Governance Pain Points and How to Overcome Them

For the past two weeks, we have been focusing a lot on governance, as we know this is a hot topic for many organisations.

We have been posting on our LinkedIn group each day the pain points in governance and how to tackle them. Click here to join our LinkedIn Group to keep up to date with industry trends, advice, and opportunities for you to develop yourself in your PMO.

Governance plays a vital role in guiding the strategic direction, decision-making processes, and day-to-day project management. However, there are many governance issues within project management that can significantly impact the success and efficiency of project delivery. The good news is, the PMO can offer a set of robust services in governance that can help to over these issues.

Like all good PMOs and PMO professionals, part of the role is being aware of new best practice guidance which exists in PPM and understanding what the benefits are, and how it might be useful for your organisation.

The Project, Programme and Portfolio Governance guidance, published by TSO, is quickly becoming a must-read for PMO professionals. In this article we take a look at some of the most common pain points and how the PMO can use the guidance to help the organisation overcome them.

Here are some common governance issues that organisations may face:


Too much control and red tape on projects?Project Governance

This is a common one for many organisations – feeling the pain of too much control and red tape around projects and delivery?

It’s a classic: processes and bureaucracy bog down projects. In larger organisations, especially those with a heavy emphasis on governance and compliance, this overemphasis on control and red tape can throttle the agility of project delivery, slow down decision-making, and frustrate everyone involved.

Getting the balance right between the necessary oversight and maintaining project momentum is key, but it’s a tricky one for sure.

The PMO can certainly help in areas such as streamlining some of the processes, clearer roles and responsibilities, more empowerment to the project teams. The new guidance outlines 10 different principles which help you to think about the component parts of governance and how best to pinpoint where to start in making improvements.



Issues not getting resolved? Decisions taking too long?Governance problems in project management

Another common problem in project management – perhaps it’s a fear of making the wrong decision, a lack of clear authority on who should make the decision, or perhaps it’s a case of too many cooks spoiling the broth.

Effective governance is core to resolving this and the latest best practice (which should have been written years ago!) is helping practitioners think about governance at project, programme, and portfolio levels.

Governance principles around clear roles and responsibilities is a key one here, and the PMO can help to not only draft those sections of the governance frameworks but also provide guidance on how people perform their role and responsbilities.

The new two-day course, available internationally, is now available at PMO Learning, with a special focus on the PMO responsibilities in governance. Check it out here.


Sponsors not properly engaged in their role?PMOs Supporting Sponsors

This is a topic that frequently comes up in discussions about project failure and in the PMO community, we’re often talking about better ways to help this situation.

The new best practice guidance Project, Programme, and Portfolio Governance from P3GQA specifically focuses on sponsors and SROs and how they can be better supported in their roles.

Is this a pain point in your organisation? Has your PMO started thinking about the support it can offer to sponsors?


Business cases are not used consistently

Another biggy in the world of project management and PMO – business cases not being used consistently, sometimes not at all.

No clear objectives, direction, and justification leading to misaligned priorities and resources – we might all just pack up and leave before even starting the project!

Governance is not just about mandating a business case it’s also about establishing a culture of accountability.

The new best practice guidance – Project, Programme, and Portfolio Governance – launched in 2022, has quickly gained popularity by project professionals because it’s the first time a spotlight has been placed on governance – a missing piece of the project jigsaw has slotted into place.


There’s a disconnect between board and project team.PPM Governance and How the PMO Can Support Communication

Can the PMO help with this governance pain point?

The board might have strategic goals or a vision that isn’t fully conveyed to the teams managing the projects. Similarly, project teams may see firsthand challenges and opportunities that aren’t clearly communicated up the ladder.

Clearly, communication has a part to play and PPM.

Governance frameworks that include a focus on that plus alignment of strategic objectives and projects are needed.

The PMO has a role to play in communications, decision-support, process around the framework and reporting to name a few.



How to Crack Governance Pain Points

Learning about the best practice and principles that underpin it.The P3G Course Available from PMO Learning


The new best practice – Project, Programme, and Portfolio Governance – has enabled PMO professionals who have this remit to learn about the 10 principles that underpin it. PMO Learning have the 2-day course available if you or your team are interested in learning about the new guidance. The good news is, all our trainers here at PMO Learning are experienced PMO practitioners as well as excellent trainers.


Dig deeper into governance in PPM.

If you examine the project management training and education that exists, you’ll notice that for such a big area like governance, there isn’t an awful lot covered.

That’s why we’re behind the P3GQA best practice – Project, Programme, and Portfolio Governance – and the depth it goes to. Perfect for PMO professionals who want to provide a robust service, support and guidance to their organisation.


Your organisation is depending on the PMO

PMO TrainingOne of the key roles of the PMO is making sure the organisation is aware of new best practices, which can help overcome some of its pain points in project and programme delivery.

The PMO is forever scanning outside the organisation to see if there is something that can give their business an edge.

If your PMO offers governance-related services, it’s time to review the latest governance best practices and see if they can help your organisation.


Addressing these governance issues requires a concerted effort to establish clear governance structures, effective communication channels, robust decision-making processes, and proactive risk management practices within the PMO. Additionally, fostering a culture of collaboration, accountability, and continuous improvement can help mitigate governance issues and enhance the overall effectiveness of the PMO in supporting the successful delivery of projects.

The Project, Programme and Portfolio Governance (P3G) course provides the knowledge and understanding necessary to design, implement and operate effective and efficient governance arrangements for a project or programme, or your organisation’s entire change portfolio.


Understanding the new Project, Programme and Portfolio Governance best practice

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