3 Essential Metrics For High-Performance PMOs

Everyone understands the determining metrics for PMO success—projects are delivered on time, within the budget and within the scope outlined in the brief.

If a PMO were a cable provider, those services would fall under the “basic” package. It gets the job done, but might be a little lacking in creating a superior entertainment experience in your home. Today’s stakeholders want a lot more for their PMO investment than the basics. They want to know their PMOs are delivering quality products, customer satisfaction, resource distribution, financial returns, and internal optimization. In short, they want the premier package complete with 300 channels, sports, and movies.

The following metrics can help determine if a PMO is delivering a high-performance experience … or just the basics. 

Metric 1: Operational Efficiency

A high-performance PMO is a master of operational efficiency — and not just through project delivery. A PMO operating at its peak should centralize all projects and portfolios to create maximum visibility and accurate oversight. They manage the project pipeline to create a steady stream of in-progress and ready-to-go projects that limit lulls in productivity. They manage abrupt changes, buffer the damage of deliverables gone wrong and make the tough choices to cut losses so that assets can be reassigned to profitable endeavors. In short, they don’t just serve as the middle layer between idea and ideation, they are the linchpin of your operational success. 

Metric 2: Business Value

High-performance PMOs can quantify their value to stakeholders in ways that bring big benefits to the table. Here are a few areas where a PMO can support organizational success and advancement: 

Improved customer satisfaction: PMOs work hard to ensure that “promises made are promises kept.” They also support innovation to bring newer, better products to market. The fact that they keep projects from busting budgets doesn’t hurt either. 

Increased productivity: Through operational efficiency, PMOs have the visibility to ensure no team member sits idle and no assets go to waste. They also reduce challenges that cause high turnover like overworked employees.

Better utilization of resources: PMOs work quickly to resolve resource crises when they occur. On the other hand, they limit challenges at the outset by relying on informed projection and planning to assign them in the planning phase. 

Costs saved/increased revenue: It’s pretty easy to see that the previous areas would influence costs and revenue. Satisfied customers return, increased productivity means greater ROI and better resource utilization means time, money and assets never get wasted. 

Metric 3: Communication

High-performance PMOs should have high-visibility, centralized access of all projects, all resources and all deliverables and be able to curate reports from that data that gives decision-makers a far better understanding about operational efficiency than just a project completion rate. It’s not enough to present numbers, a PMO should clearly and concisely share meaningful data that has an impact on the bottom like. 

Example: A PMO provides the stat that 26% of all projects are being completed late. That signals there’s a problem but doesn’t explain why rendering the data useless as far as change goes. A high-performance PMO can arm stakeholders with empowering supplemental information such as labor shortages, budget shortfalls, overly ambitious timelines, customer difficulties and more.

Metric 4: Integration

A PMO should be supporting the organization from the top-down and the bottom up. How do you find out if your PMO has successfully integrated with the organization and created a bridge between departments, employees, and leaders? Ask the following questions: 

  • Does the PMO provide timely and relevant information to support decision-making?
  • Has the PMO supported your projects with adequate resources? 
  • Does the PMO communicate changes in a timely manner? 
  • Does the PMO make sound projections for resource allocation, timelines, and delivery? 
  • Has the PMO saved time, money and resources? 
  • Does the PMO make decisions that align with business goals? 

These are just a few examples of questions that can help you understand if your PMO has supported integration that drives business value. 

Conclusion

High-performance PMOs support organizational success and bring more to the table than project delivery. In short, a PMO that meets, or even exceeds, the metrics of operational efficiency, business value, communication, and integration is anything but basic. Make sure your PMO brings you the premium package in all areas of performance.

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