What a PMO CV should say

What should your PMO CV say – it’s all well and good telling us you support / manage / set up PMOs in your CV but do you give the recruiter or hiring manager enough information for them to get a feel for your exposure? Often I am sent CVs from PMO professionals asking for feedback and although basically it is well written, there are huge gaps leaving me wanting more detail. Recruiters and hiring managers are unlikely to pick up the phone to ask you questions when they already have an inbox full of applications, they simply move on to the next CV.

What do we want to know? Here are a few points to consider:

  • The PMO itself – what kind of PMO is it? Is it corporate level, satellite (department based, permanent for say IT), or temporary (set up for a specific programme and disbanded once the programme has delivered)
  • How big is it? Some PMOs are just one person, others run into 20’s to much larger
  • How mature is the PMO, are we talking rather new and currently creating & embedding structures, enterprise level or somewhere in between
  • How many programmes and / or projects feed into the PMO
  • What are the programmes / projects which are being supported
  • What level of support is offered – purely admin or as intended, consultants to the project management team
  • Who does the PMO report into – is it an interface between project management and the senior management team

As a PMO manager or consultant have you addressed these points?

  • What type of PMO manager are you – do you set up PMOs and move on to new assignments once you have implemented structures and handed over to someone else to manage
  • Do you have a PMO tool kit of templates which you can adapt for business needs
  • Are you all about process or pragmatic in your approach to implementing structures
  • Do you pick up existing PMOs and mange going forward as opposed to setting them up
  • What is your key specialism – do you look to address overarching business needs and work on communications
  • Are you a coach / trainer to project managers

These are few areas which require consideration when putting together a CV; too many times I have seen CVs which list a lot of bullets such as:

  • Risk & Issue Management
  • Stakeholder Mapping
  • Change Management
  • Planning

Put like this – it doesn’t tell the reviewer a great deal and does tend to read like a job description not a CV, think about adding in some context and really adding some meat to the bones. It is easy to assume that others will know all about your role at XXX plc but the reality is that we don’t, by taking time to think about how you may describe to others what you do and your environment you can really make a difference to your CV.

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