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Building on the Foundation

Course Description

Since PMOs began to appear in organizations, academic researchers and project management practitioners have been asking how to best structure PMOs in terms of services, roles, governance, culture, and leadership styles to provide maximum sustainable benefit. This in turn drives the perceived value of PMOs across the organization. The problem is that majority of recommendations to date have created confusion and resulted in piecemeal approaches. The problem is that less than 33% of PMOs reach the full potential (PMI®, 2013), which indicates a limited understanding in how PMOs should be defined not only at the project, program, and portfolio levels but also what they do, how they do it, and their configurations that optimally support the organizational needs of today, and tomorrow. AIPMO and its partners’ experience confirms that the vast majority of PMOs are only offering about a third of the PMO services they should be offering. High-performing PMOs are more than three times as likely as their low-performing peers to reach their full potential in contributing business value to their organizations (PMI®, 2013). This course brings together the latest in academic research and expert practices from the international experts who have also contributed to international standards in the domains of PMOs, projects, programs, and portfolios. The IPMO-P certification will ensure that you have the competencies to bring your PMO into the high-performing PMO category. The course covers topics of strategy formulation and execution, success factors, success criteria, PMOs and their services, assessment of the current PMO setups in terms of SWOT, and then a roadmap to strategically design and implement a PMO using an integrated approach to ensure PMO alignment with organizational objectives. The content of AIPMO’s Body of Knowledge is covered, which will comprise of a series of books covering PMO Principles, Portfolio, Program and Project Principles, PMO Techniques and Tools, PMO Services and Capabilities, plus references to other books.

AIPMO's "PMO Services and Capabilities" Book

This book is for every PMO professional who would like to understand how to define and deliver a PMO service strategy. Big part from the course material is from this book and the questions in the exam as well. It is highly recommended for all of the participants to have the book before the course start.




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What We Do

As always, students grow with us!





Teaching Approach

The training approach includes




Team exercises


Group discussions


Case study


Personal coaching



Your instructor: Saj Minhas

Principal Consultant, MA, PMP, PRINCE2, P30, MSP, IPMO-E ACE Instructor

Saj is a PMO Principal Consultant, with 16 years of experience in PMO/Programme Management and with demonstrable track record in the design and establishment of PMOs; project, program, and portfolio management; and education and training. He has helped major service providers across the UK, Europe and the Middle East to successfully formulate and execute their strategic plans. He has experience in building/mobilising Transformation Management Offices (TMO), as a subject lead advisor, consultant, and trainer to c-suite executives, who ensure the delivery of benefits is understood by all stakeholders and is delivered utilising all
He is Full Member of Project Management Institute (PMI); Full Member of Institute for Turnaround & Transformation (IFT); Expert Member of the Institute of Supply chain Management (ISCM); PMO Coach for the welfare to work programme – South West London & Georges Mental Health Trust.

• Master of Science - Project Management (In progress), University of Salford, Manchester, UK
• Master of Arts – Strategic Management
University of Derby, Derby, England, UK
• BA Business Studies (2 years), Southbank University, London, UK
• Chartered Management Institute - Level 7 in Strategic Management & Leadership, Organisational Change
• PMI, Managing Successful Programmes; Prince2 & P30 Practitioner
• International Project Management Officer Expert (IPMO-E), ACE Instructor

Contributions to leading practice:
• Full Member of Project Management Institute (PMI)
• Full Member of Institute for Turnaround & Transformation (IFT)
• Expert Member of the Institute of Supply chain Management (ISCM)
• PMO Coach for the welfare to work programme – South West London & Georges Mental Health Trust.


Contributions to leading practice


  • Course outline
  • Introductions
  • Certification path, Different levels of exam & Sample foundation questions
  • Definition of lifecycle
  • The organizational context of AIPMO’s strategic lifecycle framework
  • AIPMO’s lifecycle framework’s contents and PMO capabilities
  • AIPMO’s document map for PMO creation and P3 record-keeping
  • AIPMO’s body of knowledge, 22 service domains
  • Module retrospective
  • Mapping mission (organization purpose) and environmental factors to strategy
  • Organization’s governance hierarchy - a driver of PMO setup
  • Implementing strategic objectives in portfolios, programs, and projects
  • Portfolio program and project level as a driver of PMO setup
  • Module retrospective
  • Identify, record, and characterize PMO stakeholders
  • Stakeholders define success criteria and provide success factors
  • Module retrospective
  • Project’s challenges as a PMO set-up driver
  • Applying principles over procedures as challenge rises
  • (Some) Project control choices - Foundation refresher
  • PMO charter - align with driving factors, new PMO need and charter
  • Gathering people’s needs for services and service levels
  • Module retrospective
  • Translating PMO drivers to the PMO’s strategy & management plans
  • Translating PMO scope to PMO design and service procedures
  • Competences (skills) and tools to deliver PMO services
  • Technique and tool (software and non-software) selection and deployment
  • PMO resource management and sourcing the PMO staff
  • PMO headcount and PMO's resource needs or capacity constraints
  • PMO business justification  (balancing design with costs)
  • Module retrospective
  • Why pilot the PMO’s services
  • PMO's day-to-day cadence helps drive project progress
  • Determining & reporting status (project and PMO)
  • PMO as project document library and knowledge managers
  • Continuous process improvement
  • Module retrospective
  • Drivers of change
  • Retiring a PMO service
  • Transforming a PMO service
  • Process steps to retire temporary and permanent PMO
  • PMO transformation
  • Module Retrospective
  • Project and project management success
  • PMO success
  • PMO capability maturity metrics
  • Link between PMO capability maturity and PMO success
  • Module retrospective
  • Theories in academic research and practitioner use
  • Definitions of an eponymous law, theory, and phenomenon
  • What comes next in your career development
  • Career options and AIPMO qualification paths
  • Module retrospective

