CIO Council group recommends a federal project management office

The CIO Council's Project Management Working Group this month will make recommendations to the Office of Management and Budget on how to further establish the project management profession in government.

At the top of the list: Create a federal project management office. The office would collect and disseminate best practices and establish project management standards, said Emory Miller, the General Services Administration's director of IT professional development.

The report will make four other suggestions:

  • Strengthen strategic planning processes by advocating that agencies measure performance and make sure agency senior officials understand the importance of project management.

  • Establish project management standards and advocate education.

  • Work with the Office of Personnel Management to create a project management job path and General Schedule series.

  • Add project management competencies to Senior Executive Service skill requirements.

  • 'Over the past couple of years, project management has grown to become a mature discipline,' Miller said today at a program management conference in Washington sponsored by E-Gov. 'This is an opportunity to take project management and layer it on the work we are doing today and apply it agency- and governmentwide.'

    The working group briefed the CIO Council's Workforce and Human Capital for IT Committee earlier this week and plans to detail the report to OMB later this month, Miller said.

    In addition to the recommendations, the report will describe seven core problems:

  • Lack of defined project management knowledge, values, behaviors and roles

  • Inadequate portfolio management practices that leave project managers unsure of the role a project plays within broader agency and mission objectives

  • Lack of resources, authority and accountability

  • Inconsistent project management methods practiced within agencies

  • Lack of professional identity for project managers because there is no federal job series

  • Lack of clear skill requirements and measures

  • Barriers to sharing project management talent within and among agencies.

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