What Is a PMO Director? Role, Responsibilities & Salary


PMO stands for project management office and it’s responsible for the project management standards in an organization. It can be a department in that organization or a group of professionals, either inside or outside the organization. Either way, it’s run by a PMO director.

There are different types of PMOs, all headed by a PMO director. The two others are the program management office and the portfolio management office. They all share similar responsibilities, but one deals with an organization’s project and the other deals with either a program, a group of related projects or a portfolio of projects.

What Is a PMO Director?

A PMO director is a senior-level position that takes ownership and is accountable for creating, organizing and implementing the strategies and business programs in an organization. They’re responsible for making sure that the related projects are completed on time and within budget.

The responsibilities of a PMO director are varied. They lead the strategic planning and project governance for the organization and define the project management methodologies that are used to manage those projects. They standardize best practices and oversee related business administration, risk management and change management.

Another important task given to PMO directors is managing and allocating resources across projects according to priorities, schedules and budgets. They’ll invest in project management software and archive projects for historical data that can be used when planning new initiatives.

To handle all these duties requires project management software that can efficiently and effectively manage projects. ProjectManager is award-winning project management software that gives PMO directors visibility into projects so they can allocate resources better. For example, our roadmap is a Gantt chart project view that shows all the projects in the PMO on one timeline. Use the roadmap view to track progress, even at the task level, and make insightful decisions about how to allocate resources across projects. Filter the view by project, client or customer and add as many columns as you need. Get started with ProjectManager for free today.

ProjectManager's roadmap
ProjectManager’s roadmap view gives you transparency across all your projects. Learn more

What Does a PMO Director Do?

A PMO director is an important project management role with many responsibilities. They’ll lead the analysis and rollout of the PMO tools that will plan, manage and track the projects under their purview. This includes any training that’s required.

Outside of having a knowledge of portfolio management software, the PMO director will come up with the strategy for the governance of the portfolio of projects, including the allocation of resources and the management of the individual project managers who are responsible for each of the many projects.

Monitoring the projects and the overall portfolio is also part of their responsibility. The PMO director must ensure that the projects in the portfolio comply with the project policies and standards of the organization.

A PMO director is also a leader. They’ll coach and mentor project managers and other project professionals as needed, sharing their knowledge and best practices for the betterment of the entire organization.

As a leader, the PMO director will also be responsible for hiring project staff and making sure they’re a good fit for the project objectives. This includes creating a PMO organization structure and coordinating project deliverables with project managers, analysts, market leads, regional directors and support contractors.

The PMO director sets up annual performance targets and reports and performance reviews as well as reports on performance and progress to the executive team. These reports will show the delivery of projects and programs is being done on time, within scope and on budget, all of which are also part of a PM director’s tasks.

They’ll work closely with the executive team to define project priorities, implement opportunities, address challenges and communicate project risks and opportunities. This includes leading quality assurance and performing post-mortems to learn from mistakes and make sure they’re not repeated.

Sample PMO Director Job Description

It’s clear that the PMO director has a lot of responsibilities. In order for you to clearly define these when seeking one for your organization, we’ve created a sample PMO director job description. It’s below and can be cut and pasted onto a job board. Feel free to customize as needed to best fit your needs and good luck finding the most qualified candidate.

PMO Role Description

Our company is looking for a PMO director to join our team. Our project management office is set up to ensure projects are executed effectively and delivered on time and within budget. The PMO director will be responsible for developing and maintaining the high standards we expect and representing our brand to donors. They should bring their A-game every day, establishing best-in-class project management methodologies, standards and tools. They should have a track record of success. Our organization is established and has a long history in the industry. We offer a competitive pay and benefits package with some flexibility in terms of office hours.

