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What is P3O

P3O® guidance (Portfolio, Programme and Project Offices) provides a decision enabling/delivery support structure for all change within an organisation. This guidance – aligned to OGC's PRINCE2, MSP, and M_o_R – brings together in one place a set of principles, processes and techniques to facilitate effective portfolio, programme and project management through enablement, challenge and support structures.

A Portfolio, Programme and Project Office model will equip an organization with the structures, tools and techniques it needs to ensure it has the right programmes and projects in place and ensures consistent delivery of programmes and projects across the organisation.

This may be provided through a single permanent office which may exist under several different names e.g. PMO, Portfolio Office, Centre of Excellence, Enterprise or Corporate Programme Office. It may otherwise be provided through a linked set of offices (portfolio office, programme offices, project offices), both permanent (enabling/supporting business objectives and consistency of delivery) and temporary (enabling/supporting specific programmes and projects), providing a mix of central and localized services.


  • Increases the project management effectiveness of the organization through appropriate support structures.
  • Bridges the gap between strategy/policy makers and the project delivery arm of the organisation, ensuring that the portfolio is aligned to the strategy and resources optimized for the scope.
  • Facilitates the identification and realization of business outcomes and benefits via programmes.
  • Better resource management thanks to the predictability of delivery in terms of time and cost.
  • Facilitates the visibility of progresses, issues, problems and failures.
  • A common language and central standards reduce start up time and leads to consistency of approach and delivery.
  • Facilitates a faster and appropriate decision making thanks to a structured governance enabling clarity of decision making, escalation rules and routes.
  • Enables business growth as well as sustaining operational delivery through change by reducing the programme and project delivery timescales and by identifying the bottlenecks - resource, money etc.


 The guidance is explained in the following key elements:

  • Models and Tailoring
  • Tool and Techniques
  • Roles


If you want to become a Registered Practitioner, you MUST sit the Foundation Examination and then the Practitioner Examination, in that order.

You can sit both exams in the same week or even day, or you can split them and sit them months (or even years!) apart. 

  • The Foundation is the first of the two P3O Examinations you are required to pass to become a P3O Practitioner. This level is aiming to measure whether a candidate would be able to act as an informed member of a P3O
  • The Practitioner level is aiming to measure whether a candidate could manage or work in a component of a P3Othey and has a full understanding of how to justify, build and manage a P3O.



Links and downloads

Scheduled open courses Corporate training P3O Frequently Asked Questions P3O Download Area