Frequently Asked Questions

You Ask, We Answer

These three certifications are part of the PMO core certifications. IPMO-F (Foundation) is for the PMO and project team members and covers topics around working in a PMO, and also working in a project team. It covers the lower part of the AIPMO Strategic Lifecycle framework.

IPMO-P (Practitioner) is for the PMO managers, project managers, and senior PMO and project team members. It covers topics on how to identify the need for a PMO and design, and how to justify and build a PMO and its services.

IPMO-E (Expert) is not for everyone. It is the top-level certification for PMO directors and consultants who are managing, consulting, or designing enterprise PMO topologies and PMO Service topologies.

Each of the certification categories serve a difference purpose. The first category “PMO Core Certifications” shows that you have the competencies to design and build a service-orientated PMO with services that are needed by your project community. At the top-level (Expert) certification, you will have to show that you have the competencies to design and build one or more PMOs (called PMO topologies) within an integrated PMO Services topology. The second category of courses, called “Foundational certifications,” comprise of three certifications that are needed by everyone irrespective of whether you are a PMO or project team member or a PM/O director. The foundational courses are the techniques and tools of a trade, so they are needed by everyone including project professionals. The third category of certifications is called the “Specialist” certifications because they directly relate to the ability to offer PMO services. If a PMO service is planned, then the PMO needs to have the capability to offer them. There are over 20 specialist courses at the time of writing. These courses are also needed by project team members.

For now, it is best to ask one of our professionals. You can either call or chat online. They will be able to provide you expert advice to plan and advance your career.

Short answer, yes. There are bundles shown on the website, but you can also call to ask if you can get a special discount. If you join as a group to the course, then this will also be taken into consideration.

Who should attend

  • PMO directors/PMO managers 
  • Project/Program Management Professional Consultants (involved in projects and/or organizational change) 
  • Project/program/portfolio managers with expertise in PMOs Experienced PMO core team

Key takeaways

Understand the importance of a strategic PMO Lifecycle framework to design and run PMO services to achieve maximum sustainable benefits

Describe the different roles of PMOs across different levels of the organization

Workshop experience in applying the Strategic PMO Lifecycle framework to your PMO with an aligned set of PMO services that address your organization’s challenges

Gain experience in establishing the mandate for PMO implementations

Understand the drivers of PMO change and how to see the signs

Understand PMO success and how it is measured

Understand the similarities and differences between organizational project management maturity and PMO management maturity

Understand your own PMO improvement plan

Learn new techniques and tools never used before in the PMO arena


  • 3 years plus experience in project and/or program management 
  • 3 years plus experience as a PMO member or higher, i.e., PMO manager 
  • A formal PM certification such as PMP®, or Prince II®, or IPMA® (Levels C or higher, i.e., B or A) Ideally IPMO-F, SC-IPMO, TT-IPMO 
  • Educated at degree level or similar


The online exam is run by AIPMO, and moderated by a proctor from AIPMO at the end of the course.

  • Open book exam, 75 multiple choice questions 
  • Duration: 1 hour 30 minutes 

Attendees are notified by email of the results of the exam

This is one of my best trainings that I ever had. I feel that its practical I feel its hitting my areas that I want to improve. There were many ideas that I can apply and share it with my colleagues. Again this is a practical course that has increased my knowledge. 

Salahuddin Iskanderani
Project Engineer, Atmata

The course was really Insightful. Some of the concepts for setting up a PMO were new and I liked the different approach from everyone, the different maturity, different ways people execute aspects of PMO. Now I really have the reason to go to the management and advocate for certain aspects of service capability, in terms of capacity since now I got the literature and I know how to list the things in very structured way. 

Donald Chinyanga
PMO Head, FBC Holdings Limited

I enjoyed attending the IPMO-P course and particularly liked case studies. We were guided by amazing instructor, and I found his tips particularly helpful. I also liked the framework and found it very useful! 

Ben Watson
Senior PMO Manager, John Lewis Partnership

The IPMO-P course was great. It was great to interact with so many people around the world. I found the case studies particularly helpful. It was good to have participants from different countries and different fields.

Nacereddine El Hadi Ait Belkacem
Cluster PMO Director, Edge

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