The Three Roles of a Project Portfolio Management Office: the Impact on Portfolio Management Execution and Success

Barbara N. Unger / Hans Georg Gemuenden / Monique Aubry

Project portfolio management offices (PPMOs) are types of project management offices (PMOs) specialized in handling project portfolios as centralized units. Firms increasingly face management challenges from their project portfolios that they resolve by introducing such PPMOs. Hence PPMOs are phenomena that are demanded and applied in practice. Although there has been plenty of research on PMOs in general, a clear answer to the roles that PPMOs perform, as well as the existence and mode of a PPMO’s performance contribution remains open. A novel and significant contribution is made upon differentiating a coordinator, controller and supporter role of PPMOs and relating these to project portfolio management quality, a predictor for portfolio success. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first study to show significant positive effects of these roles of PPMOs on success.