Paradigm Shift | Project Management Magazine Spring 2021

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INNOVATIONS AND INSIGHTS

PROJECT MANAGEMENT OFFICES NEED TO BE ON THE SUSTAINABILITY FRONTLINE

WE’VE BEEN TALKING ABOUT SUSTAINABILITY FOR DECADES AND THE GLOBAL CONSENSUS IS FINALLY SHIFTING, WITH STANFORD SOCIAL INNOVATION REVIEW RESEARCH SHOWING NINE OUT OF TEN CEOS BELIEVE SUSTAINABILITY IS CRITICAL TO FUTURE SUCCESS. YET WHY HAS THERE BEEN SO LITTLE ACTION AND HOW CAN THE PROJECT MANAGEMENT OFFICE HELP CHANGE THAT?

(Source: Canva)

As the strategic and standardisation arm of the business, the Project Management Office (PMO) plays a critical role in the success of sustainability efforts in businesses as they help define, update, and maintain the practices and processes that enable strategic success. 14

If strategic success is linked to sustainability, the PMOs job is to create the right conditions for sustainability to flourish throughout the entire project life cycle, from project selection all the way down to everyday project processes. Picking the right projects with the right criteria and ensuring they are executed with the right processes was always the task of the PMO. However, what now constitutes as right is no longer purely economically motivated, but social and environmentally motivated too.