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What Is The Difference Between The Project Manager And Project Management Officer?

by Logan

A project manager manages a single project, whereas a management officer manages many schemes launched by the same company. While the project manager handles each project individually, the project management officer handles interdependencies by looking at methodologies.

As a project management officer, you handle the project process, and the project manager takes care of the actual work. By guiding and structuring projects, the PMO focuses on the general operations of the projects and delivers tangible benefits to the organization.

It’s easy to mix the two since a thin line separates them.

If you want to clarify your confusion about these terms, continue reading.

What Is A Project Manager?

A project manager is responsible for executing a project from start to finish.

His job is to plan, organize, and execute projects while working within deadlines and budgets. It’s his job to manage a project daily and manage these six aspects:

  • Scope
  • Schedule
  • Finance
  • Risk
  • Quality
  • Resources

The job of project management allows you to have diversified experience. Your daily schedule is not the same. It changes to the demands of the required project.

Here is a short video about the roles and responsibilities of a project manager.

Roles of project manager

Roles And Responsibilities Of Project Manager

The project manager has diversified responsibilities from initiation to completion throughout the project life cycle. These roles and responsibilities vary depending on the project they’re in charge of.

Overall, the project manager is responsible for;

  • Defining the scope of the project
  • Keeping track of the given schedule
  • minimizing the project’s cost and keeping it within budget
  • Managing all types of available project resources
  • Communicating with team members and stake holders
  • Managing quality assurance
  • Assessing and minimizing risks
An image of people in office discussing certain projects.
Management is a practice where art, science, and craft meet.

What Is A Project Management Officer?

The project management officer is the one who supervises the technical aspects of a variety of projects. He oversees the relationship between different projects within a single organization.

He oversees the procedures and methodologies used in a project. He is not directly involved in any project, but he has to ensure the seamlessness of all the projects. He is the one who provides the smooth running and completion of a variety of projects undergoing in a company.

The project management officer also ensures that all the requirements for completing a project are procured, and risks of failure are minimized.

Roles And Responsibilities Of Project Management Officer

The roles and responsibilities of the project management officer depend on the type of industry in which he is working.

Typically, the primary responsibilities of the project management officer are the following:

  • Establish a timeline and determine the project’s needs
  • Delegate tasks to the project management team
  • Make sure a project gets done before the deadline
  • Make changes to teams and processes as needed

The project management officer’s efforts are to ensure that all the projects undergoing within a company are completed without any delay.

What is The Difference Between Project Manager And Project Management Officer?

People often confuse these roles as there is very little difference between them.

The main difference is that the project manager is responsible for a single project. In contrast, the project management officer oversees all the tasks handled by a single company.

Here is a table showing the apparent differences between these roles.

Project ManagerProject Management Officer
Has a generalist set of skills.Has a specialized set of skills.
Has general education with some management training.Has specialized training in a specific field like business, economics, IT, etc.
Responsible for the success of a projectAccountable for the success of the team
Incharge of planning, budgeting, staffing, and executing the workIncharge of managing projects and giving instructions to staff and subcontractors.
Handles different types of projectsHandles projects related to a specified field.
Differences between Project manager and project management officer

Does PMO stands for Project Management Officer Or Project Management Office?

PMO refers to both the project management office and the project management officer. Different people refer to PMO differently.

“PMO” is most commonly coined for the project management office. The project management office is an integral part of any organization. The project manager and the project management officer are parts of the PMO team.

An image of an office worker doing her job meticulously.
A good project manager can help you build business efficiency and output.

Is Project Management officer Higher Than Project Manager?

It depends on several factors, including the type of project management officer and his placement in an organization.

If the project management officer is new to the field and lowers in the hierarchy in an organization, it’s evident that he is working under a project manager.

However, if a project management officer is on a higher organizational level, as a hybrid or managerial, he is higher in the hierarchy than the project manager. All the project managers working within an organization are accountable to him.

Can A Project Management Officer Becomes A Project Manager?

The roles of both the project management officer and project manager are interchangeable.

The project management officer can become a project manager if he works under a project manager on a particular project. His excellent performance called for the upgrade to the project manager position.

However, if a project manager already works on a higher level in the organization and handles various projects, the manager works under him. In this case, the project management officer cannot become the project manager as it’ll lead to the downgrading from his original position.

Is a PMO Higher Than a Project Manager?

There isn’t a set rule for this.

It will depend on many things, like what kind of PMO it is, how old it is, and where it is in an organization.

These and other factors will determine whether or not project managers report to the PMO or if the PMO is just there to help people with their projects.

Final Thoughts

People often mix up the role of project manager and project management officer. It’s not their fault, as their parts are pretty similar and can be interchanged when needed.

The fundamental difference between both is that the project manager is the one who oversees the completion and execution of a single project. In contrast, a project management officer oversees many projects undergoing in an organization and manages their interdependence with each other.

The project manager works on a variety of projects from time to time. However, he is in charge of a single project under its completion. He manages all the aspects related to that single project from its initiation till its completion. It’s his responsibility to work on a project with his team and within a restricted schedule and budget.

In the case of the project management officer, A specialized person is hired to work on projects related to a single field. He’ll manage all the tasks associated with his lot in a single company. His exact job description depends on the type of industry and the needs of an organization.

A project management officer also works as the assistant to the project manager, and both of their roles can be interchanged depending on the organizational needs.

Both the project manager and the project management officer are jobs with broad career opportunities if you’re interested in choosing one of them as your career lines.

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A short web story regarding these differences can be found by clicking here.

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