PMO Director Duties and Responsibilities

  • Establish PMO role, create center of excellence that aligns with the Project Management Institute (PMI) guidelines, quality standards and company strategy
  • Implement efficiencies that meet or exceed the financial expectations established at project initiation
  • Develop and govern program and portfolio management processes, uses of dashboards, templates, keeping aligned with policies and metrics
  • Monitor projects, programs and portfolio to ensure compliance with project policies and standards as well as keeping to schedules, budgets and quality expectations
  • Manage project, program and portfolio deliverables and tasks
  • Coach and mentor team and share knowledge and best practices
  • Hire and manage PMO staff, including project, program and portfolio professionals, in line with project objectives
  • Coordinate deliverables with project managers, analysts, market leads, et al., while supporting contractors and reporting structure
  • Oversee project managers of all projects to make sure delivery of their projects is on time and within budget as well as meeting quality standards
  • Reports to executive team on progress and performance of PMO
  • Works with executive team to assess and decide on which proposals have the highest potential value, impact and strategic alignment
  • Identify project, program and portfolio priorities, deal with challenges and communicate project risks and opportunities

PMO Director Skills

  • Proven record managing teams and projects in our industry
  • Successfully manages project deliverables and keeps to timelines
  • Ability to identify sources of funding and business development opportunities
  • Expert knowledge of project and change management methodologies, techniques and processes
  • Able to manage budget, cost and profitability
  • Resource management skills and knowledge of tools
  • High-level communication, interpersonal skills and ability to cultivate and maintain relationships with project managers, teams, vendor and other stakeholders
  • Experience monitoring and evaluating projects, programs and portfolios
  • Teach and mentor small and large groups
  • Flexible, adaptable and resourceful
  • Demonstrated leadership ability and management of high-performing teams

PMO Director Education

  • Master’s degree in business administration or related field
  • Minimum of 10 years of project management experience preferred
  • PMP or PJMP certification is highly desired

PMO Director Average Salary

A PMO director can expect an average salary of $177,876 annually in the United States. That includes cash bonuses, commission, tips and profit sharing. A base salary average is more along the lines of $130,793 annually.

However, it’s important to note the range can run from $111,000 to $290,000 depending on the candidate’s skills and experience as well as the location of the job. Obviously, big cities are going to pay more as will larger, more established companies.

One should also think in terms of industry, as some will pay more than others. Demand is also a factor as companies struggle to attract qualified candidates who are willing to work in the office. Outside of salary, one should think about flexible working hours and other benefits that can make the position more attractive to potential candidates.

How ProjectManager Helps PMO Directors

Whoever you hire to fill the PMO director position they’re going to need project management software to do all the things you expect from them. ProjectManager is award-winning project management software with portfolio management features that make it a perfect fit for your organization. You can use our portfolio project management tools to see all your projects on our roadmap, which can show, hide or create all the columns you want, from budget to target date and more. You can even create custom folders in portfolio projects.

Get a High-Level View With Portfolio Dashboards

Whenever you want to get a high-level overview of the portfolio just toggle over to our portfolio dashboard and get real-time data on the health, tasks, progress, time, cost and workload. The easy-to-read graphs and charts help you evaluate your portfolio at a glance. You can customize your dashboard and there’s no time-consuming setup required as with lightweight project management software alternatives. Don’t waste time, we have the dashboard up and ready when you need it.

ProjectManager's portfolio dashboard
Use Customizable Reports for More Detail

When the real-time portfolio dashboard isn’t enough and you need to dig down deeper into the data, use our customizable reports. You can create a portfolio status report in a snap and even customize it to show only the data you want to see. For example, you can filter the portfolio status report to show only the remaining budget, percent complete and more. There are also reports on workload, variance and more. Each report can be filtered and shared in a variety of formats to keep the executive team updated.

ProjectManager's portfolio status report filter

Other portfolio management tools include resource management features, such as our color-coded workload chart. It’s an easy and effective way to track the progress and overall workload of teams across the many projects of your portfolio. You can reallocate resources right from the chart to balance workload and keep teams productive.

ProjectManager is online project management software that connects teams no matter where they are, in the office, on a job site or anywhere in between. Our tool allows users to share files, comment on the task level and much more to foster better collaboration. Join teams in companies as diverse as Avis, Nestle and Siemens who use our software to succeed. Get started with ProjectManager today for free.