RPP for PMO (and other enabling functions): Part 1

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The RPP refresh (in my view) has been designed so that submissions from non-delivery focused people can be taken into account in the whole process. We will see when I get to the next stage (submission and review) if that works out for me, but so far so good. I am a happy PMO person.

What follows is my detailed review:

On the road to professionalising our industry, the APM PMO SIG were very keen to get involved in the latest iteration of the Registered Project Professional (RPP) to see how easy or how hard it is to complete if you are not directly involved in the delivery of projects; but are in fact providing support to enable successful outcomes.

Since the RPP has been refreshed I have been involved in reviewing the documentation and am effectively ‘testing the system’ as myself – a bonefide PMO consultant who doesn’t do project delivery anymore. I wanted to know if I could complete and go through the process without having to ‘fudge’ the information provided to ‘make it fit’.

The guidance (for me) is clear and all I had to do was see each PMO as a project of sorts; which it kind of is anyway. When I contributed to the 2013 version of Projects, Programmes and Portfolio Offices guidance we had a big debate around whether we should run PMO implementations and transformations as projects or not!

The form is clear and easy to use – I was half expecting the ‘form’ style to not be quite as slick as it is (a lot of organisations have trouble making them work), but I am pleasantly surprised. The first part is all the housekeeping – two referees must be included; one of which should be a line manager. Simples.

So now for Part 1: Project Overviews

The next part is where the last version got a bit sticky. The delivery aspects of projects and programmes need to be written down in less than 400 words which I spent half the time removing text once I decided what I wanted to say!

At least two ‘projects’ need to be included which need to include key aspects such as:

  • Challenges and areas of conflict experienced
  • Stakeholders and their interests
  • Parallel working
  • Results

Now, as I said earlier if you change the word project to PMO, all of the above (and more besides) certainly apply; some in spades even!! I took a greenfield PMO and a transformation PMO as my delivery examples and they genuinely seemed to fit into the framework.

Yes, I have seen that people are still perplexed that the guidance has a lean towards delivery. The way I see it, the APM get a load of stick for a lot of unnecessary things. They cannot be all things to all people in these kind of guidance documents; it they did it would be 100 pages or more!

Part 2 will deal with the Competence Questions

Emma-Ruth Arnaz-Pemberton

Posted by Emma-Ruth Arnaz-Pemberton on 25th Sep 2017

About the Author

A Project, Programme and Portfolio specialist with extensive experience in the change management industry with a particular focus on collaboration, PMO conception & strategy, method and capability development.

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