Why PMOs fail

Ian Needs
February 4, 2015

In many organisations, there is a wide gap between what the PMO is doing and what the business expects. This misalignment has serious consequences for both the PMO and the business.

Here’s just a sample of the recorded results:

  • 50% of project management offices close within three years (Association for Project Management)
  • Since 2008, the correlated PMO implementation failure rate is more than 50% (Gartner Project Manager 2014)
  • Only a third of all projects were successfully completed on time and on budget over the past year (Standish Group’s CHAOS report)
  • 68% of stakeholders perceive their PMOs to be bureaucratic (2013 Gartner PPM Summit)
  • Only 40% of projects met schedule, budget and quality goals (IBM Change Management Survey of 1,500 executives)

As pointed out by the first two bullets, the failure rate is very high with about half of all PMOs closed within three years.

And as Gartner points out, backed up by many other industry statistics, there is not a lot of good news when it comes to how the PMO and project teams are considered by the rest of the organisation. An amazing 68% of stakeholders perceive their PMOs to be bureaucratic and only 40% of projects met their goals when it comes to schedule, budget and quality.

For many, this misalignment is caused through a lack of adequate tools, as well as the four fundamental pillars that drive program success: resources, money, deliverables and benefits.

Find out more about why project portfolio management and PMOs fail [PDF].

Author avatar
Ian Needs
Ian Needs is the director of marketing for KeyedIn Projects Worldwide, agile cloud-based software for project and portfolio lifecycle management.
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