In the 1930s, the US air corps developed the Project Office function to monitor aircraft development and this is the first recorded use of the Project Management Office.
Since then, the way PMO enables the organization has changed drastically. However, even after 80 years, companies are still searching for ways to manage the increased number of projects and overcome the PMO challenges.
80% of high-performing organizations have a PMO in place, but only 58% of those understand the value of PMO.*
Moreover, the projects that exceed over $1million was found to have a failure rate of over 50% in comparison to projects below $350,000.
It is evident that as the value of the project goes up the chances of failure also increases. So, it is important to understand the type of challenges a PMO faces and how to overcome them.
In this blog post, we will discuss the top challenges that a PMO Manager or Director of PMO faces during the execution of the project.
The Top 3 Challenges Faced by PMO Director
- Poor Resource Management
- Slow Adoption of Processes
- Inability to Identify Gaps
Challenge #1: Poor Resource Management
For any PMO, the biggest challenge is resource management. Some underlying problems of poor resource management are:
- Abysmal planning
- Unrealistic budgets and schedules
- Inability to measure ROI
- Scope creep
- Inconsistent deployment of resources
- Lack of time management
Resource allocation can only be improved if the PMO understands the scope and objective of the project. Based on this, you can allocate resources and prepare for unexpected constraints.
47.9% of all organizations make use of automated information systems for resource management. Out of these, 47.3% thought the systems were not accurate and more than 55.0% said their managers did not use the systems correctly.
These problems can be eliminated by proper coordination, efficient management of employees, planned timetable, effective portfolio reporting capabilities, and improvement in software adoption.
The extended version of this problem is that the investment in software like CA PPM and other supporting applications goes in vain for a considerable amount of time as they are not used immediately costing the organization a lot of money.
It happens because the software adoption phase takes a lot of time, and employees are unable to adopt software instantly.
The ideal way would be to use a Digital Adoption Platform that can help you analyze the roadblocks that your employees face while using the application. Based on that, you can design the ideal workflow which can help you to expedite the software adoption process.
Challenge #2: Slow Adoption of Processes
PMO projects often take time to execute and the only certain factor is the uncertainty that the project goes through during its lifecycle. So, as the scope of the project grows multiple factors like deadline, and deliverables will change drastically which could create confusion within the team.
Oftentimes traditional processes are not feasible for modern projects, and as a result, processes are subject to change. The biggest obstacle that is faced by PMO is the adoption and accurate use of the implemented process.
Most of the time the adoption of a new process is slow which impacts the result of the project. This usually happens because of internal resistance within different teams.
They resist because they do not understand the value of the new process and the benefits that they can reap by implementing them. They see it as a hindrance and try to avoid it.
Due to such delays in adoption, only 40% of projects met schedule and quality goals.
The best way would be to help them understand how the new process could help them and make their job simpler. This way you not only eliminate the fear, and insecurity of the stakeholders involved but also ensures the buy-in.
Moreover, you can use tools like Digital Adoption Platform that could help your employees with the newly implemented process.
For instance, if the process is changed within the CA PPM application, then in that case it becomes difficult for the project team to adopt the new process. In a situation like this, a Digital Adoption Platform assists you to create workflows that will guide the project team from one step to another without any hiccups which eventually helps you to be process complaint.
Challenge #3: Inability to Find Gaps
The most important challenge in the list is the inability to find gaps within the existing process. The main job of the PMO is to improve the existing processes and upskill the workforce to make a project successful and refrain from falling in the 50% failure group.
But unfortunately, most of the PMOs are not using the right tools to identify the issues with current processes and training methods. This could result in the loss of millions of dollars over the lifecycle of a project.
To avoid this, the Digital Adoption Platform can be used which helps you to find the efficiency of the current process and identify the gaps. You can find where the process is failing and based on that you can improve the existing flow of the process.
If there are 3 ways of completing the process then Apty which is powered by AI recommends the best flow that can help your employees to complete the process. Further, you can also analyze how the application is being used by the employees post the training session which gives you an idea about how effective was the training.
Overcome the Challenges
“In poorly run projects, problems can go undetected until the project fails. It’s like the drip … drip … drip of a leaky underground pipe. Money is being lost, but you don’t see it until there is an explosion.”
~ Joy Gumz.
Don’t let it happen by proper planning, efficient resource management, and using the right tools. If this topic was of interest to you then you might like the Benefits of the PMO blog post which will help you understand the importance of PMO in great detail and how to leverage PMO to meet organizational goals.