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Talent, Tech to Bolster the Success of Project Management Offices in Nigeria, Says PMI

The PMI 2021 Talent Gap Report predicts that demand for project management-oriented employment (PMOE) in SSA will grow by 40% by 2030.



Ashwini Bakshi, Managing Director, Europe and Sub-Saharan Africa, PMI
Ashwini Bakshi, Managing Director, Europe and Sub-Saharan Africa, PMI,

A new report by Project Management Institute (PMI), the leading professional association for project management, places the spotlight on how talent and technology will contribute to the success of the project management office (PMO) in Nigeria after a survey conducted by PMI and professional services firm, PwC, to address the current state of PMO maturity.

The findings in the new report, “PMO Success in Sub-Saharan Africa” which polled 4,069 people involved in leading or facilitating the delivery of projects, programs, and portfolios demonstrate that The Project Economy can be reengineered with a people-focused and digitally-enabled approach to project management to suit the region’s unique challenges and opportunities.   

Nigeria and South Africa led the response profile with 24% and 23% respectively followed by Kenya (11%) and Ghana (10%) in the multi-sector research involving construction, financial services, IT, telecommunications, government, and others.

While the global maturity index score shows there is still a long way to go for PMOs on their maturity journey, it identified a cohort of 230 PMOs called the “Top 10 Percent”, leaders across all parameters of the index – governance, integration and alignment, processes, technology and data, and people.

The Top 10 Percent serve as a benchmark for what organisations in SSA can do to join them.

Companies with advanced PMO maturity performed much better than the previous year in common performance indicators such as revenue, customer loyalty and acquisition, and environment, social, and governance (ESG).

This was highlighted in their response to the COVID-19 pandemic, where the Top 10 Percent supported the sharp pivot their organisations took by accelerating new ways of working and de-risking their environment.

Ashwini Bakshi, Managing Director, Europe and Sub-Saharan Africa, PMI, says, “The PMO has a vital role as the world transitions to a post-pandemic era. PMOs will be more agile and move beyond the tactical execution of projects and perform a wider range of activities that drive strategic value. These evolved PMOs will embrace new technology, focus on team culture and help develop project managers into ambassadors for value creation. They will also have a greater presence in the boardroom by working with the C-suite to align projects effectively with organisational strategy,” Bakshi adds. 

“Most organisations have been integrating digital technologies into their way of working long before COVID-19. However, when the world was forced online, efforts only accelerated, with talent management taking a backseat. As businesses re-emerge, now more digitally transformed than ever, they will need to embark on a “talent transformation” journey to progress their vision. Without the right talent in place, projects and programs are likely to fail, or the vision compromised to fit with the organisation’s capabilities.”

The PMI 2021 Talent Gap Report predicts that demand for project management-oriented employment (PMOE) in SSA will grow by 40% by 2030.

The global economy will need 25 million new project professionals by 2030, meaning that 2.3 million people will need to enter PMOE every year to keep up with the demand.  


According to Bakshi, the potential in sub-Saharan Africa resides in its people. By developing talent strategies that suit the unique needs of the region and promote a digitally enabled workforce, organisations can harness this potential and propel their own growth.

More about Project Management Institute (PMI)

Project Management Institute (PMI) is the leading professional association for project management and the authority for a growing global community of millions of project professionals and individuals who use project management skills.

Collectively, these professionals and “changemakers” consistently create better outcomes for businesses, communities and society worldwide.

PMI empowers people to make ideas a reality. Through global advocacy, networking, collaboration, research, and education, PMI prepares organisations and individuals at every stage of their career journey to work smarter so they can drive success in a world of change.

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