People Transformation

Investing in PMOs: How to Ensure Your Projects Thrive

Date:June 10, 2024

Delivering projects on time and within budget is crucial for our clients. While project managers are often recognised as the key to this success, there’s another essential player behind the scenes: the Project Management Officer (PMO).

Justus Roex, a PMO at a large pension fund, reveals the vital role PMOs play in supporting project, programme, and portfolio managers. His experiences highlight how PMOs drive successful project delivery. Through Justus’s journey, discover the impact PMOs have in the world of project management.

Right after his studies, Justus moved from the UK to The Netherlands and started his career as a financial accountant at a payment services provider. However, he quickly discovered an interest in the execution-side of his projects, leading him to transition into project management. This started out with a role as business change manager, and eventually became his current role of project management consultant at Projective Group.

Today, Justus is on assignment as a PMO specialist for a major pension service provider. This client needed a PMO because they were working on a complex project involving the separation of a large client out of a fund structure. This project required a year of preparation as it involved moving a significant amount of assets, including equity, derivatives, cash, dividends, and claims, all at once and with high precision.

Recognising the project’s scale and complexity, the project manager sought additional support, and that’s where Justus’s PMO expertise came into play. His main responsibilities included the management of operational processes, documentation and reporting of progress and risks, and communication with stakeholders. Notably, this allowed the project manager to free up his time to focus on core project management activities.

Justus highlights the skills necessary to be a good PMO. There are some essential qualities that a PMO must have: Justus’ extensive project management experience provides a solid foundation for his current assignment, while his strong organisational abilities help the project to run smoothly.

With my proactiveness, calm demeanor and good interpersonal skills, I help build trust and collaboration within the project team. This creates a constructive environment for problem-solving.

While some view PMO as mainly handling meetings and paperwork, Justus’ assignment was far more than that. “I’ve witnessed firsthand how a well-designed PMO can improve project efficiency. The PMO structure streamlined our team’s operations, resulting in notable success.”

A key lesson Justus has learned from his experience is the crucial role of assembling the right team. Having highly skilled and creative subject matter experts and stakeholders on board significantly improves the project’s outcome. This underscores the critical role PMOs play in driving project success by ensuring a well-rounded team is in place.

In conclusion, Justus’ assignment highlights the crucial role of PMOs in project success. While project managers often receive the spotlight, PMOs like Justus provide essential behind-the-scenes support, driving efficiency and effectiveness at every stage. Transitioning from finance to project execution, Justus exemplifies the diverse skills and dedication required in this role. His story underscores the importance of PMOs in assembling the right team and navigating complex projects successfully. As organisations tackle increasingly intricate projects, the role of PMOs will be vital in delivering projects on time and within budget, meeting client and stakeholder needs.

Inspired by his story? Check out our open vacancies right here!

Established in 2006, Projective Group is a leading Financial Services change specialist.

We are recognised within the industry as a complete solutions provider, partnering with clients in Financial Services to provide resolutions that are both holistic and pragmatic.  We have evolved to become a trusted partner for companies that want to thrive and prosper in an ever-changing Financial Services landscape.