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The P3O model was developed by the OGC (UK Office of Government Commerce) and is from the same stable as PRINCE2® and MSP®. It provides the structure, governance, functions and services required for defining a balanced portfolio of change and ensuring consistent delivery of programmes and projects across an organisation or department. It could successfully take many forms, all of which are explored with the P3O guidance – from a single all-encompassing physical office to a complex model made up of a permanent Portfolio Office supported by permanent hubs and temporary Programme/Project Offices.

There is no ‘one size fits all’ approach – in a large government department or large corporate, the P3O model may be the ideal, however, in a small organisation the P3O model may simply be a single individual acting as a multi-tasking P3O officer.

ALC offers a 5-day two module training and certification program comprising the Foundation Certificate (3 days) followed by the Practitioner Certificate (2 days). The Foundation module can be taken on its own.

Learning outcomes

After attending this P3O training program you will be able to:
  • Identify which P3O model is most appropriate to the strategic objectives of your organisation
  • Understand and learn to measure the value that a P3O offers to an organisation
  • Identify the functions/services of a P3O
  • Know the roles and responsibilities associated with a P3O service
  • Practice strategic analysis and portfolio modelling techniques used within a P3O
  • Understand the relationships between strategy, portfolio, programme and project, and how these different relationships affect management issues
  • Learn how to implement or revitalise a P3O
  • Understand the P3O business case, and its relationship to the P3M3 Maturity Model

Who should attend

The course is designed for:
  • Programme Managers
  • Programme Directors
  • Business Managers involved in approving/prioritising business change investments
  • Project Managers who need to better understand Portfolio/Programmes/Project Office Managers
  • Programme/Project Office Managers
  • Staff who perform roles within a PMO/P3O structure
  • P3O and PMO Consultants
  • Individuals who require P3O certification
  • Managers who need a structure for working alongside corporate organisational investments (projects and programmes)
  • Team members employed within or alongside a support office
  • Anybody who needs to understand and apply the principles of portfolio, programme and project support

Course contents

P3O Foundation (Days 1-3)

This course comprehensively covers concepts, terms and theory and is packed full of real world examples and sample exercises.

1. Agile Project Management Fundamentals
  • Setting the scene, value of having a P3O model and the consequences  of not having a P3O, how to create the business case.
2.  What is a P3O Model?
  • Overview of models, functions and services, roles and responsibilities and integration into the organisation.
3. How to Implement a P3O Model
  • Lifecycle, stages of delivery, delivery, review and lessons learned, closure and benefits review.
4.  How to Operate – Tools and Techniques
  • Benefits, critical success factors, tools, techniques and tailoring approaches.
5. Roles and Responsibilities
  • Include management and generic roles and functional-based roles.
6. Foundation  Exam


P3O Practitioner (Days 4-5)

This module thoroughly deals with the practical application of P3O and works extensively through case studies. The course finishes with an exam review and then the actual Practitioner exam.

Course fees


Fees  per person

  • Available on a Private Group basis - contact us for a quote.


  • There are no pre requisites to sit the Foundation exam.
  • To sit the Practitioner exam delegates must have passed the Foundation exam.

All exams will be conducted online. During the course you will receive an exam voucher and instructions how to book the exam for a date and time of your choice within 12 months of the course. The exams are web-proctored by PeopleCert and are available 24/7.

Foundation  Exam

  • Multiple choice examination questions
  • 75 questions - 70 live questions and five trial
  • 60 minutes’ duration
  • 35 marks required to pass (out of 70 available) – 50%
  • Closed book.

Practitioner Exam

  • Objective testing
  • Four questions of 20 marks each - 80 marks in total
  • 150 minutes’ duration
  • 40 marks required to pass (out of 80 available) – 50%
  • Open book - (Portfolio, Programme and Project Offices: P3O guide only).