Project Management Institute Announces 2015 PMO of the Year Award Finalists


Project Management Institute (PMI) today announced the three finalists for the 2015 PMO of the Year Award. This prestigious prize honors a project management office (PMO) that has demonstrated superior organizational project management abilities, adding value to its organization through its support of successful strategic initiatives and achieving a positive and clear impact on business results.

The three finalists are:

Navy Federal Credit Union Vienna, Virginia, USA

As a trusted financial institution serving the military and their families, Navy Federal Credit Union oversees a portfolio of 150 IT projects that serve the needs of customers while addressing compliance requirements and tapping into new tech trends. One of those projects had the goal of giving customers uninterrupted access to their bank accounts with instantly issued debit cards. Beyond slashing a 10- to 14-day delivery window to a matter of minutes, the upgrade promised a real ROI: Instantly issued cards are used faster than mailed cards and have a 40 percent higher activation rate.

Rolling out the instant card system across Navy Federal’s 265 branches worldwide required prioritizing resources across the organization and securing executive support. The PMO also had to prep global branch teams to introduce the new tech, which meant training more than 3,000 employees on an accelerated six-month timeline. The PMO played a critical role by acting as the glue that held the effort together. It relied on standardized processes and a common sense approach to generate predictable and repeatable results. Since 2010, Navy Federal Credit Union’s PMO has grown from five people to more than 120. The growth mirrors that of the credit union’s portfolio: There has been a 42 percent increase in the number of annual projects from 2012 to 2014. And as the PMO continues to mature, it has broadened its focus to become more of a strategic partner across the business.

Symcor Inc.Mississauga, Ontario, Canada

Four years ago, Symcor’s project success rate stood at 55 percent. Satisfaction was plummeting—and even Symcor’s board of directors had lost faith in the company’s ability to deliver projects. Yet despite the risks to client retention and new business growth, the organization—which provides payment processing services to financial companies—was still hesitant to establish a PMO. Stakeholders worried it would add overhead without a measurable ROI. So the nascent PMO team focused on proving its value. It trained, coached and mentored the company’s project managers and developed a living project framework that teams could adapt to each initiative.

It didn’t take long for the PMO to make its case. By 2013, Symcor’s project success rate had jumped to 96 percent—with less than 0.5 percent of the organization’s overall gross revenue going to the PMO. The PMO was also delivering increased project consistency across the company’s lines of business. These results are borne, in part, from the PMO’s strong emphasis on due diligence. When a project begins, the PMO funds 10 percent of the project estimate, which restricts efforts to essential high-level activities. The PMO also provides ongoing oversight through bi-weekly steering committee meetings and post-implementation reviews. Since the implementation of the PMO, Symcor’s client satisfaction has surged by 20 percent, paving the way for even more opportunities.

Ticketmaster International London, England

With a budget of more than US$2 million, Ticketmaster International’s PMO needed a better way to prioritize its mission-critical initiatives. Product roadmaps and requests were often left hanging in limbo. So the PMO asked each project team to build a business case using a template it provided. This allowed teams to show where they needed more resources—which led to accelerated delivery. Standardization also helped Ticketmaster’s project teams manage multiple dependencies that had previously caused delays. Using resource modeling and a web-based tool known internally as the Dependency Master, the PMO provided project managers the tools to address risks and manage change by accessing information about dependencies in real time. The visual system provides more transparency and control from a project level, which also speeds up the overall delivery process. As a result, the incidence of projects getting blocked because of an unforeseen or badly managed dependency has dropped from critical to almost nothing.

The 2015 PMO of the Year Award will be presented at the 2015 PMO Symposium, 11 November in Phoenix, Arizona, USA. Register and reserve your seat at

2016 PMI Professional Awards Call for Nominations

The call for nominations for 2016 PMO of the Year, and other PMI Professional Awards, opens on 1 November, 2015. Visit to apply and access complete award information, including nomination guidelines and FAQs.

About Project Management Institute (PMI)

Project Management Institute (PMI) is the world's leading association for those who consider project, program or portfolio management their profession. Founded in 1969, PMI delivers value for more than three million professionals working in nearly every country in the world through global advocacy, collaboration, education and research. We advance careers, improve organizational success and further mature the project management profession through globally-recognized standards, certifications, communities, resources, tools, academic research, publications, professional development courses and networking opportunities. As part of the PMI family, creates online global communities that deliver more resources, better tools, larger networks and broader perspectives. Visit us at,, and on Twitter @PMInstitute.

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