it Adds Can (and Should) Be a Critical Part of The Business Strategy •Consistency •Predictability •Ability to Realistically Assess Probability of Success in Future Projects or Bids •If there is Skepticism, Build Consensus by Addressing Pain Points that are Preventing Achievement of Strategic Goals

    Investment of Time, Funding and Resources to the PMO

    Leadership and the Organization will expect to see a return for that investment

    Leading an Enterprise-Level PMO Deployment that Aligns with Strategic Vision is the Key to Having a Successful and Effective Program Management Infrastructure •PMO Leader has a Significant Role in Strategy Development •X-Matrix Tool Can be Used in Developing Strategy, or “Vision” for the Organization •Application of the Triple Constraint in PMO Deployment Aligned to the Strategic Breakthrough Objectives •Right-Sized PMO Deployment Based on Strategy – Too Much vs. Not Enough •PMO Deployment Must Demonstrate Value and Return On Investment (ROI)

    References and Acknowledgements

    Lean Lexicon 5th Edition

      Publisher:  Lean Enterprise Institute, Inc. – 2014

      ISBN:  0-9667843-6-7

    PMBOK GUIDE – A Guide to the Project Management Body of Knowledge, Sixth Edition

      Published By: Project Management Institute, Inc. – 2017

      ISBN: 978-1-62825-199-9

    Edward Leydon is an International PMO and Strategy Leader with 20 years of Engineering and Program Management Experience. He has led Successful Large-Scale Aerospace Development and Strategic Business Initiative Programs with annual budgets of over $120M. Edward has built Up Multiple PMO Organizations and Frameworks from the Ground Up Using his experience and established Best Practices. He has trained PMO Leaders and Program Management Teams in China, Czech Republic, India, Puerto Rico, UAE, UK and USA.

    Edward’s employment history includes Staff Systems Engineer/Engineering Program Manager at Lockheed Martin from 2005-2012, PMO Director at Honeywell Aerospace from 2012-2019 and currently Director of PMO and Strategy at Beacon Red in Abu Dhabi, UAE where he has been located since 2020.