Transforming a PMO Through Managed Services

A Managed Services Case Study

North Highland helped a multinational mining organization transform its IT Project Management Office (PMO) through a managed services framework. This enabled the mining company to more effectively manage workforce costs and better initiate, plan, and execute projects. North Highland delivered value across every area of the IT PMO, solving the resource management problems of the present while fostering sustainable improvement for the future.

Client Situation

The IT PMO of a leading global mining operation was struggling to balance functional performance, achievement, and growth with intense pressures to manage overall workforce and contractor costs. The continual need to provide heightened oversight of delivery was detracting from the PMO’s ability to focus on strategy.

A lack of resources, coupled with inconsistent project management processes and frameworks, made it difficult for the IT PMO to move projects through the initiation and planning phases. The absence of a comprehensive resource management tool further exacerbated these challenges. The organization turned to North Highland for help.

Our Approach

Using a managed services framework, North Highland focused on building capacity, capability, and community to create sustainable improvement and enable an engaged, strategic PMO equipped for performance and reliable delivery within specific capabilities.

North Highland worked hand-in-hand with members of the organization’s PMO to quickly scale the mining organization’s team with new hires that were experienced, passionate about project management, and ready to hit the ground running. By working as part of the organization’s team, we were able to extend the PMO’s resources, freeing the PMO to focus on strategy and delivery rather than solely on resource management.

Our team also laid the foundation of continuous improvement by implementing project management methods, processes, and tools designed to bolster the organization’s PMO capabilities and grow its maturity over time. A formal assessment of the PMO resulted in a roadmap and the establishment of metrics to track performance against KPIs and service-level agreements. The team also put in place a service delivery manager to ensure that projects met deadlines and expectations while reducing overhead.

Recognizing that engaged employees offer the most value, the North Highland team also worked to create purpose-driven communities. Weekly engagement sessions brought the PMO team together to discuss the craft of project management, and coaching, lunch and learns, and a robust program of ongoing training opportunities helped build project managers’ and business analysts’ skillsets.

Value Delivered

From the inception of the initial idea to implementation, North Highland empowered a global mining corporation’s IT PMO to focus on core operations while removing the complications that were constraining operational processes.

North Highland was able to reduce yearly project management spend by over 25% and generated the potential for over $5M in value created through better initiation, planning, and execution of projects.

Through value-added managed services that increased the PMO’s capacity, capability, and community, North Highland was able to measurably improve operational maturity over the contract lifetime and lay the groundwork for continuous improvement.

North Highland saved a global mining operation's IT PMO 25% in labor while creating inroads for over $5 million in project value.