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This blog post takes a look at the role of the Project Management Office (PMO) within the IT services industry, dispels some preconceptions and shows what potential the role offers and how it can be utilised decisively.

How is the Project Management Office (PMO) actually perceived and what prejudices are there?

We wanted to find out and launched an internal survey. Here are some of the most interesting questions and their answers.

What support services from the Project Management Office (PMO) can you not imagine as a project manager and why?

Some answers seemed - admittedly - unflattering: anything that goes beyond advice and support 'in the background', because too many contacts only cause uncertainty and because the PMO cannot have in-depth project knowledge due to its role.

So we are not trusted to do that much? We should only act in the background? Does this answer correspond to current practice or is this rather an outdated view of the role?

What do you imagine a PMO to be?

To our relief, the answers to this question were much more diverse and for the most part reflected what we consider to be the various aspects of the role. The Project Management Office (PMO) is not just seen as pure support 'in the background', but takes on a central and active role in the coordination and management of projects. It sets standards, provides methodological support and promotes the identification of synergy effects through its overarching function.

The Project Management Office (PMO) acts as a central point of contact and advisor, which allows it to maintain a bird's eye view and at the same time offer targeted support for critical projects. In addition, it supports the sensible utilisation of resources and guarantees precise support in the management of projects.

The diversity of the responses shows that the PMO can be a decisive factor in the successful implementation of complex project landscapes and can make a significant contribution to the efficiency and quality of project work.

Field report

In our work as part of the Project Management Office (PMO), we often experience that the role and its responsibilities can vary greatly. Especially when it comes to differentiating between internal tasks and work with the customer.

In external collaboration with clients, we experience an interesting dynamic resulting from the occasional mixing of roles. It can happen that elements of the PMO function overlap with those of the Scrum Master or other project roles. This mixing of roles means that the Project Management Office (PMO) is often not given comprehensive responsibility from the customer's perspective. Instead, the activity is focussed on specific supporting tasks, such as moderating meetings and taking minutes - essential tasks that are nevertheless often regarded as subordinate.

Yet they are of critical importance to ensure that decisions are documented in a comprehensible manner and communication channels are clearly defined. The PMO therefore also helps customers to bring structure and order to project work, which is a basic prerequisite for any successful project. The Project Management Office (PMO) is therefore critical to success.

Internally, the PMO also plays an indispensable role that goes far beyond background support. Its central tasks include not only the onboarding of new employees, where we ensure smooth integration into ongoing projects, but also prudent contract management. The Project Management Office (PMO) plays a key role in drafting and coordinating contracts and monitors the process to ensure that these contracts are signed on time and correctly by all parties involved.

Another crucial area in which the PMO has internal responsibility is controlling. Here we create precise performance reports that serve as the basis for invoicing the services provided. Through continuous communication with the customer about the status of the performance records, the PMO team ensures that transparent and comprehensible invoicing takes place and that payment for the services provided is secured. These tasks illustrate how the Project Management Office (PMO), through its commitment and expertise in controlling and contract management, makes a significant contribution to financial success and to building trust with the customer.

Potential of the role

A Project Management Officer often brings valuable strengths to a project, particularly through the overview of the entire project and the interaction of numerous stakeholders. Through regular dialogue with various project participants, Project Management Officers gain insight into all relevant aspects and developments that are important for the success of the project. If they are given the opportunity to take on more responsibility and contribute their expertise, they can realise their full potential.

A Project Management Officer can achieve significant efficiency gains and minimise project risks through process optimisation and standardisation. Effective resource management enables optimal allocation and utilisation of resources, while strong risk management identifies and minimises these at an early stage. Quality assurance and continuous improvement are supported by robust quality management. They also ensure transparency through accurate reporting and monitoring, which promotes informed decision-making.

In addition, PMOs can contribute to the further development of project teams by organising workshops and support changes in the project environment through effective change management. They help ensure that projects are aligned with the organisation's strategic goals and encourage innovation and creativity within the team. Strong stakeholder management by the PMO contributes to the satisfaction and commitment of everyone involved.


By giving the Project Management Office (PMO) more trust and freedom, project managers can develop innovative approaches and create real added value for the project. It is therefore worth rethinking the role of the PMO and promoting collaboration on an equal footing. In this way, PMOs can fully utilise their extensive skills and potential and contribute to the success of the entire project.

Is your current project already being supported by a project management office? Then consciously enter into dialogue with them and ask for their ideas on how to optimise processes and use their strategic overview to successfully drive projects forward. Your Project Management Officers are ready to utilise their knowledge and skills - give them the chance to do so. Create new perspectives for effective project management together!

Would you like to find out more about exciting topics from the world of adesso? Then take a look at our previous blog posts.

Picture Kerstin Röhrle

Author Kerstin Röhrle

Kerstin Röhrle has been part of the adesso team since 2020 and specialises in project management and software quality assurance. Her experience mainly flows into projects for customers from the public sector, where she ensures clear structures and high software quality.

Picture Sophia Cönen

Author Sophia Cönen

Sophia Cönen is a Senior Consultant in the public sector at adesso. She has experience in project management, change management and requirements management and supports her customers in mastering complex challenges and implementing sustainable change.

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