Project Management as a Service is not without its risks. Unlike some other “as a service” offerings such as Software as a Service and Platform as a Service, with PMaaS you are buying in the help of people. While people may be very effective project managers, they may not necessarily be a good cultural fit for the organization. Some proponents of PMaaS argue that when these solutions are good, then the provider will take cultural factors into account and place an individual that is a good fit, but this seems at best, a very complex undertaking that could be prone to failure. This aside, people working within the culture already are likely to have a better idea of the “way things work around here” and how to get things done. With this in mind, in some cases, it might very well be preferable to gain the required project management competencies in-house.
Key Considerations for PMaaS Use
There are some recommendations that can be made for the use of project management as a service in any organization. In the first instance, it is essential to be clear about your own requirements from the very start. Come up with a wish list of what you need from your PMaaS provider, and vet these companies against this. Secondly, it is important that the people brought in are a good cultural fit – so check with your potential providers what they do to achieve this. Thirdly, contracts should be underscored with KPIs within the service level agreement, so that the contract can be carefully managed.
Some PMaaS solution providers offer a contractual agreement whereby you can retain a certain percentage of the monthly service cost, pending the KPIs being met. If the PMaaS provider meets the KPIs, they get the money, but if not, you retain it instead. This type of arrangement can be beneficial because it helps keep the PMaaS provider on their toes, making sure that they do indeed meet the KPIs.
Suggested Read: Common challenges in project management
It is worth noting that PMaaS is a relatively new idea. As such, there is not a lot of evidence to show either way whether it is effective or not. Following the recommendations above will likely help you avoid any of the major problems that may arise, but you should certainly be aware and on the lookout for the possible drawbacks, just in case.
PMaaS has the potential to solve the age-old problem of project management resourcing and skills within organizations. The service may be cost-effective due to the ability of the organization to scale resource up and down as needed. Yet, the concept is unproven, and there are risks that cannot be overlooked, such as corporate culture challenges. If you do your due diligence when selecting a PMaaS partner, you may minimize some of the risks involved in utilizing these types of services.