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Is your Project Management Office Framework BOAT afloat?

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pmo-framework-boatBy: Ferdie Visagie

Businesses need to constantly adapt to find new ways to add value, tap into new markets and to respond to the ever-changing market conditions. Change is necessary to improve. Change not done in a controlled manner is chaos.

As the key change agents in a business, Project Management Offices are vital to companies achieving their business objectives. In my experience as PMO manager, I have realised how critical it is for PMOs to utilise a Project Management Framework in order to ensure that the change is strategic rather than chaotic and effectively serve the needs of the business.

But the existence of a PMO framework does not guarantee success. So many project frameworks are underutilised at best and at worst not even given the time of day. The framework must be useful and optimised like any other organisational asset. But how does the PMO ensure its framework assets are utilised in the organisation?

To answer this question, the acronym BOAT will ensure the PMO framework investment, or any other framework for that matter, is maximised in the organisation.

BOAT: Best Practical, Owned, Accessible & Tenacity.

  • Best Practical means fit for purpose.
    • Appropriate to the level of detail required for the audience (Value chain level vs. transaction level)
    • It should be fit for purpose and fit on one page tailored to the needs of the process users
  • Owned means each component of the framework is owned with the intention to improve. The process is owned and updated by the owner who needs to achieve the specific departmental goals. This person is responsible for updating the process regularly. Initially regular updates to the process will be required and taper down as the process stabilises. All users of the process are responsible for providing input for the improvement of the process. Hence the procedure and input about the process need to be accessible.
  • Accessible means that the process owner AND stakeholders know where to access this asset. It may be accessible from an automated system or may just be a poster on a wall. It is critical that the owner of the process is identified on the process asset. Access to the process owner’s contact details should also be provided.
  • Tenacity: constant re-enforcement of the PMO framework or framework component’s objectives to serve the needs of the business.

The benefits of BOAT                   

  1. Allows people to contribute to the success of the team.
  2. Department contributes to the success of the organisation.
  3. Makes it easier for organisations to change.

How does BOAT help the PMO?

  1. Where processes or detail processes don’t exist new ones can be created by the identified people and added to KPAs.
  2. Defines the information radiator (manual or system-based)
  3. Helps to identify knowledge management areas based on process areas and map the organisation structure to the process breakdown structure so that each process component is owned. In turn each person in the organisation is an owner and/or user of a piece in the Process Breakdown Structure.
  4. Process & sub-process owners can then harvest information for knowledge management, while at the same time improving the organisation.


  1. Business Driven PMO Setup, Perry

Ready to get started with more successful PMO project management frameworks?

You can contact CoLAB for more information or check out some of Best Practical’s other useful articles.

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