Most PMOs I work with face the same problem: too many project requests and not enough time to do them all! I will admit, I’ve worked with one group that did not have this problem. They have plenty of money and were told that if it’s a worthwhile project, there’s ample funding and they can hire all the people they need. If you’re in that situation, no need to read on. Rest assured – the rest of us are envious!
But, if you’re like the other 99% of PMOs in the world, you need a way to manage this onslaught of potential work.
In the sales world, they have what’s known as the sales pipeline or sales funnel. This is a process whereby potential opportunities are matured, step by step, to fruition as a completed sale. Along the way, opportunities fall by the wayside. They may not have budget to buy, may not need the products on offer, or just don’t have enough interest.
Sales will draw this process as a funnel that has several stages. At each stage, a number of opportunities will fall out of the pipeline. Hence, the funneling effect. They start as opportunities (hey – I’ve got someone’s phone number!), progress to prospects (they actually my call!), become qualified prospects (they have budget!), and finally customers (wow – they actually signed the contract!)