High priority PMO-activity: Shorter Time-to-market and project-lifecycle. How?
TIME-to-MARKET and project life cycle:
PMO-professionals are busy people and PMOs a very busy place. Many choices and decisions have to be made. To keep respect and prove its relevance the PMO is forced to evaluate: "How can the we best support the company and proves our value?" AND "How can the PMO help the company execute the company strategy or ensure success with its project and programs".
In order to answer to these questions some PMOs will contribute by initiating activities leading to a shorter "Time-to-market" and/or a shorter project life cycle. This is regardless the industry, private or public sector. Even in "Not for profit" organisations. Competitiveness and the ability to show results fast is a main driver.
This is also the case for a PMO I recently visited
Check out the white board in the picture above. The translation to English would be "Causes of long lead times".
Resolving issues concerning too long lead times.
The company I am assisting is a large infrastructure company with + 2000 employees. They have an enormous amount of projects running, some of them very large road, railway, tunnel and bridge projects, some of them are even noted specifically on the "overall budget of Denmark". Despite heavy training, education of project managers and huge focus on planning, still it was felt that project lead times were too long. For this reason it was decided to begin collecting data systematically whenever there were any kind of stop, halt, waiting, excess process time, decision period, shift between personal, vendor, internal or external supplier, contract negotiation etc. etc. Project managers began reporting on any reason for a delay or lack of progress. The test period covered some 30 projects and it lead the PMO team to identify the major reasons for long lead times.
What are the reasons in your organisation/projects and what will you do about it?
For this specific part of the company I visited, they found the following courses to be significant:
Resolving contract issues with external supplier (Some suppliers see an interest in delaying the clarifying of open issues)
Discrepancies in understanding technical terminology
Important process steps not fully clarified.
This lead to a number of updates in how to deal with conflicts regarding open contract issues, clarifying tech questions and a new way of drawing and highlighting important process steps. The first signs of improved project life cycle have been seen.
There were a number of other courses impacting the lead time. If you want to hear more about the "Time-to-market" project and the full list of courses contact me directly via firstname.lastname@example.org