The world faced a unique economic challenge for businesses of all sizes in 2021. It affected staffing, technology, customer base, and where everyone is working from. It even caused previously reliable resources to decide to sit on the sidelines for the short term or long term. Suddenly, great resources who would previously be working on projects were now at home staying safe from a virus that overtook a nation and a world.
This may even become the norm once the Covid storm blows over if it does. In the meantime, remote work as a project portfolio manager (and as a project manager) has been impacted so here is a quick guide as to how to ensure successful remote project portfolio management (PPM) in 2022.
The right stakeholders
First, to be a successful project delivery organization in 2022, the project management office (PMO) will need the right people to drive the projects and make up the project teams. Where that happens will depend on the organization but what we have all learned is that the new normal is likely here to stay. And most surveys are showing that up to 75% or more of tech and skilled resources still want to work from home rather than head back into the office. Will that change soon? Not likely since it hasn’t changed for two years. So find the right people who prove to adjust and adapt to the times, since you know that you are going to utilize remote resources and virtual teams.
The right project portfolio management solution
Next, to be successful the project management leadership is going to need the right project portfolio management (PPM) solution that will contain real-time data points on the cloud. This way, all information shared will be true no matter where the project manager is located in the world at the time that they are working.
At the same time, the solution will help align all projects with the organization’s goals and mission and technology support roadmap. The last thing an organization wants to do is take on projects and support projects and technology that are not part of its near-term or long-term solution delivery roadmap. It can lead to project failures and lost customers.
In addition, artificial intelligence (AI) is already impacting project management today, so project managers should be using a project management tool that will allow them to keep up with the digital transformation taking over the world. Expect it to be part of the best PM and PPM tools moving forward in 2022 and beyond. For projects, it can help with decision making, prioritizing, staying focused on the right tech, taking on the right projects, adding the right resources, and producing the best reports possible.
The right PMO leadership
A project portfolio management infrastructure or PMO needs to have the right leadership in place for 2022. More is going to be expected from our PM delivery teams as customers’ budgets tighten but needs may be expanding after a very uncertain and non-standard 2021 pandemic year. Part of having the right leadership means having the basic soft skills found in any leader–knowing how to inspire, communicate, uplift employees, build trust and loyalty, avoid tribalism, overcome emotional issues with themselves and their team members, and so on.
But in addition to all of that, remote leadership roles are also going to need the right tool(s) that will help them:
- Have clarity as to what their goals are so that they can translate them well to their team leaders
- Easily delegate resources, visually track and monitor their teams’ activities, and manage time and budget effectively
- Always be in the know of what is happening in their project portfolio without having to call on meetings, filter through emails, or jump from solution to solution to try to try to map out the big picture of what’s impacting what
- Be able to make necessary changes to plans at the right time
- Instantly communicate with stakeholders about specific project-related items without having to search or dig for information
Success happens because we follow processes and procedures and improve as we proceed and learn lessons along the way. With rapid changes taking place since the pandemic, we all need to adjust our processes and procedures accordingly.
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