Portfolio Management Office Head


New ways of working have been adopted in accordance with Government COVID-19 advice. Although the team is based in Corsham the successful candidate could be based in Corsham, London or Northwood. Other locations would be considered. Regular travel to Corsham and the other locations would be expected.


About the job


The Portfolio Management Office Head supports Senior Responsible Officers, Delivery Directors and other key stakeholders to successfully deliver the Defence Digital Portfolio of Programmes and Projects.


Job description

The successful candidate is responsible for leading a collection of programmes and projects that contribute to the delivery of departmental or business area objectives. They are primarily responsible for the prioritisation and effective allocation of resources across the portfolio to ensure optimal delivery of departmental/business strategic objectives in line with Government priorities.

They will define and maintain the standards for Portfolio, Programme and Project Management within Defence Digital. This includes the implementation and sharing of best practice as well as the development and application of project procedures, tools and techniques in order to standardise methodologies and realise benefits and economies.

The Head PMO provides expert guidance, support and insight on the Portfolio, Programmes and Projects and acts as the source of all project information and metrics.


Project Pipeline
• Leads prioritisation of projects for entry to portfolio in line with strategic objectives and Target Operating Model and Yes/No decision on entry taken by Portfolio Board.
• Maintaining the Defence Digital Programme Portfolio containing the prioritised list of all Defence Digital programmes, projects and live services (the Defence Digital ‘Order Book book’) and provide standardised monthly project delivery performance and benefits realisation reports.
• Identify future programme and project capability and capacity needs and ensure strategies are put in place and deliver them.
• Governance & Reporting – Maintain oversight of portfolio progress.
• Chair Governance Boards for taking decisions on Portfolio development in response to escalated risks or opportunities.
• Gain Management Board approval for Portfolio Strategy and implementation.
• Establish and maintain governance arrangements for the delivery of the Portfolio and its supporting programmes and projects. Define clear roles, responsibilities and accountabilities that align with recognised organisational best practice.
• Business Cases & Assurance – Oversee appropriate levels of assurance, both at Business Case decision points and on overall portfolio governance and progress.
• People & Leadership – Champion implementation of the portfolio across the organisation and provide overall lead and direction.
• Promote an energised culture focused on collaborative working in the interests of the organisation and portfolio as a whole.
• Lead the PMO, developing a clear vision and standards and champion the use of best practice project management approaches and processes.

Planning, Scheduling & Resourcing
• Ensure portfolio evolves to reflect changes in strategic directives and business priorities.
• Secure the provision of resources needed from internal/external providers.
• Manage the integration of project outputs and dependencies within strategic objectives.
• Develop effective project control frameworks and strategies. Create a culture of continuous improvement and learning from experience.
• Identify and manage interdependencies, ensure coherence, and identify opportunities to improve effectiveness and efficiency across the portfolio.
• Reporting and monitoring trends and cross-cutting analysis of the portfolio. Providing programme improvement intervention recommendations based on substantive management information and data analytics, ensure Portfolio data is shared in an appropriate manner with the Functional Portfolio

• Establish and maintain common reporting tooling and cadence for the portfolio and supporting programmes, including the systems engineering and service management processes, tools and standards to be applied and ensuring systematic adoption. Ensure the tooling is consistent with broader functional tooling requirements.

Risk & Opportunity Management
• Take decisions in response to escalated risks or opportunities. Identify common capabilities and opportunities for linking up, re-using and sharing of methods and resources and drive implementation to realise benefits and efficiencies.
• Monitor the effectiveness of controls and ensure that recommendations from external reviews are acted upon.
• Develop and agree budgets for projects and/or programmes and forecast actual costs against them.
• Work closely with commercial colleagues to ensure commercial delivery approaches are aligned and optimised with portfolio needs.
• Ensure continuous improvement of project management processes and standards, including the Risk and Issues management process, driving innovation and introducing the latest ideas and learnings from professional bodies and academic research.

Stakeholder Management
• Cultivate, manage and build a range of strong relationships and key strategic alliances with internal / external stakeholders.
• Lead senior stakeholders in regularly reviewing the continuing relevance of projects based on a clear understanding of cost, risk and contribution to strategic objectives.
• Provide visible and effective leadership, working with project and programme managers to deliver agreed Business Case benefits and outcomes.
• Maintain alignment of the programme with the Department’s strategic direction and plan for the incorporation of new and/or changing requirements, priorities and initiatives in consultation with the joint/lead user.
• Work with stakeholders to define, direct and deliver the transformational change within their respective business areas to realise programme benefits.
• Maintain alignment with the Head of Portfolio, Performance and Governance for the Defence Digital Function.
• Working with the Head of Portfolio, Performance and Governance to ensure that the Defence Digital PMO and wider function remain cohered.

Please see attached the Candidate Information Pack for further details.


Relevant professional qualifications and/or membership of a professional body e.g. Management of Portfolios, MSP, APMP, PRINCE2 or if you are currently working in the public sector then being a graduate of the Major Projects Leadership Academy would be helpful.


• Learning and development tailored to your role
• An environment with flexible working options
• A culture encouraging inclusion and diversity
• A Civil Service pension

Apply now!