A project office is a software management tool that is used to help a manager deal with the different processes and issues under his control. This is also where the standards of the different processes are laid out in a formal document to be implemented.
One way of looking at what a project office program will do is by considering it as the foundation for the standards that your business model is run by. Depending on what industry you are in, it is the relevant factor to which set of standards you need to follow.
The reason for standardization with a project office is because of the different practices that were being used in the business world. One of the compliance standards that are widely accepted is the ISO system. This system simply states that you do what you say you are doing and document all of what you do. This is extremely simplified, but the meaning is there.
The management of project office software can generally be categorized in three major groups. There is the enterprise project management office, the organizational project management office, and the special purpose project management office. Each one is made for a specific purpose and need in the business world.
For most practical purposes, the project office will help your project manager with the necessary checks they will need to ensure all the necessary processes are in place for the business to function efficiently. A check list that could be followed should consist of identifying the correct location of the PMO team. Then, make sure the proper infrastructure is in place so the system can run efficiently.
Also part of the project office check list should be the allocation of the necessary equipment and tools that will be necessary to perform the required tasks. The roles and responsibilities should also be assigned and documented.
There is a great deal of information and responsibility that the project office can help your business and the managers with. The first step towards utilizing this type of program would be to decide on which one fits your business model best.